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While there never seems to be enough time in the day to get everything that needs to get done finished, it is possible to learn some time management tracking skills and how to better manage personal and professional time. Some of the most useful tips include tracking the use of time, evaluating ways to cut back time on unnecessary tasks, investing in time management software and using time management tools.
The first rule of time management tracking is to keep a journal, notebook or some form of system for tracking the use of time. This may seem tedious at first, but it is much easier to figure out ways to better manage time when it has been accounted for. Tracking how the day is spent for about two to four weeks will give a true picture of where the majority of time is being spent.
The process can be as simple as keeping a journal. The journal should track pretty much every minute of the day. For example, the journal may chronicle that a person spends 30 minutes each morning checking and responding to emails and four hours every evening reading blogs and online news stories on the Internet.
Once there is a written journal or proof of where time is going, then the person can figure out how to reconfigure their time. Reconfiguring time should involve limiting time spent on unproductive activities and redirecting this time to quality or productive activities. For example, if a business owner checks his or her email all day long, this takes the business owner away from sales and more productive activities that make the business money. Instead, the business owner can check their email once in the morning, once at lunch and once before he or she closes for the night. They will see this frees up a lot of time to devote to more productive and lucrative activities in the business.
There are also plenty of time management tracking software programs and tools available to help guide people in tracking and using their time more wisely and effectively. Special calendar systems, electronic software programs that sync with cell phones or other electronic calendars and more exist to help with time management tracking.
Time management tracking should be an ongoing task. Those interested in becoming more efficient and productive need to continuously evaluate time wasting activities and redirect this time to more important tasks.
I have a program on my computer that tracks the sites I go to and how much time I spend on each site. At a certain time each day it creates a report that flashes up on the screen.
I spend a lot of time on the net for work and we all know how easy it is to get distracted. It can be a helpful reminder sometimes to see the shocking amount of time you spend reading celebrity news or playing online games.
I have always suspected that I am lazier than the average person. A few years ago I decided to test it. I felt like I was getting nothing done and I wanted to see where my time was going. I knew that I was wasting it but I wasn't sure just how.
I printed out sheets of paper I made up in Word that had every hour of the day broken down into 10 minute increments. I organized them into a binder and carried them with me everywhere. At the end of every ten minute stretch I would make a quick note of how I had spent my time. I set my cell phone up to remind me every
ten minutes with a buzz.
Well after tracking and reviewing for about a week I realized how much time I spent messing around on the computer or watching TV or staring out the window etc. It was a wake up call. I can't say that I have gotten much better but I am more conscious of how I spend my time.
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