Time management is a skill that every entrepreneur needs to master in order to be successful. After all, there are only so many hours in a day. One must learn to make full use of those hours to reach their goals. However, a person risks becoming a workaholic if they’re not careful. Here are some tips for managing your time without sacrificing the other things you love.
Get the small stuff out of the way first
Let’s say you have an important email you need to write. You know it’s not going to take all day, but it’s something that has to get done. This would be a good thing to take care of when you first wake up in the morning.
The smallest items on our to do list have a funny way of staying on our to do list much longer than they need to. So if you know something is only going take a few minutes to complete, do it first. This let’s you get it out of the way so you can focus on bigger things.
Next, focus on the thing you’re most tempted to procrastinate on
Procrastination is an entrepreneur’s kryptonite. It’s the thing that will destroy our dreams faster than anything else. And yet, it’s something we all have to confront.
If there’s a task that you’re particularly dreading, focus on it next. It may not be fun, but you’ll feel a lot better once it’s finished. It’ll also make everything else you do seem easy by comparison.
Separate your day into blocks of time according to tasks
This is something that will change from person to person and business to business. You might dedicate a part of your day to marketing. Another might be dedicated to creating new products or performing daily maintenance.
Each of these blocks of time might last an hour or two, depending on how long it takes to accomplish each task. Dividing your day like this makes it easy for you to see what needs to get done, and it also frees up a lot of extra time. This way, you’re getting things done without feeling overwhelmed.
Reward yourself for completing a task
Working constantly doesn’t necessarily get the job done more effectively. It just drains your batteries faster. Once you complete a task, or finish one of the blocks of time mentioned earlier, allow yourself to take a short break.
Don’t go overboard. Fifteen or twenty minutes should be enough. This will give you a chance to recharge and prepare for the next task. It also frees up some of your time so it doesn’t feel like you’re constantly working all day.
Decide on a stopping point
Once you’ve completed everything on your to do list for the day, it’s time to stop. Although it may be tempting to continue working well into the night, it’s not healthy to do so. Workaholics tend to be unhappy people, and they’re not necessarily more productive than others.
Making the decision to stop at a certain time everyday gives you more time to spend with your family and other things you care about. It also prevents you from completely draining yourself. Some people wake up in the morning and find the thing they once loved now feels like a chore. You don’t want this to happen to you.
Of course, you still want to challenge yourself. If it’s still early in the day, and you feel like you can get more done, then by all means continue. But if you feel you’ve done your work, then take the time to congratulate yourself on a job well done.