Almost all of us wish we were more productive, well the biggest secret to productivity I have found is time management! If we could eliminate procrastination and manage our time efficiently what we accomplish can be amazing. In this article I share the 3 simple time management steps I learned while I was getting my business degree.
Procrastination is the enemy of time management and counterproductive to achieving goals. However, with a little insight, planning, goal setting and action procrastination can be a thing of the past.
Step #1 – Make A List
The first step in time management is making a list of all the things that take up our time. This has become a popular concept by the now famous Getting Things Done system. Be sure to include pleasure activities on your list such as television and Internet here! For your average day, calculate exactly how much time is spent sleeping, exercising, working, attending classes and studying. Since working and sleeping are mandatory and will no doubt consume sixteen hours per day of our time, we are left with 8 hours at the end of each day to accomplish goals. As a student, attending classes, completing projects and studying for exams should be first on the priority list. Now, it is up to you to set goals to achieve everything that will be required of you, the successful student.
Step #2 – Set Goals
Next, you will need to set some goals; goals should be split into three parts. These three parts are:
- short term goals
- medium term goals
- long-term goals
It is also important while you are writing out your goals to identify the action steps required to be able to achieve each of those goals.
As an MBA student, my short term goals were focused around “what needs to be accomplished in order to be successful come mid-term exam time”. Here, you will want to calculate what sort of effort it will take on your part to be prepared for each week and month leading up to these tests.
A good time frame for setting medium term goals is the end of the semester. Here, you will need to figure out and plan for earning a good class grade for the end of the semester. It is never too early to put together a plan for finishing final projects, papers and studying for final exams. The earlier a plan is thought out and implemented, the better!
The long-term goals while I was getting a business degree were focused around improving my potential career opportunities. These long term goals were identifying what career I wanted to have not just when I graduated but also 5 years after graduation. I believed setting myself up while in school would help with finding a job long after I graduated.
Step #3 – Take Action
This is the most important step. You have now identified how you spend your time, what goals are important to you and how to achieve them its time to take action.
There is little that can be said about step 3 it is simply stating that it is time for you to start hustling and achieving your goals.
“Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle.” ~ Abraham Lincoln
“The successful person has the habit of doing the things failures don’t like to do.” ~ Thomas Edison
Time management is simple, however, it is not always easy. But, with proper planning and a willingness to sacrifice some free time, your goals will be achieved!
Photo By: bogenfreund