The reality about large or daunting tasks is that they take time and it is often difficult to visualize the reward. Yet, by chunking your day into bite sized bits, you will give yourself a sense of control.
Define your relationship with time and how you want to improve your effectiveness by doing these five things.
1. Make a List. Recording tasks on a daily list and prioritizing what needs to be accomplished offers an instant inventory of to-do’s. When a task is accomplished, check it off or cross it off the list. The traditional method of doing this with pen and paper is tangible and liberating with every neat line. There are digital tools that allow you to do the same thing.
2. Prepare the Night Before. Start your list before going to bed. This will give you an inventory of what must be done and give space to the brain to rest at night. Making a quick inventory of next day needs will give you a road map for the day. Wake up to a list that will give you instant clarity.
3. Delegating. Assigning another person responsibility for specific tasks can save time and money. This shift in decision making can build skills, capitalize on the strengths of another, and motivate others toward a common cause. Providing feedback, direction and establishing expectations can increase accountability and performance.
4. Grouping Similar Tasks. One of the best ways to get through your list of to-do’s is by grouping similar tasks and then prioritizing. Keeping activities organized by priority and proximity can keep your energy moving in the right direction, add levity to your life, and help you to accomplish all the activities of a well lived day.
5. Ban Diversions and Distractions. Set a timer and stay focused for a given period of time. Keep in mind the average attention span is 10-12 minutes before your mind will wander. Managing your time and attention requires discipline, but will have a positive effect on your productivity. Give yourself a break and dangle a carrot at the end of the list of your to-do’s. Setting a personal reward system maintains incentive and encourages accomplishment.
Make a schedule, eliminate interruptions and plan your work day and down time so you have balance between work and play. Remember to assign a time limit for each task so you have control over your schedule and time.
Drawing a map of your daily tasks will eliminate the feeling of overwhelm and help you feel productive. Start today and develop a positive relationship with time.