Time management is also about making room for the non-work things you love and those that allow you to recharge.
Think about what recharges your batteries: It might be nature, exercise, friends, art, baking, or anything else you enjoy. And make time for it.
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You can’t really clean up your schedule if you don’t know what’s in it—and that includes all the things on your literal and official calendar and all the things that aren’t.
We tend to overestimate our time and energy in the future and so we fill our calendars with tasks we think we'll be able to complete.
When you’re thinking about something in the future, ask yourself if you’d do it tomorrow. You know how much energy you have now and presume it’ll be pretty similar tomorrow. That allows you to be a little more judicious.
Part of cleaning up your schedule is finding strategies to prevent it from getting cluttered again.
Block chunks of time on your calendar when you won’t be available to answer emails or phone calls or to attend meetings. This will prevent other things from accumulating and occupying the time you need.
Is there a task at work that you could delegate or outsource? Delegate or partner up with someone to ease your job.
If you can’t pass off certain tasks to others wholesale, try to minimize the time and effort they require.
Once you know what’s on your calendar, ask yourself: “What is the purpose of each thing on here? Are we accomplishing that or does something need to change?”
Question each task. Start with recurring meetings, which can very easily build up and take over your calendar.
... and put them in one of four quadrants:
We all have busy schedules, but we are incorrectly planning our day around the time we have, not around priorities.
Our estimates on how long certain tasks will take are almost always not realistic.
Also, explain to your colleagues/boss/clients that you only check email at certain times, and that they can call you or use instant messaging if the matter is really urgent.
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