A time management hack to beat the pandemic blues
The Time / Work paradigm is broken. The pandemic has turned time management into a whole new ball game. Without insight and courage, time is an enemy.
Time flies, and you?
Many of the time management techniques that have been used for decades will not work in this setting. We need a way to prioritize and sort, not categorize and identify every task.
Instead of worrying about every item on your to-do lists, I encourage you to ask yourself this simple question, “What activities do I need to do today to make this day a success?” “
These items are very different from your to-do lists. A standard to-do list is a comprehensive list of all the activities that we need to accomplish. It is impossible to complete 30 to 50 tasks in a working day. The more you add to your to-do list, the more overwhelmed and exhausted you’ll feel.
One of the questions asks respondents to choose between the following options:
- Before checking my voicemail or emails, I create a plan for the day.
- My first tasks in the morning are to check my email and voicemail.
Time and opportunity are not the same.
66% of people check their emails daily, but only 34% plan their day. It is common to reach your phone at night and check messages. People are more productive if they don’t check their messages but instead plan their day and have a cup of coffee.
This research shows that checking your email in the morning increases your chances of wasting more than half of your working time.
This simple technique is so effective because it requires you to create a plan for your day. As a result, you take charge of your priorities and exercise proactive control over your day.
An internal locus is the ability to take action, be productive, influence your life, and accept responsibility for your choices. A person with an internal locus of control is more likely to feel in control of their own future. Additionally, research has shown that a place of internal control is associated with better academic performance, better health outcomes, and greater job satisfaction.
According to the Leadership IQ study, we found that 17% of people have an extremely high internal locus, while 29% have a low or moderately high external locus. This is important because people who have a high level of internal control are 136% happier in their careers.
Stay in control.
You can take control of your day by setting a plan and not responding to emails. This will greatly increase your sense of well-being.
This technique will also require you to be more proactive in your mental state. Instead of waiting for others to set your priorities, this technique allows you to go in front of them and decide where to spend your time.
The most successful stand out for their proactivity. The study “Employee engagement is less dependent on managers than you might think” found that proactivity was a critical determinant of employee engagement and motivation at work. If you passively wait for direction, it is almost inevitable that you will feel more overwhelmed and exhausted.
This technique is simple, but it will help you build a healthy and powerful mindset throughout the day. It is also one of the most effective ways to get rid of the feeling of overwhelm and exhaustion.
Thoughts on the pandemic
It seems the new post-pandemic world continues to grow challenges like weeds.
The days we spend in idle and frivolous occupations, even at work, are no longer tenable. Playing solitaire on your computer is now a crime equal to embezzlement. Gossiping with the inhabitants of neighboring cabins is a crime punishable by exile. In other words, you can’t get away with procrastinating even if you are the boss without serious ramifications, especially if you are the boss.
You should strive to set a good example of meeting planning and cunning. Because your colleagues, teammates and employees look to you for advice and example.
Since our hours, even our minutes, have become so much more precious and fragile, that does not mean that they should be amassed.
Instead, we should be like Shakespeare’s Falstaff. He was profligate but cunning. Like Shakespeare’s Falstaff, we are to be lavish but cunning in all things.
Falstaff had learned the wonderful trick of spending other people’s money – spending their money, their time, their reputation and even their blood. All in pursuit of his own greedy agenda. And Shakespeare’s “Flalstaff” made it all work – until he was hanged.
Are you addicted to the way you spend the day, the week, the hour or the minute? Instead, continue to give freely to others without thinking about your own personal desires, and you will find that your schedule will not only survive, but give you more freedom and leisure.
Image Credit: Kampus Production; Pexels; Thank you!
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