Time Management

110 STASHED IDEAS

A perpetually rushed state can cause chronic stress, which can weaken your immune system, and interfere with your sleep and energy levels. It can also make it challenging to stay focused, which may affect your work performance.

The constant feeling of urgency can draw us away from meaningful relationships. We lose patience with those who move slower and struggle to stay connected and empathetic, ultimately leading to conflict and fallouts.

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@theodorexh235

Time Management

  • Place tasks in a proper perspective. Consider what is really time-sensitive and what is not.
  • Carve out small windows of time for self-care, then increase them over time. Use the time to do things you enjoy, such as reading, talking, walking and meditation.
  • Create an evening routine to help you wind down.
  • Give yourself time to think. Constantly moving from task to task prevents you from seeing the bigger picture.
  • Get support from loved ones. Ask them to point out when you're falling back into your old habits.
  1. Everything is a race for you. You treat everyday tasks such as shopping, eating or driving like a race, and slowing down cause you anxiety.
  2. Focusing on just one task at a time feels intolerable. You want to know what else you can squeeze in.
  3. You get highly irritable when you are delayed. You'll do anything to avoid wasting time.
  4. You always feel like you are behind schedule. A day is not long enough for you.
  5. Your impatience causes you to interrupt or talk over people.
  6. You feel satisfied if you can check things off your to-do list.
Hurry sickness is a behaviour pattern

It is characterised by continuous rushing and a sense of urgency, even if there is no need for it. You may be racing to cross items off your to-do list, multi-tasking, or feeling agitated if you are slowed down.

Hurry sickness is part of the broader Type A personality complex, according to professor John Schaubroeck. If you are always in a hurry, you're also likely to be driven to achieve small outcomes, be competitive, and impatient.

Hard tasks require a task set

The brain needs ready access to the information, plans, and procedures it will be using to solve complex problems. This collective task knowledge is known as a task set. But the task set is not always immediately available.

Returning to a hard task comes with a 'restart' cost where we first have to spend time and mental effort getting back into our task before making progress. It is then essential to create time and space for hard tasks.

When we multitask, the tasks use shared cognitive resources, such as working memory, It makes the tasks compete for the shared resource and interfere with one another.

  • Remove cues to other tasks. Put away e-mail and social media and their associated alerts.
  • Beware the power of attraction of easy tasks. While you may feel productive, they prevent you from doing the tasks you need to do.
  • Stay with it. Keep on trying, even if you don't make progress every day.
  • Be open to reconceptualising problem structure. If the system we invented leads to dead ends, be open to looking for a new way to address it.
  • Take breaks. It will help keep mental costs low.
  • Interact with people with diverse backgrounds, perspectives and viewpoints. It can help us conceptualise a problem in new ways.
  • Set aside large blocks of time for complex work. We will need a long gap for intense work as well as time to re-establish our task set. Continually switching tasks interferes with the quality of work.
  • Be consistent. Try to reserve a consistent time and place for our hard work and be protective of it. Working on the task repeatedly in the same context can aid in faster retrieval.
Context Switching

Most of us like to multitask thinking that it is keeping us working efficiently, however, many studies are believing the contrary.

Context switching is a factor that keeps us from performing at our best. When given multiple projects, staying in the zone is harder than one thinks. If you're always switching you'll always miss a lot of effortless productivity.

  • The statement "I just don't have enough time" is an explicable untruth.
  • Time-blocking can help with handling your time in an efficient manner.
  • This will aid you in being more specific and focused on your workload while needing less time to achieve the same results.

Spending too much time on planning and editing is not an ideal way to work. As much as possible we want to be efficient with our time so that we won't lose the momentum of focus.

Here's how:

  • Gather enough information to initiate the project and work until you finish about half of the project.
  • Ask for feedback based off on the 50% finished draft.
  • Work on the revisions based on the feedback that has been provided.
  • Detailed checklists are especially helpful when tackling complex projects. Here you can be as meticulous as you can be.
  • It's a system that gets things done without thinking too much and this system works even if you delegate it to someone else, you'll be able to receive the same results in the most likely manner.
  • Think of it as an exceptionally detailed flow chart.
  • Having a checklist allows you to save and load the context you want in less time while also preventing procrastination.
  • Assign a context or a theme for every day of the week so that you can add variety to your weekdays.
  • Create a list of the tasks that you have to perform and group them into different days that fits your needs.
  • Keeping your workdays deep together is not a problem at all as long as it works for you.
  • Write down in a list all the tasks you can think of that's been provided to you
  • Group the tasks together and sort them out from most urgent down to the ones with a flexible deadline
  • For the tasks that are not-so-important, either you delegate them to someone else or you postpone them
  • Delete distractions and make it a priority to delete them
  • Afterwards, finish the task that takes the least amount of time to do and move forward from there.

