Introduction: Time Management Techniques – Which is Right for You?
Once you have squandered your time, you cannot regain it. That’s why so many people are searching for a time management techniques or a system that’s just right for them. They are looking for systems to make them more productive. Today we are living in an age where doing more with less resources is standard practice. To make sure that you do not become overwhelmed with all the demands on your time, you need a few time management tips and tricks that you can use.
As a former ghost blogger, who blogged about work and career, I was always looking for topics to blog about, and time management was one that I covered for my client. Additionally, I read a lot, because that’s one of the ways that I generate topics to write about, therefore, I often come across articles on time management. Over the past few months, I have noticed a spike in the number of articles on time management, which may be an indicator that people are so stressed that they are looking for techniques to manage their time more effectively.
Since time management is such a hot topic, I decided to evaluate some of the articles I recently came across, as well as use CurationSoft to see what the software would find. The other reason why I am writing this blog post, is that the most successful people have systems in place, and that’s why they are so successful. After having read the articles below that I am including in this curated post on time management, I realize that many people do not know the difference between a technique and an activity.
Time management activities would include: turning off email and mobile devices while working; only reading email messages at a certain time each day; making sure that meetings do not run for more than 30 minutes, and getting the agenda before each meeting; and saying, “No,” more often. According to Dictionary.com, technique means “the body of specialized procedures and methods used in any specific field, especially in an area of applied science.”
See the difference? The Pomodoro is a technique, participating in fewer and shorter meetings, is a practice. Below are time management techniques and practices. To get the most from this curated post on time management, there are a few things that I’d like you to do.
- Read each article listed below to learn about the time management techniques and practices that are referenced.
- Choose a few time management techniques and practices that you think will work for you.
- Test drive each technique for a week.
- Choose the one that you are likely to use.
- Start using the time management technique every day, combining it with a few of the practices.
- Check your results, are you doing a better job of managing your time? Why? Why not?
- Make tweaks to the technique if you have to.
Have you read?
Curated Articles on Time Management Techniques
23 Time Management Techniques of Insanely Busy People: I like this article because it gives you so many time management techniques to choose from. The writer mentions the Eisenhower Matrix, which we mention below. Some of techniques he covers will not be new to you, but we need the reminder, such as planning your schedule the night before, delegating or outsourcing tasks, automating repetitive tasks and so on.
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The Eisenhower matrix: How to decide on what’s important and urgent (without a to-do list): This article by Mayo Oshin explains what the Eisenhower Matrix is and how to use it effectively. Understanding this time management technique helps you to become more productive. To use the matrix you have to group your tasks into four categories. The four quadrants of the Eisenhower Matrix are as follows:
- Urgent and important (tasks to do immediately).
- Important, but not urgent (tasks to schedule later).
- Urgent, but not important (tasks to delegate to someone else).
- Neither urgent nor important (tasks to eliminate).
The article gives you enough information to start using the matrix right away.
In his lifetime, Eisenhower accomplished a lot and sustained high productivity for many years until his death. His best-known technique, the Eisenhower Matrix, is a simple, powerful tool that will boost your productivity today. Here’s how it works.
How Good is Your Time Management: This is a great starting point to time management because you are introduced to a tool to rank how effectively you manage your time.
The Simple Technique to Fit a 40-Hour Workweek into 16.7 Hours: I was very impressed with this Fast Company article because it is a very good case study. The writer, Chris Winfield, shares his experience using the Pomodoro Technique. Based on Winfield’s experience, and the advice he offers in the piece, I intend to try this technique to see if it will work for me. The article has some norms that I like, such as: Work with time, not against it; Eliminate Burnout; Manage Distractions; and Keep a better work/life balance. Please read the entire article to discover what Chris Winfield has to say.
8 TED Talks That Will Make You More Productive: In this article that first appeared in Business Insider, Rachel Gillett has curated eight of the best TED Talks on productivity. The most successful people are highly productive, and as a result, save time every day. Read the article and watch the TED Talks – investing the time now to read the article, will save you time in the future.
In this episode of Rough Draft, host Demian Farnworth shares a new productivity technique that flies in the face of conventional wisdom.
Why These Famous Time-Management Techniques Are Ruining Your Productivity: This is a five-minute podcast hosted by Demian Farnworth that’s worth listening to. I like the podcast because it dissects the Pomodoro Technique, which is mentioned above. Many people have short attention spans, but that’s not the case for me, I can easily work for over an hour without taking a break. Studies report that when someone multitasks, or is interrupted, it takes them a while to get up to speed. If you work for only 25 minutes, then take a break, how will that affect your productivity? What Farnworth recommends is that you find the right rhythm for you. So if you try the Pomodoro Technique, experiment with the lengths of time you work for before taking a break. The short podcast is worth listening to.
Time Management Techniques for UX Designers: I like this article because the writer evaluates three time management techniques – Pomodoro, Top 3 to-do list and Urgent vs. Important. The Top 3 To-do list works very well for me.
Read our guide on how to improve your time management skills at work – features valuable tips and tricks such as taking breaks and creating a schedule.
10 Time Management Techniques That Will Help You Accomplish Your Daily Goals: This article by Nicole Vulcan is more about time management practices to make you more productive, than a technique. Practices include stop multitasking, planning your schedule for the week on a Sunday, and cutting down on meetings. The article is worth the read, but I think you should combine the practices with an actual time management technique.
10 Timeless Time Management Techniques: Only some of the techniques mentioned do I consider to be actual techniques. Like the article above, they are productivity practices. Now, having said that, the article by Dan McCarthy includes some techniques, so it is worth the read. I love the idea of using the 80/20 rule to manage your time.
Final Thoughts: Time Management Techniques
Now that you have read about different time management techniques, and discovered time management practices to introduce to your day, decide carefully which ones you will start using. Use the best time management techniques and practices to build a system that’s customized for your situation.
Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free ProductivityThe Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things RightTime Management (The Brian Tracy Success Library)Organizing Your Day: Time Management Techniques That Will Work for YouMake It Count!: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus,Grind Your Creative MindTime Management: Proven Techniques for Making Every Minute CountTIME MANAGEMENT: saving 4 HOURS a week
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