In a Hurry? Time Management for the Busy Professional!

Today I feel particularly harried. My to-do list is overflowing, the phone is ringing, and the end of the day is approaching while there are still about a million things left to do. If you’re busy and think you have no time for time management, think again! A few moments spent “sharpening the saw” will yield terrific results! Here are some of my own tips for staying on top of your time.

We only have 24 hours

That might seem like a stupid thing to say, but it’s a good reminder that we’re only human. You can’t clone yourself (yet!), so you’re the one who has to get everything done. You need a few hours for sleep, some for eating, and some relaxation. By the way, you might like: Time Management for the Tired and Frazzled.

Spend 15 minutes

Every evening, I spend up to 15 minutes creating my list for the following day. This is a brain dump so I don’t think of these things as I’m trying to fall asleep. Simply write down everything you can think of that needs to get done. 15 minutes is only 1% of your day.

Prioritize the list

I like to number my list in the order that things need to get done. Here’s an article you might like: How to Avoid the Five Stages of Social Media Burnout. So you have a road map for the following day, and can spend your precious time doing, rather than puzzling over what needs to happen first and last.

Leave space for last-minute items

There will always be last-minute emergencies, phone calls, and meetings that spill over, etc. So leave some time for those. If you don’t get any last-minute chores, take the time for yourself. Sometimes meetings will get canceled, and those are gifts of extra time for you.

Leave space between things

Your health is the most important priority. Without you, nothing is possible. Your business will probably fall off (unless your business can run without you, that is). So leave yourself some time to transition. And just breathe. Or have a snack.

Decide what not to do!

Sometimes procrastinating (on some things) can be very helpful. Someone else may take that chore you didn’t want to do, for instance. Or suddenly, that “emergency” isn’t one any more. That’s often the case!

Figure out how to say no

This is maybe the most important one of all! Think of a few different ways to say no. Here’s a good article from Inc. Magazine on 7 Tips for Saying No Effectively. Who do you need to say no to? Maybe it’s a family member, or a friend who keeps interrupting you?

How do you manage your time?

I really do want to know. Leave a comment. And thank you.


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