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How to Make Friends with Father Time

How to Make Friends with Father Time

Do you have trouble managing your time?

We’re all given the same 24 hours in a day, 168 hours in a week and approximately 672-744 hours in a month (give or take a couple of hours, depending on the length of the month). Depending on how you look at those numbers, it might seem as if there is a lot of time available to you or perhaps it may seem as if there is a very small amount of time for you to use.

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While you can’t physically change the amount of time in a day, week or month, the good news is that you can change your approach and attitude towards time.

Learning how to better manage your time is as simple as learning to view time as a friend, not a foe.  

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Follow the below tips to improve your relationship with good ol’ Papa Time to make the most of your time and get more things done.

How to Make Friends with Father Time

1. Put time into your relationship.

It takes time to grow any relationship, even with Father Time himself! Devote time to research new time management skills and techniques. You’ll also need a healthy dose of patience as you improve your relationship to time. Take it slow as you grow into your new role.

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2. Take a break and spend some time apart.

It might seem silly for me to tell you to take some time away from time, but it can be helpful take a break from your time management efforts. Learning how to better manage your time is one thing; become so preoccupied with the task that you forget or fail to do your work is another. Time management shouldn’t overwhelm, nor should it overcome your life. Review your schedule, learn new tips and tricks to better manage your calendar, but don’t let it become the only thing you do over the course of a day, week, or a month.

3. Be there for the good times… and the bad.

Are you a fair weather friend when it comes to time? Do you only celebrate your schedule or calendar when you have all the time you asked for or a whopping amount of free time? Life isn’t always about smooth moments; it’s also about the bumpy moments and how you make the most out of those bumpy moments. Be creative, resourceful and ask for help in your time of need. Be grateful for the time you do have available at your disposal, no matter how little time it may seem is available. One thing’s for certain, that time won’t be around tomorrow!

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4. Don’t point fingers.

It’s not healthy to put the blame on time for all the things you know you should have done in a timely fashion, be it running errands, finishing a report or picking up supplies for a party. Pointing fingers and insisting on whose fault it was only takes up the valuable time that you have available to you. It’s fine to be frustrated and annoyed, but let the moment pass and move on.

5. Remember that time will always be there for you.

As I mentioned earlier, Father Time gives you 24 hours in a day, 168 hours in a week and approximately 700 hours in a month. That’s quite a reliable friend on whom you can count! Why not strive to make the most out of your friend’s generosity? If something in your life doesn’t happen when you want it to happen (no matter how much you try to make it happen) give it time, take a break or take a moment to rest and relax. You can pick up with your work soon enough.

After reading this article, will you start improving your relationship with Father Time right away?

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Rashelle Isip

Blogger, Consultant, and Author

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Last Updated on September 11, 2019

Why To-Do Lists Don’t Work (And How to Change That)

Why To-Do Lists Don’t Work (And How to Change That)

How often do you feel overwhelmed and disorganized in life, whether at work or home? We all seem to struggle with time management in some area of our life; one of the most common phrases besides “I love you” is “I don’t have time”. Everyone suggests working from a to-do list to start getting your life more organized, but why do these lists also have a negative connotation to them?

Let’s say you have a strong desire to turn this situation around with all your good intentions—you may then take out a piece of paper and pen to start tackling this intangible mess with a to-do list. What usually happens, is that you either get so overwhelmed seeing everything on your list, which leaves you feeling worse than you did before, or you make the list but are completely stuck on how to execute it effectively.

To-do lists can work for you, but if you are not using them effectively, they can actually leave you feeling more disillusioned and stressed than you did before. Think of a filing system: the concept is good, but if you merely file papers away with no structure or system, the filing system will have an adverse effect. It’s the same with to-do lists—you can put one together, but if you don’t do it right, it is a fruitless exercise.

Why Some People Find That General To-Do Lists Don’t Work?

Most people find that general to-do lists don’t work because:

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  • They get so overwhelmed just by looking at all the things they need to do.
  • They don’t know how to prioritize the items on list.
  • They feel that they are continuously adding to their list but not reducing it.
  • There’s a sense of confusion seeing home tasks mixed with work tasks.

Benefits of Using a To-Do List

However, there are many advantages working from a to-do list:

  • You have clarity on what you need to get done.
  • You will feel less stressed because all your ‘to do’s are on paper and out of your mind.
  • It helps you to prioritize your actions.
  • You don’t overlook so many tasks and forget anything.
  • You feel more organized.
  • It helps you with planning.

4 Golden Rules to Make a To-Do List Work

Here are my golden rules for making a “to-do” list work:

1. Categorize

Studies have shown that your brain gets overwhelmed when it sees a list of 7 or 8 options; it wants to shut down.[1] For this reason, you need to work from different lists. Separate them into different categories and don’t have more than 7 or 8 tasks on each one.

It might work well for you to have a “project” list, a “follow-up” list, and a “don’t forget” list; you will know what will work best for you, as these titles will be different for everybody.

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2. Add Estimations

You don’t merely need to know what has to be done, but how long it will take as well in order to plan effectively.

Imagine on your list you have one task that will take 30 minutes, another that could take 1 hour, and another that could take 4 hours. You need to know the moment you look at the task, otherwise you undermine your planning, so add an extra column to your list and include your estimation of how long you think the task will take, and be realistic!

Tip: If you find it a challenge to estimate accurately, then start by building this skill on a daily basis. Estimate how long it will take to get ready, cook dinner, go for a walk, etc., and then compare this to the actual time it took you. You will start to get more accurate in your estimations.

3. Prioritize

To effectively select what you should work on, you need to take into consideration: priority, sequence and estimated time. Add another column to your list for priority. Divide your tasks into four categories:

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  • Important and urgent
  • Not urgent but important
  • Not important but urgent
  • Not important or urgent

You want to work on tasks that are urgent and important of course, but also, select some tasks that are important and not urgent. Why? Because these tasks are normally related to long-term goals, and when you only work on tasks that are urgent and important, you’ll feel like your day is spent putting out fires. You’ll end up neglecting other important areas which most often end up having negative consequences.

Most of your time should be spent on the first two categories.

4.  Review

To make this list work effectively for you, it needs to become a daily tool that you use to manage your time and you review it regularly. There is no point in only having the list to record everything that you need to do, but you don’t utilize it as part of your bigger time management plan.

For example: At the end of every week, review the list and use it to plan the week ahead. Select what you want to work on taking into consideration priority, time and sequence and then schedule these items into your calendar. Golden rule in planning: don’t schedule more than 75% of your time.

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Bottom Line

So grab a pen and paper and give yourself the gift of a calm and clear mind by unloading everything in there and onto a list as now, you have all the tools you need for it to work. Knowledge is useless unless it is applied—how badly do you want more time?

To your success!

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Featured photo credit: Emma Matthews via unsplash.com

Reference

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