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12 Real Reasons Some People Never Seem to Have Enough Time

12 Real Reasons Some People Never Seem to Have Enough Time

Many people today complain that they constantly don’t have enough time. They are so busy that they don’t have time for their families, work tasks, kids, friends, etc. At the same time, there are lots of people who have the same number of responsibilities or even more, but they manage to do everything in time and still find a couple of hours to relax and do what they like. People who always lack time are probably do something wrong. Here’s why.

1. They don’t sleep right

Sleeping is one of the most important things for a healthy and successful life. If your sleeping hours are chaotic and irregular, you probably find yourself not having enough time for some things during the day. Scheduling your sleep can be the perfect solution here. Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day and you may see the difference soon.  The earlier you wake up, the more time you have before work to get ready, eat and spend some time on yourself.

2. They don’t say “no”

People who agree to help everyone don’t usually have much time left for themselves. If someone asks you for a favor, think if you have time for this and whether it will be good for you. I’m not saying you should turn everyone down and be selfish. However, your personal goals, plans, and desires should be a priority.

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3. They don’t work out

Many people don’t work out because they think they don’t have time for that. However, it is proven that physical activities make our brains work faster and better. Thus, after a good workout, you will be able to finish your tasks much quicker and maybe even better. Plus, you’ll be in good shape.

4. They don’t make to-do-lists

Planning is the key to success. If your days are not organized, you lose a lot of time on deciding what to do next, choosing which task to start with, procrastinating, etc. Make a to-do-list every day and before going to sleep, check if you managed to do everything. If you can, plan your day by hours. Then you won’t forget anything; you’ll do everything in time and procrastinate less.

5. They don’t eat right

Healthy eating can actually help you with the lack of time. If you eat on schedule and the products are healthy yet nutritious, you won’t spend time on numerous snacks between meals and your body won’t spend too much energy on digesting difficult food. So you will be more energized and productive.

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6. They don’t get themselves in the right mood

Tons of researches have proved that optimists do better at work, tests, contests, etc. If you don’t put yourself in the right mood, you’ll procrastinate more and do less with your time. Try to start your working day calm and focus on the important tasks. You can use pleasant morning habits to improve your spirit such as drinking your favorite coffee or listening to positive music.

7. They don’t eliminate distractions

Have you ever noticed how much time you spend on social networks, reading news, chatting with colleagues, answering calls, helping new colleagues understand the work, etc. Distractions are what stop you from getting things done fast and right. If you were sitting in a closed room with nothing but your task, you’d probably deal with it quite quickly. But you cannot create such a room, so create a system. Choose at least two hours per day when you cannot be disturbed at all. Turn off your phone, close all the entertainment sites, put on your headphones and ask your colleagues not to disturb you. You will do more in these two hours than you do in a day with all those distractions.

8. They don’t have specific goals

If you don’t know where you are going to, you make a lot of detours and stops. Having a clear goal in your head can help you move faster towards it. The important thing is not to make this goal too abstract. Instead of having a goal of becoming rich, have a goal to finish your big project by the end of the year. A good idea is to have smaller goals along with that big one, such as to lose a couple of pounds by the end of the month or to start riding a bike to work instead of a car. Start small, but think big.

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9. They take too many tasks

Multitasking can be great sometimes. But if you have many tasks and you want to do all of them right, don’t try to do them all at once. You’ll miss something, you’ll make mistakes, and you won’t do the best you can and as a result, you will have to correct mistakes and redo some things. That will take much more time than you can spend doing everything right from the first try. Take 1-2 tasks at a time and do your best with them.

10. They check their e-mails way too often

If you’re waiting for a very important letter and check your e-mail every hour, it is one thing. However, doing it first thing in the morning is definitely not right. It distracts you from your plans, goals and intentions. Don’t check your personal e-mails more than three times a day and definitely try not to do it for at least a couple of hours after you wake up.

