Today is the day where people play pranks on each other. It may be fun, but if your co-workers mess around with your processes and slow you down, that is just downright irritating. There are already many time management challenges in your day. Monday’s are often the worst. Your desk is piled high, you spill your coffee all over your keyboard, it goes on and on.
You may not be able to control time or turn down work when you are overwhelmed, but there are all kinds of things you can do to manage your time more effectively. Here are some tips and tricks to get the most out of your day:
1. Prioritize. It seems simple enough, but people don’t do it. What is most important? Should you work on the low hanging fruit first? Let your work style be your guide. If you are the kind of person who needs to finish the difficult projects and get them out of the way, do that first.
2. Multitasking is overrated. Trying to do too many things at once leads to mistakes. Focus on each task separately. Sometimes that is impossible, and we have to multitask, but try to control the amount of distractions coming in at once. Let your phone go to voice mail and check messages at certain intervals.
3. Plan your day at the beginning of your day. Schedule everything that can be scheduled and make “to-do” lists. Excel is a fantastic time management tool. By using a PDF to Excel converter you can move all of your schedules and lists into one spreadsheet.
4. Using innovative software such as the one we just mentioned frees up a great deal of your time. Instead of manually inputting data, use a PDF to Excel converter to do the work for you.
5. Manage the way you communicate. Stay away from social media. Twitter and Facebook take up a lot of time. You can see what all your friends and colleagues are up to in your down time. If you are collaborating with colleagues, put together a content calendar to keep track of projects, such as email marketing campaigns. This cuts down on redundant processes and allows all team members to work in harmony, because each person has their tasks outlined.
6. Stay healthy. Poor time management equals poor health. You need to make time for you. Get enough sleep, exercise, eat healthy and don’t forget to take some time to relax.
7. Try mind mapping. This is a powerful tool that helps you to focus and think creatively. There is mind mapping software that helps you to diagram your thoughts in a “map” configuration where ideas branch out from your main theme.
8. Try time management systems such as the Pomodoro Technique. This is a method developed by Francesco Cirillo in the 1980s. The technique uses a timer to manage periods of work. You work in 25-minute intervals. In between, you take short breaks to clear your mind and improve your ability to concentrate.
9. Don’t procrastinate. Putting off work just gets you closer to a deadline and you are apt to make more mistakes.
10. Learn how to say no. You can’t be all things to all people. Of course, you can’t always say no to your boss, but you can turn down that request to do your neighbors taxes for free because they know you are an accountant.