Improve time management habits by using tools, such as a timer, a task list and a daily calendar. Blocking all distractions and allowing for rewards when time is managed properly may also help. People who have difficulty managing time or creating new habits sometimes report that setting small goals helps tremendously when initially learning time management habits. Using accountability partners may also be an effective tool for improving time management skills.
Using a simple timer can help people with poor time management skills stay on task. An egg timer can be set for an established period of time and used to help a person focus on a single task while the timer counts down. This technique has been known to help people avoid procrastination, as well as distractions that often cause bad time management.
Creating reasonable schedules and tasks lists also help strengthen time management habits. During times established for productivity, many find it helpful to have a running list of tasks that need to be accomplished. For some, however, a simple task list is not enough and a strict schedule is needed so that tasks are broken down into regimented time frames. It is not unusual for those focused on improving time management skills to use both of these tools to increase daily productivity.
At the end of each day or each week, an assessment of time management habits should be taken and improvements should be rewarded. Rewards may be anything positive, such as a set amount of time spent on a leisurely activity. Such should only be enjoyed, however, when time management goals have been met or exceeded.
Selecting other people as accountability partners can be a tremendous help in improving time management habits. A partner may be a single person or a group of people. Frequent contact with these individuals is important, however, as it is necessary to regularly report progress, setbacks and special challenges. It also helps if accountability partners are also working on developing better time management skills, as such is generally accompanied by a greater understanding of the difficulties of overcoming bad time management habits.
The act of improving time management habits almost always begins with identifying areas of weakness and learning to live by a new set of daily routines. For many, working on improving one time management habit at a time or a very limited number of habits is easier than trying to overcome chronically poor management of time all at once. Time management habits often take time before improvement is realized, so being patient with the process is also an important tip to remember.