3 Barriers to Time Management
This photo was taken on a long run last month when I took some extra time to explore! Exploration is one of the first things to go when I'm struggling to manage my time. But it's so worth the effort to make the time because it refreshes my soul. 🥰
Let's talk about what keeps us from managing our time well and how to resolve those barriers for better days, weeks, months, and lives.
Barrier #1: Unrealistic Expectations
Maybe it's just me, but I tend to think I can do way more than is actually possible in a given period of time. So I frequently find myself wondering why I wasn't able to complete my list for a day. Filling a day until it's overflowing with tasks and appointments gets in the way of successful time management because it's an attempt to manage an illusion and not reality.
Tip #1: Make Realistic Expectations
Start by taking stock of the time you actually have in a day. Literally track your time for a day or two writing down what you do each hour. You already know that you have to eat, sleep, maintain hygiene, and work inside or outside of your home. If you're managing your work day and you know you'll have seven hours to work, start there and estimate the amount of time it takes to do certain tasks. Then you can block time to spend working on other things that you don't naturally make time to do. If you find that there's simply not enough time in the day, consider delegating to a colleague, or to a family member if it's housework. If delegation is not an option, now you know you may need to have a conversation with the person in charge about the reasonableness of your assignments.
Barrier #2: The Blitz Approach
Maybe you know all the things you need to do and eagerly tackle various tasks only to find that halfway through the day you feel like you've accomplished nothing. You may have started several things, but you haven't finished most of them. It can be puzzling to see that the most important things are incomplete day after day with this approach.
Tip #2: Know Your Priorities
Start by considering what is most important to you (in an ideal world). Then take a look at your calendar or think back over the past day or week observing to which people and activities you actually give the most time. Do your highest priority people and activities get your attention consistently? Is it enough? This isn't to say that if your family is your first priority you must spend ninety percent of your time with your family. But as you plan your available time, after non-negotiable tasks, you can give your family the first blocks of time and distribute the remaining time to lesser priority items.
Barrier #3: Procrastination
You know what to do, you know how to start, but somehow you just don't get to it. Time passes and you find yourself in a totally avoidable, very uncomfortable situation.
Tip #3: Objectively Observe Emotions and Challenges
There are many reasons for procrastination, but here is one very effective place to start to overcome it. As objectively as you can, observe the emotions that come up when you think about the task at hand. Notice whether you're bored, resentful, frustrated, lacking confidence, or something else. Then deal with your specific barrier. Coach yourself or connect with a coach to explore the challenge and gain insight until you're free from it. I'm confident that you can work through this yourself, but if you would like my support you can sign up for a Cornerstone Chat here. It's free of charge!
Join me this Saturday for a Time Management Coaching Workshop for just $10. We will assess your current schedule, identify your ideals for spending time intentionally, and strategize so that you can accomplish more than you thought possible in the final two months of this decade.
Date: Saturday, November 9, 2019
Session 1: 10:00 AM Central Time
Session 2: 12:15 PM Central Time
Session 3: 12:30 PM Central Time
Location: Zoom - Join the video conference by computer, tablet, or mobile phone. The link will be emailed to paid participants.
Price: $10.00 (USD) paid via Venmo or PayPal
Sign up for the November 9 Time Management Coaching Workshop at this link!