Think you could be getting more done? Don’t we all, but the saving time is money is especially true when you run your own business. Productivity and time management skills don’t come natural to everyone and that’s okay. The key is to identify the mistakes you’re making so you can be more efficient and better delegate your energy. Here are 5 common time management mistakes you should avoid.
1. Not Planning Out Your Day
It’s important to plan out your day for maximum efficiency. You don’t have to know what you’re doing by the minute, but try to set daily goals including tasks you’d like to complete, then prioritize them in order of importance. Also, consider prepping your tasks and brainstorming in advance to save yourself time and energy. You can plan out your day simply with a calendar application or you can write down a detailed to-do list in a daily planner. Having a general guide will help you stay on track throughout the day so you waste less time.
Procrastination can be extremely draining and a big waste of time. It’s easier to procrastinate when you don’t have structure or any relief. You can fix this by prioritizing and tackling your most challenging tasks early in the day. If you prioritize your most important tasks, you’ll be able to get them completed and out of the way early. Also, focus on giving yourself short breaks throughout the day to recoup.
3. Over Commitment
Another reason why your time management sucks (and perhaps why you may be procrastinating) is because you’re overcommitted and have too much going on. When you have too much going on, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and accomplish nothing because you have no idea where to start. It’s common to say yes to everything in an attempt to please others, but it’s crucial that you draw the line somewhere. Your time and energy and limited resources. Weigh the cost and benefit before you say yes to something and determine a limit for your level of commitment.
4. Not Scheduling or Automating
Time management is all about using the time you have wisely and effectively to produce your desired results. If you’re doing everything yourself, you’ll find it harder to manage time and make any progress. This is why you should consider automating and scheduling certain tasks. Even if you’re a solo-preneur and don’t have a team of employees, you can still outsource some tasks, or use online tools to schedule and automate work for yourself to lighten your work load.
5. Not Getting Rid of Distractions
Finally, you have to get rid of distractions if you want to make better use of your time. Lack of focus can be a huge obstacle to overcome, but you can make it easier on yourself by avoiding distractions. Stop multi-tasking, turn off the television, move away from loud noises, put your phone away, and avoid social media in order to get more done in less time. Another big interruption can be email. If you find yourself constantly checking your email out of habit, delete the app from your phone and close the tab in your browser when it’s time to work. Set up designated times throughout the day to spend a few minutes checking email so you don’t feel pressured to do it every 10 minutes.
Time management can be a tough nut to crack if you feel like other people always seem to get way more done while you’re just holding on by a thread. Look at your typical work day and identify whether you’re making any of these common mistakes so you can gain more of your time back so you can spend it on what’s important to you. Have you ever made any of these time management mistakes?
Originally published here.