Health & Medical Self-Improvement

Make Your Calendar Your New Best Friend

If you want to increase your performance and productivity, you'll have to learn to use your calendar as a time management tool.
You have more control over your time than you give yourself credit for.
One of the easiest ways to control your time is by controlling your calendar.
We're all given the same amount of time each day.
You have twenty-four hours - which translates to 1,440 minutes - to work with each day.
You have the same amount of time as did Michelangelo, Mother Teresa and Einstein.
You have the same number of hours and minutes each day as does Bill Gates or the President of the United States.
Your productivity won't be predicated on how much time you have, but rather on how you use that time to complete your most important tasks.
Here's how you can leverage your productivity by leveraging the use of your daily calendar.
Plan Your Work You start to control your time by planning your day.
Take 10-15 minutes every morning to plan your work.
Each day is unique.
Schedules change and so do our priorities.
Taking time every morning to review your schedule - and schedule priorities - is how you'll start to control your calendar.
Create a Master List - Then Prioritize We all have important tasks or projects to complete, but not every task or project carries the same priority.
Create a "master list" of all of your important tasks and projects.
Once the master list is created, prioritize it.
By the way, create your master list in pencil.
Why? Because things change - including priorities.
You'll need to adjust your list and your calendar regularly to address those priority changes.
Use Most Productive Hours - For Your Most Important Tasks Not only is each day unique but each of us is a unique individual.
We're cyclical creatures.
Our energy levels peak and wane at different times.
Psychologists refer to these emotional peaks and valleys in terms of biorhythms.
Increasing your performance and productivity means knowing how to use your biorhythms to your advantage.
If you're a "morning person," you'll want to schedule important tasks when your energy and attention span is highest.
If your energy levels are higher in the afternoon or evening, schedule accordingly.
Incorporate 80/20 Into Your Daily Plan Using the 80/20 rule makes a lot of sense when it comes to time management.
Studies show that 80 percent of your productivity will come from 20 percent of your activity.
Twenty percent of an eight-hour day is 96 minutes.
Look over your calendar and see if you can calendar 90 minutes to work on your most important project.
It doesn't have to be 90 continuous minutes.
Schedule three 30-minute segments or two 45-minute blocks of time to deal with your priority project (s).
Just Say "No" As you plan your day and work your plan, you'll immediately face challenges.
The greatest challenge you'll likely face is your coworkers, and perhaps your boss, wanting to make their priorities your priorities.
Don't let that happen.
With coworkers, it's a little easier to simply say, "I'm sorry but I don't have time to handle that in the way it deserves.
But thanks for thinking of me.
" If it's your boss, just mention that important project he/she wanted completed and ask if this new one has priority.
Start Now! Hesitancy, fear and self-doubt all fade with action.
Once you have your priority list in order, commit to taking action on the top three.
You'll validate that commitment by scheduling time on your calendar to start working on one of your most pressing tasks.
Break the task or project into small actions and take those actions at the appropriate time.
Making your calendar your new best friend will do wonders for increasing your performance and productivity.
Your performance rating for any given day won't be based on the number of tasks you completed, but rather on the priority of those tasks and the value they brought to the organization.

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