Ask any teacher what do they want more of and they will tell you “time” The Stress Free Teacher has put together 30 ways in which to improve your time management skills to maximise your day and get the most out of the time you have!
1. Know yourself. First and foremost, you have to know who you are. You can’t structure your time effectively if you don’t understand your dreams, strengths, challenges, and priorities.
2. Create an action plan. When you plan to do something, create an action plan and give it all your focus.
3. Construct a system. Whether it’s electronic or paper-based, centered on tasks or goals or events, something you purchase or develop on your own, find a system that works for you.
4. Focus on your goals. If you have goals but you tend to get distracted, start by focusing on what you need to achieve and what it will take to make it happen.
5. Understand your patterns. Maybe you get a burst of energy in the mornings, hit your stride after working out at lunchtime, or think best in the late-night quiet.
6. Structure your time. Focus your energy on doing your most important activities when you’re most productive. Save routine chores for low-energy times.
7. Do the hard things first. Difficult tasks require more discipline. If you commit to doing the hardest things first, you will end up doing them with greater consistency.
8. Lace it with passion. Passion will move you beyond your limits and your shortcomings.
9. Create optimal deadlines. It’s crucial to create deadlines for yourself to help you achieve your goals. Think through what you want to accomplish and make your deadlines challenging but realistic.
10. Overcome procrastination. Procrastination is the top enemy of achievement, standing in the way of countless worthwhile goals. Get serious about becoming a person who gets things done.
11. Overcome fear. Fear is False Evidence Appearing Real. Don’t let what is false keep you from getting things done. Convert it instead to Face Everything And Recover.
12. If it’s important, put it on a schedule. It’s the best way to keep yourself on track.
13. Prioritize your to-do list. You can’t do everything, so learn to prioritize the important and let go of the rest.
14. Don’t obsess over unimportant details. Trying to make sure that every detail is exactly as you want it to be will bog you down.
15. Choose your battles. You win some, you lose some. Pick what is most important to hold on to and be willing to let go of the rest.
16. Stay motivated. Learn what keeps you motivated and inspire yourself daily.
17. Maintain momentum. Learn what it means to stay in motion no matter what comes your way. Momentum is key.
18. Stop worrying. Don’t waste time worrying about things that may not even happen. Focus instead on what you know and how you are going to be successful.
19. Manage your stress. Stress management is life management. Whether it’s exercise, meditation, prayer, family time, or social life, find what de-stresses you and schedule it regularly.
20. Stop multitasking. If you think you are being efficient by multitasking, think again. Focus on what you are doing, get it done, and move on to the next thing.
21. Initiate a routine. Routines increase productivity by making it easier to identify shortcuts and efficiencies.
22. Take notes. Save time by taking good notes, electronically or on paper. Develop a system to flag things you need to remember or act on.
23. Have an accountability partner. Communicate your schedule and goals with each other and meet regularly to keep each other accountable.
24. Think positively. Where your attention goes, so goes your emotional energy. Don’t think about what might go wrong; think about what could go right.
25. Delegate tasks. You may be able to do anything, but no one can do everything.
26. Pay people to do things that would cost you time. For everything you don’t like to do, there is someone you can hire who will enjoy doing it well.
27. Take breaks. Being busy doesn’t make you productive. Take a break to reset your energy.
28. Act now. If you read an e-mail, respond immediately. If you open a letter, act on it or throw it away. If you need to speak to someone, pick up the phone. There is great power in now.
29. Time yourself. If you tend to get distracted or procrastinate, time yourself. Set a timer for 25-minute intervals and commit to work without stopping or distraction in each block.
30. Turn off notifications. Every notification you get on your computer or phone is an interruption that diverts your attention from your work. They’re almost impossible to ignore, so turn them off.
Until next time,
Stress Free Teacher