11. They are not organized

Good preparations and planning is the key to saving time. Some people spend too much time in the morning getting ready, cooking breakfast, and collecting their things. However, you can do half of those things in the evening and save yourself a lot of time. You can decide what you’ll wear and iron some clothes; you can put all the things you’ll need in your bag, you can pre-cook an easy meal for the morning, etc.

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12. They don’t use their free time productively

All of us have some things that we love to do no matter if they don’t bring us much use. This time can still be used with some benefit. If you cannot but watch a TV show in the evening, do some exercising while watching it; thus, you can skip the gym and do what you really want to do not wasting time. If you love drawing, for example, turn on some educational podcasts or foreign language audio-courses; even if you don’t listen to that very attentively, you still hear and learn something. Try to combine such things and you’ll have some more time.

Featured photo credit: Time flies/Hartwig HKD via flickr.com

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Last Updated on December 9, 2019

7 Techniques to Stay Focused and Avoid Distractions

7 Techniques to Stay Focused and Avoid Distractions

The world has become a very distracting place, you don’t need me to tell you that. Where once we could walk out of our house or office and disappear into our own world with our own thoughts, we are now connected 24 hours a day to a network that’s sole purpose is to make us available to anyone and everyone at any time they choose to disturb us.

Of course, it is very easy to sit here and say all you have to do is turn off your electronic devices and just allow yourself several hours of quiet solitude; but the reality is far harder than that. There is an expectation that we are available for anyone whenever they want us.

However, if you do want to elevate yourself and perform at your best every day, to produce work of a higher quality than anyone expects and to regain control over what you do and when you will need to regain some control over your time, so you can focus on producing work that matters to you…

The good news: You do not have to become a recluse. All you need are a few simple strategies that will allow you enough flexibility in your day to stay focused to do the work that matters and still allow you to deal with other people’s crises and dramas.

Here are 7 ways you can stay focused and be less distracted.

1. Find out When You Are at Your Most Focused

According to research, brilliantly documented by Daniel Pink in his latest book, When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing, our brains have a limited capacity to stay focused each day.[1]

From the moment we wake up to the time we turn in for the day, we are using up our brain’s limited energy resources and, depending on the time of day, we will be moving between strong concentration and low concentration.

This means that for most people, their optimum time for sustained concentration and focus will be soon after they wake up. For others, it could be later in the evening—a kind of second wind—but that is rare.

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Once you understand this, you can take time to learn when you are at your best and to protect that time on your calendar as much as possible. If you can, block it off and use that time for the work you need to do that requires the most concentration each day.

2. Get Comfortable Using ‘Do Not Disturb’ Mode

We have the ability to switch our electronic devices to do not disturb mode. Where all notifications are off and your phone or computer will not alert you to a new email or message.

Now after testing this function for a number of years, I can happily report that it does work.

When I sat down to write this article, I put all my electronic devices to do not disturb, closed down my email and began writing. I am safe in the knowledge that until this article is written, and I turn do not disturb off, there will be no interruptions or distractions.

Of course, it is not really about whether do not disturb works or not, it is whether you are willing to turn it on or not.

Most people believe they have to be constantly available for their boss or customers. This is not true at all. What has happened is because of your always available status, you have conditioned these people to turn to you first whenever they have a problem.

You are not actually helping them at all. You are preventing them from having to think for themselves and develop the skill of problem-solving. By not being so readily available, you help them a lot more.

What it comes down to is your boss and customers are going to be far more positive with you, if you deliver your work to the highest quality and on time than you being available 24/7. Trust me on that. I also tested that one.

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3. Schedule Focus Time Every Day

This technique is a lot easier than you may think.

First, you figure out when you are least likely to be disturbed. For me, that is between 6 and 9 am. for a lot of my clients, they find the first 90 minutes in the morning at their workplace is when they are not likely to be disturbed. This is important because you want to be building consistency.

Most people start their day by checking their email and other messages. While they are doing that, they are not going to be bothering you. Now there is no rule about when you should be checking your email. The chances are email is not going to be where you want to spend your most focused time, so you can decide to check your email at say 10:30 am.

