Effective time management is crucial in nearly any job. It ensures you can tackle your responsibilities while meeting critical deadlines. Additionally, time management lets you avoid the stress associated with having to rush, as you can carve out enough of your day to handle assigned tasks.
Generally, time management skills are something people can develop or further hone. If you want to improve your time management skills, here are some simple habits that get you moving in the right direction.
It’s easy to underestimate the time required to handle specific responsibilities. As a result, effective time management does involve being realistic about your targets and schedule. If you’re overly optimistic, you might overfill your day, increasing the odds that you’re left rushing at the end or that you fall short.
In many cases, breaking down large duties into smaller chunks makes it easier to estimate the total time required. Additionally, it gives you clear milestones that you can schedule individually, making it easier to stay on target.
Embrace Your Calendar
Going beyond a to-do list and actually adding tasks to your calendar can lead to better time management. It helps you visualize the number of minutes or hours required to handle various duties. As a result, you’ll have an easier time assessing how much time your responsibilities take.
Plus, embracing your calendar lets you block off the time formally. If others can view your calendar, they’ll see you’re unavailable, reducing the odds of spontaneous drop-ins or meeting invites that conflict with your schedule.
Make Decisions Based on Priority
In many cases, your responsibilities aren’t considered equal when it comes to prioritization. Some tasks are highly time-sensitive or operationally critical. Additionally, other team members may have duties that are dependent on you completing specific work. The degree of visibility might even vary.
By assessing the priority level of your responsibilities, you can determine which tasks need to happen sooner rather than later. That allows you to focus on top-priority tasks when scheduling your work, ensuring duties that can’t miss deadlines are handled as early as possible.
Adopt a Single-Tasking Mindset
Generally speaking, multitasking is a myth. Most people can’t handle two activities at once. Instead, they rapidly shift between each task, disrupting their focus and having to reset every time they switch.
Single-tasking is typically better for time management. With single-tasking, you give an activity your full focus until it’s complete. As a result, you’re more efficient and productive, allowing you to complete work in less time.
Add Breaks to Your Schedule
Stepping away from your work can actually lead to better time management. Skipping breaks increases stress levels and increases your risk of burnout. Giving yourself a break allows you to rest, relax, and recenter.
Make sure you add your breaks and lunch to your calendar. Additionally, set up notifications to alert you when those times arrive, giving you a prompt to set your tasks aside momentarily. That approach ensures you don’t end up missing your breaks accidentally and serves as a critical reminder to encourage you to practice better self-care.
Ultimately, all of the simple habits above improve your time management skills. If you’d like to learn more or are seeking out new job opportunities, TempStaff can help. Contact us today.