10 time management tips to boost your productivity and achieve your professional goals
We all have goals or intentions for our work, especially at the beginning of a new year.
However, it is easy to get caught up in our day-to-day tasks or feel unclear about how to best manage our time and achieve our goals.
This can make us feel stuck, overwhelmed or that we’re not in control of our time and workload, which can lead to feelings of stress or anxiety about work-life balance.
Here are my 10 top time management tips to help you boost your productivity and achieve your professional goals:
1. Break tasks down into smaller, manageable subtasks
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by a heavy workload or a multitude of tasks.
Break down projects or tasks into smaller, manageable subtasks.
Give each subtask a deadline date to help maintain focus and motivation.
2. Identify your Power Hours
Your ‘Power Hours’ are when your attention, focus, and energy are at their highest.
Use these peak times of productivity for your most important tasks.
Use your less productive times to tackle easy or quick-to-complete tasks.
3. Use a digital to-do list
Keeping all your projects, tasks, and to-dos in one space acts as your ‘second brain’.
A task management app such as Todoist is a great tool to help you capture, organise, and keep track of all your projects and tasks.
It syncs across your devices and integrates with other tools, helping you stay organised at any time, any place, anywhere.
4. Use a weekly planner
Identifying all your meetings, appointments and deadlines provides an overview of your week and gives you visibility of the time you have available.
Remember to schedule breaks and lunch times as well as any personal commitments.
5. Prioritise your tasks
Effective time management isn’t just about getting everything on your to-do list done. It’s about prioritising the things that are important to you and focusing on them first.
A simple way to prioritise your tasks is by using the Eisenhower Matrix.
This method helps you evaluate each of your tasks and categorise them as urgent/not urgent and important/not important.
6. Work in time blocks
Time blocking is a technique in which you allocate specific time blocks for different tasks such as content creation, email, and accounts.
This helps you to be intentional about what you are going to do, when you are going to do it, and for how long.
You can colour-code these on your calendar or weekly planner.
7. Practise solotasking
Solotasking, also known as monotasking, involves tackling one task at a time, rather than flitting between tasks or trying to do more than one task at a time (multitasking).
This will help you to ‘stay in the zone’ and maximise your attention and focus.
8. Reduce distractions
We are living in an increasingly distracting world, with an abundance of things competing for our attention, time, and energy.
Try turning off alerts and notifications, putting your phone out of sight, or using noise-cancelling headphones.
There are several tools that can help you reduce distractions and increase your focus and attention.
Schedule time for your distractions or use your distractions as rewards.
9. Take regular breaks
Breaks help to:
- Restore focus and motivation
- Consolidate memory and learning
- Boost creativity and productivity
- Reduce stress and fatigue
Schedule a mixture of micro, moving, nature, and social breaks into your day.
Don’t make the mistake of eating lunch at your desk or that checking your emails is a break.
Try and get outside during your breaks – to give yourself some physical and mental distance from work and to help you re-energise and refocus.
10. Schedule a weekly review of your goals
A weekly review is an opportunity to review your progress, plan, and prioritise your next steps.
- What have I achieved?
- What do I need to change or do next?
- What am I grateful for?
This is also an opportunity to check in with your well-being and review your sleep, diet, exercise, stress, hobbies, rest, and relaxation.
Time management is a critical skill and fundamental to both our productivity and well-being.
Effective time management will help you plan and prioritise better, feel more in control of your time and workload and achieve your goals.
That’s how you can work smarter, not harder.
I hope my ten top time management tips will help you to do that.
How I can help:
I am a Business Coach and Trainer specialising in time management and productivity and the founder of Heads-up Coaching.
You can find out more at https://www.heads-up-coaching.com