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Five Tips To Improve Time Management

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Five Tips To Improve Time Management

Finding time to accomplish all of our daily activities can seem like a daunting task to complete. The world is full of distractions and useless information, and we must continuously distinguish what matters, as opposed to what is obsolete and meaningless. These tips will provide all of the tools you need to utilize; securing time for what holds importance.

1. Concentration

Responsibilities are part of our everyday lives, upholding them is vital to continuing a peaceful existence. Completing responsibilities on time cannot be achieved without the element of concentration. Letting your mind wander, procrastinating, and getting engulfed by distractions are a common occurrence, in this world of digital frenzy. Develop a mindset that focuses on one task at a time, devoting the entirety of your effort and enthusiasm towards finishing what you started. These simple practices will ensure that your time is being used wisely.

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2. Clarity

There are numerous methods to acquire clarity–and the most effective is when focus and dedication converge into a ball of shimmering, positive energy. Having a vast understanding of what’s required to reach a new milestone is having an approximate estimate on the amount of time it will take. These thoughts will manifest into ideas, which in turn, will increase performance. And once performance has been improved, there will be more time to use. The clearer your mind is, the easier it becomes to succeed–and none of us want to meander through life as a failure. The practicality of working smart is an assurance of clarity. Knowing how to use an hour for your benefit will always be more valuable than giving two hours away to a fruitless branch.

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3. Structure

Organization is the only option to advance on a daily basis. Write down a rough schedule in a notebook, so you have an outline that can be followed throughout the day. It doesn’t have to be a specific date or week, just be specific on the tasks at hand. Don’t make it harder than what it needs to be. Structure doesn’t entail any type of superhuman skills, or even take an abundance of effort–you must devote every hour to having a sense of purpose and constancy.

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4. Focus On The Present

The past already went by, it shouldn’t be a place you choose to reside in or dwell on with sorrow. Reflection is designed solely to see how far you’ve come, the hardships you conquered, and the blessings received. The time is now; this is where all of the power is channeled. Be conscious of what you do in the moment, this is a direct indicator of how your future will turn out. The greatest gift given is taking advantage of the present, by unraveling the strands of time, with the thoughts of wanting more. Satisfaction and comfort aren’t a catalyst for optimal use of the present. Hunger is the drive that oils the wheels of your car. Hit the road, expect bumps, turns, and the occasional highway, but never lose hunger or you will run out of gas.

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5. Imagine The Future

Having a vision is the capability to see yourself in a position of higher status in the future. Looking forward to the future is all about your focus on the present. Working from A-Z is the only route to take, but understanding the process from Z-A will get you where you want to be much faster. Swiftness is an ability everyone can produce, but we all move at different paces, so respecting the process is necessary.

Time management is the only lane to progress, and we hope these insights will get you where you need to be.

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Last Updated on October 21, 2021

How to Create Your Own Ritual to Conquer Time Wasters and Laziness

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How to Create Your Own Ritual to Conquer Time Wasters and Laziness

Life is wasted in the in-between times. The time between when your alarm first rings and when you finally decide to get out of bed. The time between when you sit at your desk and when productive work begins. The time between making a decision and doing something about it.

Slowly, your day is whittled away from all the unused in-between moments. Eventually, time wasters, laziness, and procrastination get the better of you.

The solution to reclaim these lost middle moments is by creating rituals. Every culture on earth uses rituals to transfer information and encode behaviors that are deemed important. Personal rituals can help you build a better pattern for handling everything from how you wake up to how you work.

Unfortunately, when most people see rituals, they see pointless superstitions. Indeed, many rituals are based on a primitive understanding of the world. But by building personal rituals, you get to encode the behaviors you feel are important and cut out the wasted middle moments.

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Program Your Own Algorithms

Another way of viewing rituals is by seeing them as computer algorithms. An algorithm is a set of instructions that is repeated to get a result.

Some algorithms are highly efficient, sorting or searching millions of pieces of data in a few seconds. Other algorithms are bulky and awkward, taking hours to do the same task.

By forming rituals, you are building algorithms for your behavior. Take the delayed and painful pattern of waking up, debating whether to sleep in for another two minutes, hitting the snooze button, repeat until almost late for work. This could be reprogrammed to get out of bed immediately, without debating your decision.

How to Form a Ritual

I’ve set up personal rituals for myself for handling e-mail, waking up each morning, writing articles, and reading books. Far from making me inflexible, these rituals give me a useful default pattern that works best 99% of the time. Whenever my current ritual won’t work, I’m always free to stop using it.

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Forming a ritual isn’t too difficult, and the same principles for changing habits apply:

  1. Write out your sequence of behavior. I suggest starting with a simple ritual of only 3-4 steps maximum. Wait until you’ve established a ritual before you try to add new steps.
  2. Commit to following your ritual for thirty days. This step will take the idea and condition it into your nervous system as a habit.
  3. Define a clear trigger. When does your ritual start? A ritual to wake up is easy—the sound of your alarm clock will work. As for what triggers you to go to the gym, read a book or answer e-mail—you’ll have to decide.
  4. Tweak the Pattern. Your algorithm probably won’t be perfectly efficient the first time. Making a few tweaks after the first 30-day trial can make your ritual more useful.

Ways to Use a Ritual

Based on the above ideas, here are some ways you could implement your own rituals:

1. Waking Up

Set up a morning ritual for when you wake up and the next few things you do immediately afterward. To combat the grogginess after immediately waking up, my solution is to do a few pushups right after getting out of bed. After that, I sneak in ninety minutes of reading before getting ready for morning classes.

2. Web Usage

How often do you answer e-mail, look at Google Reader, or check Facebook each day? I found by taking all my daily internet needs and compressing them into one, highly-efficient ritual, I was able to cut off 75% of my web time without losing any communication.

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3. Reading

How much time do you get to read books? If your library isn’t as large as you’d like, you might want to consider the rituals you use for reading. Programming a few steps to trigger yourself to read instead of watching television or during a break in your day can chew through dozens of books each year.

4. Friendliness

Rituals can also help with communication. Set up a ritual of starting a conversation when you have opportunities to meet people.

5. Working

One of the hardest barriers when overcoming procrastination is building up a concentrated flow. Building those steps into a ritual can allow you to quickly start working or continue working after an interruption.

6. Going to the gym

If exercising is a struggle, encoding a ritual can remove a lot of the difficulty. Set up a quick ritual for going to exercise right after work or when you wake up.

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7. Exercise

Even within your workouts, you can have rituals. Spacing the time between runs or reps with a certain number of breaths can remove the guesswork. Forming a ritual of doing certain exercises in a particular order can save time.

8. Sleeping

Form a calming ritual in the last 30-60 minutes of your day before you go to bed. This will help slow yourself down and make falling asleep much easier. Especially if you plan to get up full of energy in the morning, it will help if you remove insomnia.

8. Weekly Reviews

The weekly review is a big part of the GTD system. By making a simple ritual checklist for my weekly review, I can get the most out of this exercise in less time. Originally, I did holistic reviews where I wrote my thoughts on the week and progress as a whole. Now, I narrow my focus toward specific plans, ideas, and measurements.

Final Thoughts

We all want to be productive. But time wasters, procrastination, and laziness sometimes get the better of us. If you’re facing such difficulties, don’t be afraid to make use of these rituals to help you conquer them.

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Featured photo credit: RODOLFO BARRETO via unsplash.com

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