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8 Rules Successful People Live By to Make Their Time Well Spent

8 Rules Successful People Live By to Make Their Time Well Spent

Always short on time and behind on tasks? Is your productivity getting affected since there are only 24 hours in a day? Then what you need are effective time management skills perfected by the biggies of the corporate and celebrity world. For these are the people who manage to do so much more, in the same amount of time as everybody else.

One View Successful People Commonly Share — Time Is the Most Valuable Commodity

Successful people know that time is as essential and valuable a commodity as is money – so they use it wisely and well. Time that is wasted can never come back – each minute should be utilized wisely for that makes all the difference in you having an excellently productive day or not.[1]

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Time management is essential if you want to finish the day’s work and chores in an orderly manner, not have any guilt over “wastage” and even have enough free time left over to spend with family, friends or even with yourself.

8 Time Management Rules That Successful People Follow

Maintain a Time Log

When you embark on a fitness of weight loss regime, nutritionists and dieticians often advise that you keep a food and workout log – to note down all that you ate in a day, the quantity of what you ate and even the fitness regime for that day. Similarly, successful businesspersons often advise that you start a time management program by maintaining a time log – this will tell you how you used your time and where all are you wasting it – it may make you feel a bit like a slacker, but it will ultimately help you give your work day proper direction and help you answer that nagging question “where is my time going?”[2]

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Get Some Workout in the Morning

Richard Branson, the super famous, filthy rich celebrity-cum-corporate honcho gets up at 5 am to work out and claims that his morning fitness regime helps him have a super-productive day. And he’s not wrong – working out in the morning keeps you mentally sharp and physically active through the day – and you also get the feel good of the exercise high since the endorphins aka happy hormones flood your system and also are on a high since you did something positive for yourself early in the morning! [3]

Decide on a Must-Do List

Entrepreneur and CNBC’s The Profit star Marcus Lemonis has another great tip to offer his audience – he makes a must-do list every morning – though he calls it his knockout list. And he of course has card in his basement closet specially made for this, and after he has done his five things of the day that simply cannot be put off, if he has the time, he does more. And the card of the day is turned into a paper plane once the tasks are all done… So the gist for you remains the same, though you don’t need custom-made cards – a simply notebook, planner or even diary would suffice, and you don’t have to make paper planes out if it either – do your own quirk instead. [4]

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Do Difficult Tasks in the Morning

There are things – call them tasks, call them chores or call them bores – that we all tend to groan and moan about and put off till the very last minute. These are the tasks that you should tackle the first thing in the morning itself when you are fresh, sharp and not jaded by what the day has brought you. Do what you find boring and uninterested first, the rest of the day is likely to be much more interesting and fun for you to go through – if you keep putting off those tasks they are likely to take up a lot of time when you finally get around to doing them. Morning is the time your willpower is at your highest – so a good time to tackle what would normally take you a lot of dithering to finish.[5]

Make Work Interesting

Jack Groetzinger, co-founder and CEO of SeatGeek makes his tasks fun by gamifying them. He has written a software that calculates how much time it takes him to do something – say writing an e-mail and maintains a daily log of the same. Each day, he tries to break his own record by doing the same thing faster, even if it’s just by a few seconds. And while not all of us are tech-inclined enough to do the same, there are not plenty of apps available that literally map your time, and help you finish your work faster – by using regular reminders, or even screen alarms.[6]

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Concentrate on Core Competencies

What you don’t know well, will take you time to do. We are all are great at a few things, but not-so-great or inclined at others. Make sure that when it comes to time management skills, you tackle the work that falls within your core competencies the most, instead of doing stuff that you first have to learn, err or that is simply not up your alley. This is not to say that you shouldn’t learn something new or try something that you haven’t before, but keep that restricted to your free or leisure time. Bill Smith, founder and CEO of Shipt says that as much as he’d like to do everything by himself, he’s much rather delegate stuff to competent employees so that he is free to do what he is best at – oversee and direct.[7]

Use Your Free Time, Plan Your Breaks

Arianna Huffington, author and entrepreneur takes breaks during the day, especially for meals and believes that taking “pauses” boosts productivity and decreases stress. Similarly, Daymond John, founder and CEO of FUBU and entrepreneur tries to maximize him time – if he’s travelling, he doesn’t snooze away his time. Instead he’ll do his e-mails… So when you get free time, use that to your advantage instead of whiling it away. And your breaks need to be planned as well – you can use a bit of free time to plan ahead and take some deliberate breaks to refresh yourself at work as well.[8]

Plan a Good Weekend

Nick Huzar, the founder and CEO of OfferUp, prioritizes some alone time on Sundays to refocus himself and his work. His breaks are planned and used to plan his week ahead. On the flip side, planning a good weekend also works and will help you stave off that I-have-wasted-my-free-time depressing feeling. Plan three to five anchor events that give you the positive feeling that the weekend was spent well, instead that a weekend merely happened. Go for a run, or a weekend trip, or a movie or even a family picnic. Spend your free time constructively instead of being just a boring homebody.[9]

So basically, learn from the experts as to how they manage to accomplish a lot more than others, in the same amount of time. The day is the same 24 hours for everyone – but time management makes all the difference in what all you are able to do in it… [10]

Reference

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Rima Pundir

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Last Updated on March 25, 2020

How Do You Change a Habit (According to Psychology)

How Do You Change a Habit (According to Psychology)

Habits are hard to kill, and rightly so. They are a part and parcel of your personality traits and mold your character.

