Don’t Waste Your Life: How to Manage Time So That You Don’t

Posted on May 11, 2016

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As Mary Oliver so pointedly asks, “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

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We get one shot at this life. A lifetime is filled with many minutes, hours, and days. How are you spending them?

Chances are you struggle with how to most effectively use time. We all do. Or, maybe you are good at using time . . . during certain parts of your day. But what about when you get home from the office, kick off your shoes, flip on the television, and realize two hours later you haven’t gotten up? Do you feel good about that use of time?

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In today’s blog post, we’ve provided some tools that have helped us become better time managers. We aren’t perfect, but we’re always growing. We’d love to hear some of your best tips for time management in the comments below.

  1. Set small, achievable goals every day.
    Everyday I start my day with a list of tasks and a time-frame to accomplish them in. I split the day into sections: morning / afternoon / evening / etc. Each of these time-frames has specific goals I have to achieve before moving on.
  2. Use a timer.
    Give yourself a specific amount of time to be fully engaged with a specific task and set the timer. You’ll be amazed at how much more focused you’re able to be.
  3. Plan ahead.
    At the end of each week, outline the next week’s goals. Put them on the calendar. Google calendar just released a Google Goals to help with this very thing.
  4. Write yourself notes to refer back to.
    Evernote is a great app for jotting down To-Dos when they come to mind. I am religious about writing things down when they pop into my head. Then later, in the time I’ve set aside to handle these things, I am able to pull them back up and address them then. This removes a considerable amount of anxiety that I’m forgetting something.
  5. Do some tasks every day.
    There are some things in your routine that are better taken care of through daily maintenance. My friends tease me because of this, but every single day I do one small load of laundry. For me, it keeps things from feeling like they’re overwhelming and piling up. What task would help you if you took care of it in small, bite-sized chunks every day?
  6. Don’t check email before you go to bed or when you first wake up.
    It’s vital to give your brain (and heart!) a break from taking care of tasks. This will also help with restful sleep at night.

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     7. Be intentional and reflective about setting an overarching life goal.
Bill Gates said, “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to be doing the things I’m doing today?” All of     your daily tasks should be working toward the lifelong goal you’ve been so intentional about setting.

Don’t waste your one wild and precious life. Fill your minutes, days, hours–your lifetime–intentionally pursuing what you really love. Let us know how we can help.

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