The classic adage “time is money” oftentimes gets underestimated or forgotten. Minds can simply trail off, people can find overconfidence in slight procrastination, or other tasks pop up to distract them from other responsibilities. Those incidents correlate directly to the deceitful paradox that time moves slowly in the present yet appears to have flown by in the past.
Losing track of time both in your professional and personal life can quite literally cost you money. Professional life has a pretty straightforward understanding of how precious time can be when attributed to earnings, one’s personal life though can be a bit tricky to apply that understanding.
A basic example could be a simple missed appointment. Losing track of time caused the individual to miss an appointment, charging them a non-refundable fee. Or, having to spend your time running errands all about town. The more time spend driving your vehicle, the more money spent on gas.
There are tips, tricks, and teachable habits to help you utilize time as much as possible so that it can be treated as the currency it is.
- Time Wasted Cannot Be Returned
- Automate, Coordinate, & Delegate
- Know When to Politely Say “No”
- Understand Basic Time Management Principles
Before delving into a project or task, be certain that you are about to invest your time in it wisely. Take a little bit of time to research if the desired result from the project’s completion will be worth the time invested. The financial term Return on Investment (ROI) can also be applied to time. Will it be worth it?
Do not undertake all the burden of responsibilities when it comes to your business. A perceptive boss knows when to automate, coordinate, and delegate specific roles at any given business. Examples:
Automate – If there is a new machine that can cut the current production time in half, that would be considered a great ROI since you’ll eventually be making more money by investing less time in production.
Coordinate – Taking a minute to get everyone on the same page will increase clarity regarding expectations from your employees.
Delegate – It is imperative that you have a trusted staff below you to delegate tasks to as it is not productive to micromanage every detail. You need to focus on the bigger picture while allowing your staff to operate.
It might feel like 100s of pounds are weighing down on you at times, so it is important to know when to politely say “no” if offered more work. Yes, that can be lucrative, but you only have a certain number of working hours in a day if you wish to maintain a healthy daily routine. Investing your valuable work time in one or two projects at a time allows you to focus on the material being created rather than focusing on racing the clock.
In some scenarios, you could claim you are interested but won’t be able to begin for a week or two. Depending on the due date, they might be able to wait for you.
It is a lot easier said than done to adopt absolute efficiency when it comes to time management, but it is a habit that can be taught through repetition and practice. Here are some tips to follow to help give you an idea of proper time management principles:
- Set reasonable goals
- Prioritize Wisely
- Create a time limit/schedule
- Take 10-minute breaks in between tasks to properly reorient yourself for the next task (right head space = fewer distractions)
- Be organized
- Always plan ahead
You can practice tips one through four all you want and none of it will matter because records of the earnings made from your time management skills aren’t being kept track of. This is a learning curve that applies to a lot of self-employed or freelance workers. How can you see if these new principles you’re applying to your hard work are paying off if you aren’t recording it?
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