However, habits are not always something over-the-top and quirky enough to get noticed. Think of subtle habits like tapping fingers when you are nervous and humming songs while you drive. These are nothing but ingrained habits that you may not realize easily.

Just take a few minutes and think of something specific that you do all the time. You will notice how it has become a habit for you without any explicit realization. Everything you do on a daily basis starting with your morning routine, lunch preferences to exercise routines are all habits.

Habits mostly form from life experiences and certain observed behaviors, not all of them are healthy. Habitual smoking can be dangerous to your health. Similarly, a habit could also make you lose out on enjoying something to its best – like how some people just cannot stop swaying their bodies when delivering a speech.

Thus, there could be a few habits that you would want to change about yourself. But changing habits is not as easy as it seems.

In this article, you will learn why it isn’t easy to build new habits, and how to change habits.

What Makes It Hard To Change A Habit?

To want to change a particular habit means to change something very fundamental about your behavior.[1] Hence, it’s necessary to understand how habits actually form and why they are so difficult to actually get out of.

The Biology

Habits form in a place what we call the subconscious mind in our brain.[2]

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Our brains have two modes of operation. The first one is an automatic pilot kind of system that is fast and works on reflexes often. It is what we call the subconscious part. This is the part that is associated with everything that comes naturally to you.

The second mode is the conscious mode where every action and decision is well thought out and follows a controlled way of thinking.

A fine example to distinguish both would be to consider yourself learning to drive or play an instrument. For the first time you try learning, you think before every movement you make. But once you have got the hang of it, you might drive without applying much thought into it.

Both systems work together in our brains at all times. When a habit is formed, it moves from the conscious part to the subconscious making it difficult to control.

So, the key idea in deconstructing a habit is to go from the subconscious to the conscious.

Another thing you have to understand about habits is that they can be conscious or hidden.

Conscious habits are those that require active input from your side. For instance, if you stop setting your alarm in the morning, you will stop waking up at the same time.

Hidden habits, on the other hand, are habits that we do without realizing. These make up the majority of our habits and we wouldn’t even know them until someone pointed them out. So the first difficulty in breaking these habits is to actually identify them. As they are internalized, they need a lot of attention to detail for self-identification. That’s not all.

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Habits can be physical, social, and mental, energy-based and even be particular to productivity. Understanding them is necessary to know why they are difficult to break and what can be done about them.

The Psychology

Habits get engraved into our memories depending on the way we think, feel and act over a particular period of time. The procedural part of memory deals with habit formation and studies have observed that various types of conditioning of behavior could affect your habit formations.

Classical conditioning or pavlovian conditioning is when you start associating a memory with reality.[3] A dog that associates ringing bell to food will start salivating. The same external stimuli such as the sound of church bells can make a person want to pray.

Operant conditioning is when experience and the feelings associated with it form a habit.[4] By encouraging or discouraging an act, individuals could either make it a habit or stop doing it.

Observational learning is another way habits could take form. A child may start walking the same way their parent does.

What Can You Do To Change a Habit?

Sure, habits are hard to control but it is not impossible. With a few tips and hard-driven dedication, you can surely get over your nasty habits.

Here are some ways that make use of psychological findings to help you:

1. Identify Your Habits

As mentioned earlier, habits can be quite subtle and hidden from your view. You have to bring your subconscious habits to an aware state of mind. You could do it by self-observation or by asking your friends or family to point out the habit for your sake.

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2. Find out the Impact of Your Habit

Every habit produces an effect – either physical or mental. Find out what exactly it is doing to you. Does it help you relieve stress or does it give you some pain relief?

It could be anything simple. Sometimes biting your nails could be calming your nerves. Understanding the effect of a habit is necessary to control it.

3. Apply Logic

You don’t need to be force-fed with wisdom and advice to know what an unhealthy habit could do to you.

Late-night binge-watching just before an important presentation is not going to help you. Take a moment and apply your own wisdom and logic to control your seemingly nastily habits.

4. Choose an Alternative

As I said, every habit induces some feeling. So, it could be quite difficult to get over it unless you find something else that can replace it. It can be a simple non-harming new habit that you can cultivate to get over a bad habit.

Say you have the habit of banging your head hard when you are angry. That’s going to be bad for you. Instead, the next time you are angry, just take a deep breath and count to 10. Or maybe start imagining yourself on a luxury yacht. Just think of something that will work for you.

5. Remove Triggers

Get rid of items and situations that can trigger your bad habit.

Stay away from smoke breaks if you are trying to quit it. Remove all those candy bars from the fridge if you want to control your sweet cravings.

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6. Visualize Change

Our brains can be trained to forget a habit if we start visualizing the change. Serious visualization is retained and helps as a motivator in breaking the habit loop.

For instance, to replace your habit of waking up late, visualize yourself waking up early and enjoying the early morning jog every day. By continuing this, you would naturally feel better to wake up early and do your new hobby.

7. Avoid Negative Talks and Thinking

Just as how our brain is trained to accept a change in habit, continuous negative talk and thinking could hamper your efforts put into breaking a habit.

Believe you can get out of it and assert yourself the same.

Final Thoughts

Changing habits isn’t easy, so do not expect an overnight change!

Habits took a long time to form. It could take a while to completely break out of it. You will have to accept that sometimes you may falter in your efforts. Don’t let negativity seep in when it seems hard. Keep going at it slowly and steadily.

More About Changing Habits

Featured photo credit: Mel via unsplash.com

Reference

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