Peter Drucker, known as ‘the founder of modern management’, was a renowned consultant, educator, and author, whose books and ideas make up the cornerstone of any business corporation today. His books are considered mandatory reading in every premier B-school as well as for every individual or company keen on imbibing productive behavior. In his famous book ‘The Effective Executive’, Drucker lays out three steps that will help you efficiently manage your time:
1) Analyze your time
The first step to better time management is to understand how much time you actually waste. For at least one week, record all the ways you spend your time. You can either do this yourself by keeping a diary or making an excel sheet, or ask your friend/family member if you feel that it would be tough to be honest to yourself. Let’s admit it- we tend to be lenient on ourselves and might end up ‘cheating’!
2) Reduce unproductive demands
Once the first step is done, you will be shocked to know how many distractions and time-wasting activities you indulge in. In fact, there is a lot of time you can save by cutting down on excess hours. For example:
- Do you really to need to spend an extra hour in the café with your friends?
- Is it necessary to engage in long gossips over the phone or Whatsapp chats?
- Is it possible for you to restrict your YouTube/movies/TV watching/gaming hours?
- Is it necessary for you to spend endless hours browsing Facebook, Instagram, or Snapchat? By the way, according to research, excess of social media usage can lower your self-esteem and make you more depressed. Eventually, you will only be caring for likes and comments on your posts all day and every day.
3) Target completion of tasks in large chunks of time
Done with the first two steps? Now aim to complete your tasks in large blocks of time. Do not set unrealistic targets e.g. aiming to complete a difficult task in a span of one hour when you are aware that telephone interruptions et al will not make it possible to do so. If you really want to focus on completing within an hour then make sure you zone out from all distractions and have uninterrupted continuity.
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