Write: Serdar Turan
Time management can save your life in many areas from your daily life to your work and school.
The only resource that is the same for all people—from the youngest to the oldest, from the richest to the poorest, and from the hardest working to the laziest—is time. We all have twenty-four hours in a day. What is important and what makes the difference is how we use this. Here is some advice on how to manage time effectively.
• KNOW YOURSELF
Planning begins first with knowing yourself. Take a piece of paper and honestly write down what you are good at and where you are inadequate in matters taking place over time. Then think in detail about what you can do to preserve your good sides and improve your weak sides.
• SET PRIORITIES
Most of the time, you will feel you are lost when striving to do more than one task at once. To overcome this, set priorities clearly. Prioritize the works you have to do by making a list. See what is urgent and what is important. Sometimes, even if you finish all of the urgent tasks, you might not be able to finish your day productively because you let the important ones slip.
• DETERMINE POINTS OF INEFFICIENCY
Many routines you carry out throughout the day steal from your work time. When you add these up, you face the reality that you are losing a significant amount of time. Besides activities such as reading e-mail, spending time on social media, and web browsing, it is possible to fall into time traps in many areas such as leaving assignments for the last minute and postponing household chores. Review your routines and calculate how productive you are. Setting up a spam filter can sometimes save you the effort of reviewing dozens of e-mails.
• DELEGATE TASKS TO OTHERS
Most of the time, you might not have to do every task you take on yourself. If you have the means to transfer tasks to others, don’t hesitate. Also determining their abilities and responsibility, transfer part of your work to your colleagues, family members, or those who want to help you. When doing this, state clearly the expected result and by when the work must be finished. Follow the process carefully and intervene when necessary.
• LEARN TO SAY “NO”
Sometimes we accept tasks so as not to hurt someone’s feelings or be rude. Other times, we volunteer for work that is not our duty. Acting rationally and being able to say “no” is important here. Explain the reasons behind your reply clearly and honestly to the person to whom you say “no.” He or she will surely understand.
• WAITING AND HESITATING: TWO TRAPS
If other people are to participate in the task or mission you must realize, or if input is required from someone else, set a highly defined limit for waiting. Do not accept such answers that do not comply at all with planning as, “I called; they will reply to me,” or “They will send it as soon as possible,” and be persistent in your communication until you achieve a clear result.
• USE TOOLS
Lots of software and applications for time management, from the simplest to most complex, await your use today. These applications, which you can download from the Internet and even load on your mobile devices, can provide you many tools from reminding you of your tasks to information sharing, and from active messaging to comprehensive reports, and will contribute to your time management process.
Don’t forget that managing time effectively will not only gain you productivity; it will also allow you to focus more on many areas from your health to improving your social life. Now, do you have the time to manage your time?