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7 Secrets Of Time Management Everyone Would Want To Know

7 Secrets Of Time Management Everyone Would Want To Know

If you can effectively manage your time, then you have probably found the secrets of time management. Effectively managing your time means that you can get more done, and possibly reach your goals even quicker.

Read further to learn the 7 secrets of time management.

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1. Make room for your important and urgent tasks first.

Do you have items that need to be done first? Do what needs to be done first so that you don’t have to spend extra time worrying about it later. Also, knocking out the more difficult items in the beginning means that you may be able to spend more time relaxing later because you will know that you got the hard stuff out of the way. You never know if something that urgently needs to be done takes longer than expected, causing you to postpone the less urgent tasks.

2. Make a schedule.

Without a schedule, it would be hard to be able to effectively manage your time. Lay out a schedule of when you will do different things. Also, make sure that you have a schedule for when each task needs to be done and what exactly needs to be done. Having everything written out can help you because you won’t have to spend time wondering about whether or not you forgot about something.

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3. Turn off your social media accounts.

If you are like me, then you probably have a tab open for your Facebook or Twitter account. If you find yourself constantly clicking over and just thinking to yourself “Oh, I will just check my Facebook account for any new updates for just one second,” please stop kidding yourself. One little chat notification can turn into an hour-long conversation. This is such a time drain. Prevent yourself from looking at your social media accounts entirely. You will be able to get so much more done if you just close out your social media accounts entirely while you are trying to work.

4. Remove yourself from time-suckers.

There are probably other things in your life that suck up your time. Maybe you are a master procrastinator. I sometimes find myself wanting to clean, eat food, watch television and so on when I really need to get things done. Remove yourself completely from these situations. Usually a designated office (whether that be in your house or you subletting an office for yourself), there are many ways to remove yourself from time-sucking situations.

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5. Learn how to say “No.”

If you have too much on your plate, then you need to learn how to say “No” occasionally. You need to weigh whether or not you can take on all of the work that is given to you. Yes, agreeing to take on more work can have it’s positives. However, if you are lowering the quality of your work so that you can take on more work, then you may want to reevaluate your plan and see if that is truly working for you.

6. Allow others to help you.

If you have too much work to realistically handle, then you may want to ask others for their help. Not everything has to be done entirely by you. You could ask others to help take the load off of you, or you could possibly even hire an assistant if that is allowable in your budget or by your company.

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7. Don’t multi-task if you waste more time doing so.

Some people are great with multi-tasking, but some are not. If you are one of those people who is horrible at multi-tasking, then you should stop and learn how to designate all of your time to one thing so that you can accomplish tasks more quickly.

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Michelle S.

Founder of Making Sense of Cents, a blog about personal finance and traveling.

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Last Updated on November 15, 2019

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, why?

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]

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.

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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.

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.

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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.

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?

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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.

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.

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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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