Forget time management! You can’t manage time. Time management is a waste of time.
Leaders and teams alike are pressed for time – this scarce resource. I get many requests to teach time management. But the first lesson is that you can’t manage it! Time ticks along at its own pace, really. Although we each have twenty-four hours each day, time speeds up when you’re late. And it slows down when you wish it wouldn’t. Things outside your control insert themselves into the time you have, and you can’t manage them either. That’s why time management is a waste of time.
The first lesson is that you can’t manage it!
So what can you manage? You, my friend. You’re the only thing you can try to manage. Some trainers would tell you to start by setting priorities, but instead of setting them, look at how you already use your time and ask yourself some questions about the priorities you have set. Here are a few things to consider:
- Is this a business (or a personal) priority?
- Is it important to do it right now?
- Does it make sense that I perform this task?
- How much joy does it bring me?
- Does it take advantage of a talent I have?
- Is it an intellectual or artistic challenge (in a good way?)
- Finally, is there a financial reward?
Now you’re in a position to adjust your time to allow for those things that mean the most to your business, and yourself. Those are your priorities, and they should fill up the bulk of your day. Remember to leave yourself a margin because time speeds up, or one of those inevitable things outside your control happens.
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