What is Time Management?
Before the general definition, I’ll give you my personal thoughts about time management.
Time management is one of my favorite newest skills. If you wonder: “What is she talking about? Newest skill?”, let me explain. – I was terrible at time management. I wasn’t lazy – far from it.
I was actually the opposite of lazy. I wanted to do so much and was overwhelmed with ideas that I didn’t have the time to realize.
I felt helpless, not having enough time.
Not enough time to read as much as I wanted.
Not enough time to chat with friends.
Not enough time to do everything around Joana and all the care she needed.
Not enough time for taking classes or workshops.
Definitely not enough time for travel or fun.
Not enough time for self-care.
And I shifted all this. I finally got the tiger by its tail. Today time management is one of my most sophisticated skills and I stopped to use the phrase “I don’t have time.”
So can you, if you keep reading.
My friends say: When I grow up, I want to be organized like Maya Stoychevski. 😊
This sounds so hilarious to me. Especially because I remember Maya, who struggled to get on time.
I remember Maya, who couldn’t seem to book a little time for herself except for the most important basic things.
I remember Maya who was setting the alarm at 7am because she needed to be at work at 8am. The night before, I would say: No, I will put it for 7:10. On better thought, 7:13 it is. I was calculating in minutes to get at least one moment of sleep.
That Maya is long gone.
Now I am really good at time management, and people recognize that.
So, what is time management? It’s simply a skill for better use of our time.
There is a big illusion around the concept of having enough time.
You can’t have more time. Time is not something you have or don’t have. We all have exactly 24 hours, 7 days a week – period.
What you can is – have a plan. Or you can have excuses. Plan and excuses are the things that you have or don’t have.
How have I become so good at creating the time for everything I want?
First – I wrote down my current situation. I wrote so I could see on paper everything that was going on in my life around family, marriage, work, finances, friendships, success, education, and health.
I was brutally honest with myself. When I say brutally, I mean really sincere. This wasn’t a public document. No one that I will show this to. It wasn’t something I was doing to impress someone. That’s not how you do personal development.
If you want to change for the better and move towards progress, be honest with yourself and don’t justify your current bad habits. Aha, I touched on habits again, and you can read about those more in this article and in this one.
So, I was brutally honest about where I am now. And the next thing I did was write down where I wanted to be in family, marriage, work/business, finances, friendships, success, education, and health.
I was honest about why all of those aspects are important for me.
And I was honest about what actions I needed to take to get where I wanted. I calculated approximately how many hours I needed for each activity and set up a plan.
For the last 3 years, I have been doing segmentation of the month, the week, and the day.
The more detailed I get in this segmentation, the more efficient I am.
Sometimes it’s so detailed, for example:
*Waking up at 6am
*Morning routine by 6:40
*Replying to emails by 7
*Writing blog article by 8
*Breakfast by 8:30
*A session with a client between 9 and 10
*Raping up notes from the session by 10:30
*Go for a walk or prepare lunch
*A session with a client from 12 to 1pm
* Raping up notes from the session by 1:30
*Having lunch by 2:30
*Checking up messages (email and social media) by 3pm
And so on, and so on.
I am that detailed. Because when I wasn’t so specific, I would get distracted or procrastinate. Or I would just waste so much time thinking about what I was supposed to do next…
If my plan had looked more general, I wouldn’t be so efficient. For example, more general would be like this:
*Write a blog
*Two sessions with clients
This is a general plan for all the to-dos I mentioned above.
If I am not specific about what and when I am doing something, I would get distracted. I would check my phone more often. I would spend time staring and daydreaming (which is great, but not too much and too often. And not at the expense of getting the important things done.) I would call someone or let other people who wanted to talk to me on the phone distract me.
(For example: To write this article, I turned off my phone for 1 hour. When I turned it on again, I had missed calls from my mother and two of my friends. I also received several messages on social media.
Had I not followed my plan and turned off my phone, I would probably answer all of the calls and messages and spent 4 hours trying to finish this article.)
Segmentation of the day is a big part of being time management efficient.
You have enough time to do anything. If you don’t – that means you don’t know your priorities. Learn your priorities as soon as possible. Otherwise, you will get into many excuses.
Remember, for everything you would like to do, but you claim you don’t have time, there are some people in the world in the exact same life circumstances that can.
Single mothers with three children have a successful business and balanced family life.
There are people with health challenges writing books or hosting workshops and seminars.
Parents of babies and young children attend workshops and educational meetings.
Some people run multiple projects and businesses and still have time for family and friends. And they especially have time for their partner and for romance.
Some mothers are in a hospital with their children for several months, and they manage to write blogs from where they are.
There are busy parents worldwide who make the time to exercise 30 minutes every single day.
Some people are exactly your age and have the same life circumstances as you, and they read 10 to 20 books a year.
Stop saying you don’t have time!
You always have time for your priorities. Now your homoplay is to write down how you spend every day every hour. After one week, read it, and you will know what your priorities are.
You might be surprised to found out that you:
*Spend 2h a day on social media and YouTube.
*Talk 2-3 hours with family members and friends on the phone
*Watch 3h a day of tv and Netflix
*Spend 30 minutes every day thinking: what should we have for lunch today?
This is where you spend your time, and those are your priorities. Do you like your priorities?
So, change them.
Time management is a big subject in Kickstart to be in control of your life.
The next article will be about organizing your time for accomplishing what you want.