Good time management is essential for coping with the pressures of modern life without experiencing too much stress.
If you never have enough time to finish your tasks, better time management will help you regain control of your day.
Good time management doesn't mean you do more work. It means you focus on the tasks that matter and will make a difference. Whether it’s in your job or your lifestyle as a whole, learning how to manage your time effectively will help you feel more relaxed, focused and in control.
“The aim of good time management is to achieve the lifestyle balance you want,” says Emma Donaldson-Feilder, a chartered occupational psychologist.
Here are her top tips for better time management:
Work out your goals
This first step towards improving your time management is to ask yourself some questions. “Work out who you want to be, your priorities in life, and what you want to achieve in your career or personal life,” says Donaldson-Feilder. “That is then the guiding principle for how you spend your time and how you manage it.”
Once you have worked out the big picture, even if it's quite general, you can then work out some short-term and medium-term goals. “Knowing your goals will help you plan better and focus on the things that will help you achieve those goals,” says Donaldson-Feilder.
Make a list
A common time-management mistake is trying to remember too many details, leading to information overload. A better way to stay organised and take control of your projects and tasks is to use a to-do list to write things down.
“Try it and see what works best for you,” says Donaldson-Feilder. She prefers to keep a single to-do list, to avoid losing track of multiple lists. “Keeping a list will help you work out your priorities and timings, so it can help you put off the non-urgent tasks.”
Work smarter, not harder
Good time management at work means doing high-quality work, not high quantity.