Procrastinating is frustrating. To lessen this try this method and see if it works out for you:

  • List down all the things you have to do (just like in brain dumping except you expand on the tiny tasks)
  • Group the tasks together in the same place, platform, or pattern
  • Schedule your time. How much time is there left before you should submit it? Keep in mind that the longer it takes you to finish your tasks, the more work you will be accumulating
  • Time-block and get the job done in one sitting.

Laser mode happens when your attention is truly focused on the present: you’re in the flow, meaning you are fully engaged, and immersed in the moment.

The key to getting into Laser mode and focusing on your Highlight is to defeat distraction. To do that, make distraction hard to access. When distractions are not accessible, you don’t have to worry about willpower.

  • No notifications; leave only the really critical and useful ones enabled.
  • Log out when you're done with an app, and keep a clean Homescreen.
  • Stay out of Infinity Pools: don’t reach for your phone first thing in the morning, read the news weekly, not daily, put a timer on your internet use, and remind yourself what are your real priorities.
  • Deal with email at the end of the day or have a designated time in your day just for that; answer messages in batch.

Take control of your time by choosing where you direct your attention. And your daily Highlight is the target of that attention.
Principles for picking your Highlight:

  1. Urgency. Think about the most pressing thing you have to do today.
  2. Satisfaction. Ask yourself which Highlight will give you the most satisfaction.
  3. Joy. Ask yourself: When I reflect on today, what will bring me the most joy?
The "Make Time" Framework

Make Time is a framework that can help you create more time for the things you find important, in 4 steps, repeated every day:

  1. Highlight: Pick a single activity to prioritize in your schedule.
  2. Laser: Use certain tactics to stay laser-focused on your priority.
  3. Energize: Charge your battery with exercise, food, sleep and quiet time.
  4. Reflect: Adjust and improve your system.

When you don’t take care of your body, your brain can’t do its job.

  • Exercise every day: Go small and go every day.
  • Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.
  • Optimize your caffeine intake.
  • Take breaks without screens and go outside.
  • Be present in the moment (eat without watching TV, for example).
  • Remove all electronic devices to transform your bedroom into a true sanctuary for sleep.
  • Write down your highlight of the day. Put it in a visible place, to create a visual reminder.
  • Trust your gut to decide whether an urgent, joyful, or satisfying Highlight is best for today.
  • Repeat to build momentum and create a habit.
  • Choose the same Highlight for several days in a row.
  • Schedule your Highlight in your the calendar and block time for it.
  • Highlights should take 60-90 minutes.
  1. Observe what’s going on.
  2. Guess why things are happening the way they are.
  3. Experiment to test your hypothesis.
  4. Measure the results and decide whether you were right.

Take time for daily reflection: did you made time for your Highlight? How well you were able to focus on it? If you fail at first, don’t be hard on yourself when you fail. Use your notes to Give it time and use the notes improve your process.

  • Our productivity is actually connected to the productivity of other people in our organization, our clients and even end-users.
  • Management has to intervene in order to ensure that there is productivity across the company, making this a top-down approach.
  • A factory style routinization of work using flowcharts or other processes is not appealing to expert knowledge workers, who prefer an organic approach tailored to their unique ways of working and their lifestyle.

As offices got shut down all around the world, all the inefficiencies in the present systems and the haphazard work models got amplified.

The humble inbox became a repository of everything that is pending, with many not even knowing what all needs to be done, leading to overload and chaos.

Various organizational tools, production methods and other ways towards efficiency appealed to the logical mind, but slowly it dawned to many that the basic concept of these systems were the industrial processes themselves, and just a reusing of repetitive, mechanical motions, repackaged for knowledge workers.

These systems, however logical and appealing they looked, were not aiding productivity even though it seemed like that on the surface.

Most productivity methods do not address a fundamental problem: How work actually unfolds in an organization.

They essentially limit themselves by seemingly providing a great organizational tool to an individual, not taking into account the cumulative negative effect it has on the entire group, and the additional work it creates for the other individuals.

Personal Productivity: A Primer

In the 1950s, work shifted from being labour-intensive towards being mind-intensive and eventually started to overload people’s cognitive abilities.

This led to the personal productivity boom, and books like ‘Getting Things Done’ and many others were hugely successful, as managers, professionals and knowledge workers tried to be productive while juggling their work and personal life.

A productivity method called ‘Inbox Zero’ by Merlin Mann, a productivity hacker and creator of many other productivity tools like 43 folders, became a rage in 2007. It was based on the fact that all email should be answered or categorized until the inbox has zero emails left.

While sounding great, this personal productivity method actually increased a person’s email, leading to a circular path of pseudo-work: replying to the endless email.

What organizations need to develop is a system that externalizes tasks, with virtual task boards that specify who is working on what at any time, along with the current status.

Optimization on a large scale only becomes possible when transparent data is there for each team member's workload.

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