Developing Time Management Skills
One of the better ways of managing stress levels is through
effective time management. Often, running out of time to perform the
necessary tasks and completing those things that must be completed
causes the body and mind to feel a great deal of pressure. And,
when under pressure, stress develops. As many of you already know
first-hand, when you're stressed, you generally work less well and
less efficiently then when you're not stressed.
We aren't born with innate time management skills. It takes learning
and practice to develop the skills and habits necessary in order
to be organized and able to cope with deadlines and other time
pressures. Fortunately, there are many books available that will
show you the ins and outs of time management and organizational
skills. There are websites that will also provide you with the
information you need to develop good time management practices.
It may sound silly, but the first thing you need to do to develop
better time management skills is to accept that you need them and
to pursue them. One important task you will need to accomplish in
order to become better organized and able to meet deadlines and
accomplish tasks is to write down a list of your strengths and
weaknesses. Then, you need to analyze how your weaknesses interfere
in the efficient and timely completion of tasks. Once you isolate
the whys and the hows, you can then take steps to overcome these
problems and weaknesses. As you continue in your efforts to overcome
the weaknesses, you develop good work habits and better organizational
skills. Once they are in place, you should be able to manage your
time constraints much more effectively, enabling you to meet your
deadlines and to perform your tasks better.
One common problem faced by those of us who have trouble with time
management is in decision-making skills. Those who have problems
with completing their tasks on time often have trouble making
decisions in a timely manner, or making good decisions. Once you
develop good decision-making skills, you will find that you can
prioritize your work better. Doing things in the correct order and
devoting only the time that should be required to the individual
tasks will be a big help in managing your time well.
Obviously, this involves learning how to plan effectively. Again,
there are an untold number of books and webpages devoted to the
art (or science) of planning effectively. Don't expect to get it
right the first time -- as with most things, it takes experience
to come up with efficient plans. You get this experience by doing.
Each time you come up with a plan to carry out the required tasks,
you develop experience. If you learn from your experience, you'll
become a better task planner. By planning your tasks well, working
on your strengths and working around your weaknesses, you'll be
able to manage your time better.
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