You've got to know what you want. This is central to acting on your intentions. When you know what you want, you realize that all there is left then is time management. You'll manage your time to achieve your goals because you clearly know what you're trying to achieve in your life.
How you manage your time is either a benefit to your day and your life, or it is a detriment. Effect time management is a critical piece when constructing inner peace.
We all run our lives with time in mind, if there is someone out there who has found a way to avoid the clock, and is efficiently managing life in modern day society, I want to hear from them. I want to learn the tricks to not having to be a slave to the clock. But until that person makes their secrets known to the rest of us, if they even exist, we all need to look at our lives, no matter what we do, as though we are managing a huge corporation with millions of moving parts - because you are.
We all have outside commitments, we have to meet with people, prepare meals, make sure the kids get to school on time, make sure they are at their activities with supplies in hand on time, plus millions of other time related things that each family does on a daily basis. Sometimes it can feel like the clock is running us, instead of us managing our time and thus our lives effectively.
Time management is extremely important to your overall happiness, health and peace-of-mind, no matter what you do to earn a living. Those who don’t use good time management skills are often late to engagements they are stressed out about things, and create stress for others. They are usually the type of person who does not see the correlation between their poor time management skills and their poor life management skills. Usually, they don't think they have any control or choice in the situation.
On the other hand, those who are too time restrictive are also not happy, nor do they have peace-of-mind. They are constantly looking at the clock, stressing about the speed of the moving second hand and how much has to be accomplished in the coming minutes.
There are better ways to manage time in order to produce peacefulness, joy and hopefully more time to enjoy the fun things in life. When I read this article I thought that even though it is written for business people, it has many wonderful suggestions on time management for everyone.
By implementing time effective management tools used by successful business owners everyone can bring success into their life, no matter what they do and who they serve as their customer. Everyone has a customer that they serve, a homemaker has customers, yep, the homemaker’s customers are her family, organizations she belongs to, her community, anyone or anything that receives benefit from her contributions. Every person has someone or something that receives benefit from what they produce, thus it can be viewed as their customer.
As you read the article below please visualize yourself as the team-leader of an effectively run organization that is organized and successful. While that may be a far stretch from your true reality today, it is possible with intention and dedication to change the way things are done.
Making the decision to recreate your organization and time management where once there was none is a big job, but it is very doable and one that you and your entire organization will greatly benefit from. This one step will be the best self-care decision you make all year, its effect will be felt by every person in your organization (family). Eliminating the things that bring in the stress and negativity is so much easier than having to deal with the effects that develop every day. Don't allow yourself to get overwhelmed and turn your back on your new time management project. Fight the temptation to go back to your old ways and implement your new time management plan.
For all you super driven people who believe that you are doing the best for your customer/ family when you give and give until you are empty, always putting everyone else before yourself, you will note that this article says that doesn't work. And it doesn't. You need to take care of the needs of the care-taker in order to make it so that the care-taker (you) has the energy, peace-of-mind and attitude to serve your customer with the love and appreciation that lets them know that you really care.
When you wear yourself out you are giving out energy and attitude that says this is a burden, which translates to "you are a burden to me." And I doubt that is the message you intend to send to any customer no matter who they are.
By putting YOU and your personal needs first, sleep, self-care, relaxation and rejuvenation, fun with family, the things that make you happy, you will have much more energy to give to your customer and community. Many people have backward priorities, they put them-self on the bottom of their list and everything else gets their attention first. They believe that they are doing what is best for everyone. But they are miserable, and those who are receiving what they are producing are feeling their misery. Don't serve your customer your misery only because you are not taking the time to nurture yourself. You'll find ideas on how to implement self-care in other blog posts here on My Loving Self.com
I hope you enjoy this article written by Michael Cooper, it appeared on Entrepreneur.com in July 2015
To read the article on Entrepreneur.com click here
-Wendy Mae, Ph.D.
8 TIME BUCKETS THAT ENTREPRENEURS CAN USE TO
MAINTAIN A HEALTHY BUSINESS AND LIFESTYLE
by Michael Cooper
Entrepreneurs are blessed with a boundless creative force. Inspiration and ingenuity are always in abundance. However, business owners tend to struggle with time management. If this sounds like you, help has arrived.
While innate creative talent cannot be taught, time management can. With a bit of organization and mindfulness, entrepreneurs can maintain a healthy business and lifestyle.
Time buckets are the particular timeframes that you spend doing your everyday tasks: meetings, exercise, family time, etc. These may vary slightly depending on your business and the events currently unfolding in your life. Organizing your activities around time buckets can ensure you’re allocating enough time to all your responsibilities.
Here’s a list of the time buckets I use with my clients, in priority order:
1. SLEEP AND RECUPERATION TIME
The mother of all time buckets, sleep and recuperation are required to be healthy, alert and functional in all the other aspects of life. This bucket is of the highest priority because without meeting its needs, effective productivity in all other areas is not possible.
Scientists recommend seven to eight hours of sleep each night for a healthy lifestyle. And let’s not forget about naps. Studies show that naps reduce fatigue and increase alertness, so if you can swing it, include them in this time bucket.
It’s easy to notice how wrecked our kids are when they don’t sleep enough, right? Well, what about you? Are you allocating enough hours per day or week to sleep and recuperation?
2. SELF-CARE AND REGENERATION TIME
This one tends to be the loneliest of all the time buckets. Whether this time is used to meditate, sit in a hot tub, swim, go for a hike, listen to music or just “be,” this bucket is sadly overlooked often. These activities are necessary for maintaining a feeling of well-being, motivation, focus and inner-peace.
How much time do you typically spend on self-care and regeneration each week?