Dedicate 30 minutes from 10:30 am to 11:00 am for email processing and use the first 90 minutes of your day for doing your most important work. You will surprise yourself by how much work you get done in that ninety minutes.

4. Plan Your Day the Night Before

One of the inevitabilities of life is there is always a plan for the day. The choice is whether the plan you have is a plan of your own making or not. If you don’t have a plan, then the day will take control of you. Other people’s priorities, urgencies and dramas will fill your day. As the late Jim Rohn said:

“Either you run the day or the day runs you.”

If you take control and make it a habit to plan out what you want to accomplish the next day before you go to bed, you will find yourself staying more focused on your work and be less likely disturbed.

Now when I say plan your day the night before, I do not mean you need to spend an hour or so planning and mapping out every minute of the day. Planning your day should only take you around 10 to 15 minutes and you only need to decide what 10 things you want to complete — 2 “must do” objective tasks and 8 “would like to do” tasks. What I call the 2+8 Prioritisation Technique:

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Do not be tempted to go beyond 10 tasks for the day. When you do that, you do not have enough flexibility in your day to handle crises and other unknown issues that will pop up throughout the day.

When you do not build in flexibility, you will soon stop planning your day. Only plan tasks that will have the biggest positive impact on your work and projects.

5. Learn to Say “No”

I am sure you’ve been told this before. We are wired to please and this results in us wanting to say yes to every opportunity that comes our way. The problem is we cannot do everything and every time you say “yes” to one opportunity, you are saying “no” to another opportunity. You cannot be in two places at the same time.

Jay Shetty shared an inspiring video on JOMO “Joy Of Missing Out”. Here’s the video:

Rather than allowing ourselves to be succumbed by FOMO (the Fear Of Missing Out), we should replace that ‘fear’ with the “joy” of missing out. Because of our need to please, we say yes to things we really don’t want to do; yet when we do that, we miss out on doing things that bring us joy—creating something special, spending time educating ourselves and just having some quiet alone time with ourselves.

Learn to say “no” every time you get a notification to your phone. Ignore it. Learn to say “no” to your colleagues when they want to gossip. Learn to say “no” to volunteering when the thing you are being asked to volunteer for does not excite you. Just learn to say “no”.

By saying “no” to opportunities, distractions and interruptions, you are saying yes to better and more meaningful things. Things you do want to focus your attention on.

6. Create a Distraction-Free Environment for Your Focused Time

This has been possibly the most powerful tip I learned when it comes to focusing on what is important. Have a place where you do only focused, high-concentration work.

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Now this place needs to be clean and only have the tools you need to do your work. If it is writing a report or preparing a presentation, then it needs a table and a computer, nothing more. Files, paper and other detritus that accumulates on and around people’s desks need to go. A clean, cool and well-lit environment is going to do a lot more for your focus and concentration than anything else.

The dining table in our home is where I go for undisturbed, focussed work. I take my laptop or iPad, and only have my writing app open. Everything is closed down and the computer is in “do not disturb” mode. There is nothing else on the dining table just my computer and my water tumbler.

Because that is my designated focus area, I only go there to work when I have something that needs total focus and concentration. I am there right now!

7. Be Intentional

The reality is, if you absolutely need to get something done then you need to be intentional. You have to have the intention of sitting down, focusing and doing the work.

There’s no magic tricks or apps that will miraculously do all your work for you. You need to intentionally set aside time for undisturbed focus work and do it. Without that intention, you can read as many of these articles as you like and you still will not get the work done.

It is only when you intentionally set yourself up to do the work, turn off all notifications and do whatever it takes to avoid distractions will the work get done.

The Bottom Line

The strategies and tips I shared in this post will go a long way to helping you become better at focusing on the important things in your life. No matter what they are, you are in control of your time and what you do with it and where you spend it, never give that control away to anyone else.

Protect it and it will be your servant. Give that control away and it will become your master and that is not a good place to be.

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Featured photo credit: Manny Pantoja via unsplash.com

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