Time Management- I will do this!

Posted by Jennifer Campoli on January 6th, 2011
Filed under Fun topic, Goals | 5 Comments »

Morning friends! :)

Missed ya yesterday. I had an unplugged day. Signed off from the tech world for a bit and just focused on well…everything I haven't been focusing on.

I looked at this guy all day

Yes, my Christmas tree is still up and I'm loving every minute of it! (it will come down Sunday)

I have completely immersed myself in my material for the health and nutrition coaching program at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, which begins MONDAY! I might just be a bit excited about this. A wee bit. Before the program begins we were give a collection of 14 classes called Fundamentals to work through. Such cool material guys.

I was doing a lot of this all day…

One of the classes I listened to yesterday was on time management.

I cringe.

I cringe again.

Let me share something with you- I love, love, love being organized. I thrive in organization. I can DO organization.

But I don't do it.

Consistency has not been my strength of recent years and that translates into a very poor, poor time management. So sad but true. And the worst part is that I know time management is a HUGE key to achieving goals, creating the life we want, completing projects, and finding success.

Bummer that I don't do it. :) But after the call yesterday I have newfound inspiration and one serious desire to overhaul my management skills. Because you see, time management ain't all that hard. It just takes practice and repetition. :)

Allow me to share with ya what I'm doing as of TODAY. I have coffee brewing so come on over, sit down and let's chat.

Have I ever told you that I have the coolest coffee maker in the world? Oh it's so fabulous…hands down the best wedding gift ever!

10 Steps to becoming a pro at Time Management

1. To begin, write out all the things you do throughout a day. Get picky- everything from the shower, eating breakfast, checking email, reading your fav blogs like LiveWellFitNow :), roaming the office hallways when you don't want to work. If you do it, put it on there. Then take a deep breath and look at the madness in front of you. Identify three things:

  • where are your time wasters
  • where are you putting most of your energy
  • are your priorities included in your day

This was NOT fun for me. I waste a lot of time.

The last of this step is to decide what you can remove, where you can create more space and what needs to go. Get all of those wasters out of there guys! What can you say NO to? Create SPACE for the good stuff. I promise if feels good to do this.

2. Take a few minutes and write out your priorities. What matters to you in life right now? What life "categories" are you wanting to include in your day? What goals are on the top list and deserve highest importance? Get on paper what matters, what it looks like and what you want.

I realized that the most important priorities in my day aren't truly present. Sure they are here and there and during spotty occasions but not with consistency. How can I say that I want to grow my coaching practice when the actions required to do that aren't there? How can I say that I will complete a century ride when I haven't considered a training plan or fitness routine that will get my body ready? I claim that a life of vitality and wellness comes from self care yet I don't really make that much time for it. Not good!

3. Create a set of categories for your calendar that encompass your priorities and your goals. These can be any set of general categories. For example: fitness, cooking/food, work projects, administrative work (email, following up), home (laundry, shopping, dry cleaning), marketing. These categories will go into your calendar for defined chunks of time. Here is my current list of categories, still a work in progress:

** notice the last category (more on that in a bit)

4. Within your categories, create a set of "projects" or specific goals to work toward. For example, I want to complete a century ride. I want to expand my local networking in the Boston area, I want to create a newsletter. These projects serve as an end point or set of end points for specific goals.

5. For each project, make a list of every action or task required to complete that project. Don't worry about the order! Just write out everything you will need to do from the mundane to the big.

The very beginnings of my project + action step list:

6. Order the action steps or tasks in the way you feel will be most appropriate. This is a flexible order! You can shift things around as you see fit. This is only a starting place.

7. Create a calendar- written or electronic. I am of two minds with the calendar. I like my pen and paper. There is something very validating about writing out my calendar and keeping track of my tasks. But I also need to keep track of what I am doing when. So I keep my calendar through iCal and I write my daily todo lists on paper.

8. Schedule time in your calendar for each category as you see fit. Don't freak out on me yet: you do NOT have to make time for every category every day. This is your life and your time- you control what you do with it friends. If you work full time then you will have categories within work each and everyday. Maybe you workout 3 days a week so Fitness or Workouts will be in your calendar 3x. Be thoughtful about this step.

9. Each day you will create a todo list. This is where those projects + action steps come in. With all of those goals and projects you now have an awesome and very comprehensive set of actions/tasks to pull from each day. Depending on the day, look at a particular project. What steps would you like to commit to today? Add them on your todo list!

As I mentioned, I'm an old fashioned pen and paper gal with my todo list. Everyday I have one of these created:

My biggest tip here: set REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS. This is where I always get destroyed. I try to do too much in day or in a given time. There is no better way to set yourself up for procrastination than with overwhelm. So start with a small number of steps.

10. Believe that you can do this! Trust yourself. Believe that you have the ability to do anything in this world!

A few extra tips:

  • Create time in your calendar for JUST YOU. Me time is what I call it. This is where your self care comes in. Time for you to just do for you. What do you love? What makes you happy? What brings you joy? List those things and make time for them. If you don't make the time, it won't happen.
  • Instead of focusing on just the big picture, look at the small pieces and the journey ahead. I spend many hours thinking about everything I want to do. I think about these big goals, these big projects, everything I want and don't have and send myself into a tail spin of overwhelm. I forget that small steps lead to success. Small steps is how we all have to begin!
  • Be fluid. Be willing to shift around your schedule, try something new, re-prioritize, throw away a goal if it doesn't work for you. This is your life. You create what you want!

Now go out there and make some beautiful calendars!

Question of the day: How do you manage your time? Any tips you would like to share with us about what works for you?

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5 Responses to “Time Management- I will do this!”

  1. Deana says:

    Hi darlin',
    This is FABULOUS! You did an excellent job at clearly illustrating this process. I cannot tell you how fantastic this is. I have always felt that I am very good at time management; however, this has shown me some ways to be better and to have a better plan. Thanks.

  2. Jenn,

    These are wonderful tips and your practical real world examples give life to them. Time management is a common theme in my work with clients. Often it boils down to task management, putting your priorities front and center, and saying no to somethings so you can say yes to what it most important now. Keeping a time for your self is a key that many folks forget to hold as solidly as say a work meeting or doctors appointment-I am so glad you pointed that out too. One of the benefits of my dyslexia is learning being very organized and focused, manage the tasks at hand with the time available early on in life – not easy to master but well worth the effort the dividens have paid off for 25+ years now! Thanks again for sharing your tips and experience.

    All my best,

  3. Deana- thank you so much! This was a lot of collected material over the years that I simply haven't been doing. The call from IIN really hit home with me about how to change what I am doing.

    Deirdre- why thank you for commenting over here! I love having you. :) Isn't it amazing how much time management impacts our lives and those that we work with? Putting priorities front and center is so key and making sure YOU are in that list of priorities.

  4. Anna says:

    I find I am better at managing my time when I have a busy schedule and lots of meetings, classes, etc filling up my time. I am always making lists on sticky notes of what I need to accomplish on a given day even if it involves taking out the trash…which reminds me, I still need to do 😉

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