3. VACATION TIME
It may seem counter-intuitive, but after sleep and self-care, vacation is the next most important time bucket for a business owner. Vacation is a wonderful agent of organization. When you block out time for vacation, it becomes necessary for you to structure your business more efficiently, so it can run well when you aren’t there.
There’s more. There’s no better way to get away from your business than to actually get away from your business. The distance provides a shift in perspective that often generates breakthrough business ideas and strategic insights that we can’t see when we’re slogging through day-to-day operations.
I recommend four to six weeks of vacation per year for any business owner. I take eight weeks of vacation every year. How much vacation time do you take? If your answer is none or very little, then get your calendar out right now and schedule at least one week away from the office. Make sure it happens within the next three months and make sure you honor your commitment to your own well-being.
The top three priorities are centered around you. You should be your number-one priority, because you’re not nearly as valuable to your team or your family if you’re feeling stressed, worried or exhausted.
4. FAMILY, FRIENDS AND SOCIAL TIME
Here’s another time bucket that often gets short shrift. If you’re like most of my clients, you’re probably surprised that I’d suggest prioritizing family, friends and social time over work. The truth is, most business owners struggle to fit this time bucket in whenever there happens to be an opening. This is a big problem that plagues many of us.
Often, I’ll get hired to help a client who’s so out of balance that his partner, friends and kids are complaining because they’re feeling neglected. It’s important to check in with yourself about your goals and remind yourself why it is you’re working so hard to begin with.
Hopefully, it’s because you want to enjoy a gratifying life that includes spending time with the people you love. If not, then I would coach you to reassess your priorities. We are nothing without the people we love. How much time do you regularly set aside for your family, friends and social life?
5. STRATEGY TIME
Strategy time is essential for any business that will eventually grow and adapt to changing market conditions. Working from a sound strategy is paramount, but believe it or not, this time bucket is often overlooked by business owners. Most business owners get so entrenched in the day-to-day work, they forget to pull back and glean the wisdom of a broader perspective.
Assessing your business comprehensively and regularly is the best way to make sure you’re not wasting time or money, inadvertently drifting off target. Most people don’t realize that once you’re in the habit of strategizing, it doesn’t take all that much time.
I recommend setting up a structure for strategizing and then dedicating one to two hours per week (many of my clients use our weekly one-hour coaching session as their strategy time) for using this time effectively. A simple strategy would be to consider what’s working, what’s not working, what you need to do about it and what the business really needs.
If you allocate just a bit of time for strategizing each week, your business will enjoy years of healthy, managed growth. How much time do you set aside for strategizing?
6. BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT TIME
Do you remember the old farmer with the leaky roof? When asked why he doesn’t fix it, he’d say “When it’s raining I can’t, and when it’s not, the roof don’t leak.”
This is the cycle that many business owners get into when it comes to landing new business. Instead of making time for steady business development, we turn our attention to new business potential only after our current client slate dries up. This results in gaps in cash flow and a feeling of scarcity that can significantly increase our stress levels.
It’s important to schedule time each day or week to contact potential clients and develop marketing strategies that will bring you new business. This time bucket is a bigger priority than your actual client work, because it’s what keeps the engine greased and humming. Business development focuses on the future health and longevity of your business.
For most business owners, I recommend two to five hours per week on this time bucket. How much time do you spend on business development?
7. BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION TIME
Boring details — that’s how entrepreneurs tend to think of this time bucket. We’re big picture people, with little time or patience for the nuts and bolts of business administration. Most often, we only take notice when something goes wrong: maybe billing is behind or there’s a crisis in human resources.
When you give this time bucket its due, you’re buying peace of mind. Avoiding business admin responsibilities will almost always result in a crisis that will take up a ton of your time, and no one wants that. Avoid messy situations by allocating enough time each week to administer your business properly.
Most solopreneurs need one to two hours per week to keep the ship aright. For small businesses of two to 10 people, three to six hours should do the trick. How much time do you schedule each week to focus on business administration?
8. CLIENT SERVICE TIME
This time bucket will consume the lion’s share of your time. It’s the meat of your business, but it’s important to not let it overshadow the rest of your time buckets. Most often, we allot too much time to client service time, which can throw our business strategy out of whack.
For example, it you’re spending too much time serving clients, you lack time for business development, which means you either need to bring those two time buckets into better balance or perhaps increase your fees to ensure the sustainability of your business. However, it’s important to allocate enough time to keep your clients happy, because without them your business will fail.
Be sure to give this time bucket adequate focus to honor all of your commitments to clients. For most entrepreneurs, this bucket will take up 25 to 35 hours per week. If you spend closer to 50 to 60 hours per week on this bucket, that is unsustainable for the longer term, and while it may be helping you get a lot done right now, it’s actually a threat to personal health and business survival. How much time do you spend on client service?
Organizing your time is empowering and illuminating. Allocating and honoring time buckets ensures that your approach to work and life is balanced and mindful. Taking care of yourself is an essential aspect of being an adult, if happiness and success are your goals.
Neglecting certain time buckets most often results in dysfunction and stress that could potentially threaten your business. Take the time to organize your time buckets carefully, and try to honor each of them. If you fail, that’s OK. Reassess your time buckets to make sure they’re set up properly, and recommit yourself to them and to leading a happy and full life.
link to the complete article at Entrepreneur.com
about the author:
MICHAEL COOPER Founder of Innovators + Influencers
Michael O. Cooper equips right-brain entrepreneurs, creative professionals and agencies with the business mindset, strategies and skills to thrive in a constantly changing environment. He is the founder of InnovatorsandInfluencers.com and serves as executive coach, facilitator and trainer for design, software, public relations and communications firms, as well as TED Fellows.
The author of all blog posts on this page is Wendy Mae, Ph.D.
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