“I don’t have time for that right now.”
“If only I can, but I don’t have the time.”
“I’m too busy with work that I can’t work out or read a book.”
Perhaps, lack of time is the most common excuse when people fail to do something. But my question is… do they really lack time or do they lack will?
We all have 168 hours per week, but how can some people spend at least 5 hours per week to work out? If there’s one thing I learned from time management is that it’s not about finding time but about making time. So I believe they lack will because they believe they lack time. Does it make sense?
To sum it up, poor time management results in lack of will.
Time Management 101
As a freelancer, I can work anytime I want to, but it doesn’t mean that I’m in control of my time. Let’s admit it, it’s not easy to manage one’s time. It takes the utmost discipline to follow a strict schedule.
Here’s the situation, I want to work 8 hours a day, spend an hour to work out, an hour to read, and a few hours to hustle. Over the past two years that I’ve been freelancing, I’ve done nothing but to experiment on effectively managing my time. And it’s only this September that I had devised a plan where I can follow my schedule down to the letter. The secret is to prioritize.To effectively manage your time, know your priorities.
Be More Productive With These Tips
Time Management Tip 1: Focus on importance and not urgency.
“First things first” this is the third habit in Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. That’s what I do and what you should do. Know what is important for you.
The most important thing for me is to train my mind and body. When I wake up in the morning, I grab my Kindle device and read for 30 minutes. After that, I’ll change into my activewear and start my training. If I wake up late, I’ll skip my morning read and start working out. I can always read later in the day. But working out is the one thing that I must finish at once. Finishing it in the morning makes me feel like I’ve finished half of my to-do list.
Time Management Tip 2: Keep your tasks aligned with your main goal.
Each of us has his/her own goals. Some people work long hours because they like what they do or they need the money.As for me, I can earn more if I work longer hours, but I choose not to.
I choose to maintain work-life balance. I work 8 hours a day and spend the rest of my waking time to doing something that contributes to my personal growth. It can be reading, working out, or writing.
Time Management Tip 3: Schedule everything on your calendar.
I was idealistic when I started freelancing. I thought there wasn’t much difference from working in the office and working at home. I can wake up at 5 AM, workout, prepare for work, and commute. If there’s anything freelancing would do, it’s that it’ll give me my 2-hour commute back, which I can use to hustle.
However, my sister who has been freelancing for eight years told me it’s not that simple, and planning that way almost leads to failure. How hard can it be? I decided to freelance to have more control of my time, so it wouldn’t be that hard.
I. WAS. WRONG.
It was hard indeed! The more time I had in my hands, the more I became lax, and the more I squandered it. But after, 1.5 years, I’ve finally fixed my schedule. It took awhile, but I’m glad I fixed it.
4. Use the right tools.
I use my smartphone, Alexa Echo device, and a small stenograph pad to be able to stick to my schedule. I’ll be writing a different post on how I use these tools to be more productive.
Each of us have different priorities in life, and focusing on them is the key to increasing productivity and managing time effectively.
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