We can be very careful about our budgets and very circumspect during our shopping raids. Cutting coupons and splitting checks are just natural manners to many; the temptation of a 99-cent app is almost irresistible to many more. Nevertheless, the same people, when it comes to spending time and paying attention, can be so very different, giving these away freely at the slightest provocation – and more often than not end up wondering how swiftly time passes, wishing they had more of it, realizing that they fell victim of time killers. So, what are the biggest time killers nowadays?
Mind thieving distractions
So many of our plans get riddled with various distractions. As it happens, people just come up and demand some of our time, no one thinking that what really transpires is the theft of something that cannot be refunded and is lost forever. With every passing month, we get more money but lose time irrevocably.
Which of these distractions can be avoided, and how to achieve this feat?
As we plan our budget, we should as well plan our time – maybe even more painstakingly. People who don’t control their time are apt to find that someone else does.
In order to gain real control of our time – and the accomplishments of our plans – we ought to realize that distractions rob us. We can stop the robbing only if we can learn to value every minute more than we do now.
Communicating and socializing
There’s no doing away with communication, for it brings us relief, information, and shifts in energy and atmosphere. Still, communication is meant to be positive and not irritating. We don’t have to get involved with people we dislike – although simple courtesy and politeness demand that we should. But how much negativity can a mere conversation bring into our lives?
Day in, day out, negative communicators kill time and mood, and atmosphere. Some of them were once chosen by ourselves and were a mistake initially or outstayed their time.
Overusing the word ‘yes.’
When people you know well ask for something, the natural wish is to answer “yes.” But a “yes” means you will have to postpone your other commitments; are they not so considerable, then? What risks do you run by having them delayed? Say “yes” and add that you will be able to assist only after you have done your stuff, thereby showing responsibility.
Here is your smartphone buzzing away. You feel you are obliged to pick it up. Is someone calling with a question? You reply immediately or even have to find the right information for the reply first. Then you go back to whatever you have been doing and discover that it is not very easy. So, unimportant interruptions have to be ignored.
There is OfficeTime.net’s survey which cites 10 of the most dangerous time killers. The following offenders most often disrupt our performance:
- Incoming emails
- Procrastinating in all its forms
- Surfing the net
- Attending meetings
- Watching television
- Unrelated conversations
- Commuting and going about town
- Social networking
- Phone calls and texts
- Red tape issues
Disarray on the work desk leads to many interruptions; even if they are trifling, they are manifold. Sometimes they can be pretty stressful when you need a document that has mysteriously vanished among scattered papers. Besides, an orderly desk often correlates with an orderly mind. If you mean to grow more efficacious, try to become a little tidier.
Perfectionism and Indecision
It’s really difficult to be both bent for perfection and decisive. As one strives for perfection, they are sure to spend more time than it is necessary. Also, it is hard to arrive at decisions when they can detract from perfection. Better break the task into smaller portions to avoid losing much time.
Since we all have a history of failures and disappointments, as we tackle a new project, negative ideas can prevail and take surprisingly much time. Naturally, they should be shaken off, or abolished, which is easier said than done. It doesn’t happen for the first time, and you should know that yielding to negative thoughts gets you nowhere. The right technique is to concentrate on the task to exclude all useless negativity completely.
No one can do everything equally well; some tasks had better be delegated to a person who is best at them. Undoubtedly you can take it as an opportunity to learn new things, yet if time is of the essence, delegate the project to a worthy performer instead of monkeying around with it.
We all know that we should keep being motivated – but it can fail the best of us at times, and we are left aimless and hesitant about our headway. If you find it challenging to maintain the desired concentration level, think about the time when you are through with your task and will be able to have a break.
Sorting out misinterpretations
It would be much easier if we received (and texted) only clearly stated messages. As it is, some people can get tangled in further explanations asking and providing clarification.
Considerations to be chased away
Procrastination is often triggered by a fear of what other people will say. While we are doing something, we expect either success or failure – but both are natural! Chalk failure up as experience put an extra feather in your hat for success, and do away with thinking about what all the people around you might say. Focusing on the job will enhance your chance of success.
Going for thrills
Some people get fired up by the notion of deadlines – it gives them a thrill. They procrastinate in order to feel the excitement of the nearing deadline. Should it be the case, the idea is to break the task into small portions and establish a deadline for each portion. Then the thrill of laboring against time increases.
Of course, you win a lot of time by eliminating those time killers, but time management offers some other techniques for freeing more time for experts, like:
Set yourself a clear purpose. Before tackling the task, make sure you know exactly what must be done. It will keep you concentrated sharply all along the way.
Set yourself the right goals. Mind they are feasible, tangible, relevant, and have defined deadlines so you can keep track of completion.
Do regular planning and re-planning. Circumstances are liable to change, so a good plan must be altered to fit the current state of affairs.
If you mean to do away with these time killers for good, you will have to lay long-term plans and introduce changes to your frame of mind so they could stick.