Previously we touched briefly on a couple of the thousands of different time management items. Today, let’s take a quick look at some of the common pitfalls of time management techniques that can twist and warp them into time consumption techniques.
One of the most common time management techniques is to list out your tasks. Not only does this break down exactly what needs to be done in order to meet your goal, but it also helps keep track of the tasks involved so that they aren’t forgotten. This is an item that can and should help you in organization and saving time, but has the potential to burn up as much, or even more time than it saves! As with so many things, a balance is necessary. Spending an exorbitant amount of time plotting out every detail and recording each tiny little event will rapidly take you down the path of this activity becoming a burden rather than an asset. You will need to find that level of involvement where your tracking has enough detail to be productive and informative for you and your decisions, but not so exhaustive that it a) uses more time than it saves, or b) becomes a chore and drives you towards procrastination or other time wasters.
Another common time management boon is to consolidate all of your appointments and activities into one planner system. Obviously this puts all needed information into one easy to reference place. You will eliminate double bookings and other schedule duplications, eradicate the need for checking different sources, and abolish that flustered feeling of having to look all over the place just to get your day laid out properly. All great benefits. Then, suddenly the phone accidentally gets dropped into a puddle, or the computer gets a virus, or Jim over there spills his coffee all over your day planner. Did you make a backup copy of your calendar and store it somewhere accessible?
It is an incredibly easy thing to overlook, especially with the reliability of software and computer systems today, but all it takes is one small accident to make that item unavailable to you for an indeterminate amount of time. With Outlook or other digital calendar systems it is very quick and easy to make a backup, so use that capability and get a copy stored somewhere other than your primary access point (a flash drive, online service, etc). With a pen and paper system it is a bit more effort, photocopy perhaps, but have a backup plan in place or should that little accident happen you will be up the proverbial creek without a paddle!
As touched upon previously, remember yourself as well. Be sure to take the time to get the nourishment and rest that you need, both in body and mind. Reading is always a great pursuit to keep your mind active, and here at National Agents Alliance we encourage you to dive into that endeavor frequently. If you need some material, check out the shop and see if there is something that piques your interest.