Manage your TIme
During one of the breakout sessions at the 2016 PA Conference for Women in Philadelphia, Laura Vanderkam, author of I Know How She Does It, spoke about time management and life balance. Her advice can make the difference between just hanging on and possibly feeling like you are "having it all".
Here are her 7 time management strategies:
- Mind your hours. By tracking your time for a week, you can see the reality of how you are spending your days. This is an exercise that is valuable but most people resist it. Once you have documented and totaled time spent by category (driving, cooking, social media, phone calls, projects, admin, household chores etc), you can do an assessment. What do you like most about your schedule? What should be taken off?
- Look forward. Imagine it's the end of 2017. Looking back, what goals would you like to have accomplished? Once identified, outline the tasks that will get you to those goals so you can focus your time on those things.
- First things first. Time is a choice. Choose to fill your time with things that deserve your attention. We feel we don't have time to fill-in-the-blank (exercise, sleep, see our friends) but if something urgent occurred (i.e., your washer overflowed or a loved one became ill), you'd find the time to attend to these priorities. Don't wait for an emergency to take control of your time. Plan weekly and be sure to allocate time to career, relationships and self.
- Move the tiles around. Rather than looking at only the 24 hours of each day, look at the full 168 hours of a week. You can create a mosaic of sorts with 168 tiles. This allows you flexibility on timing. Laura gave the example of having an 'exercise tile' at lunchtime one day, in the evening another day and in the morning another day.
- Build space into lives. Everything takes longer than you think. By adding a cushion around your appointments, you eliminate the stress of rushing and being late. Laura also suggested you be careful with the word 'yes'. Be sure you are spending your time on your agenda, not someone else's priorities. Regularly step back to look at your calendar to eliminate anything that you really don't want to do or doesn't have to happen.
- Take care of self. Sleeping and exercise will "make" time rather than "take" time. Your brain needs to take healthy breaks and your body needs to reenergize so you can perform at your best.
- Use bits of time. Small moments have great impact. Use an extra 10 minutes to meditate, read a story to your kids or get advice from your mentor.
If regaining your time and reducing overwhelm are important to you, create an account on our digital training platform HERE so you can be notified when we launch our new program, 7 Days to Sanity.