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7 Secrets Of Time Management Everyone Would Want To Know

7 Secrets Of Time Management Everyone Would Want To Know
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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 Schroeder

Michelle is a personal finance expert. She earns $1 million per year while sailing.

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Last Updated on July 21, 2021

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to Make a Reminder Works for You

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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