As we begin to adjust to the reality that remote work and virtual connections are the new normal, we’re also being asked to adjust the way we manage time.
It’s safe to say that our expectations on what it means to be productive may have become unrealistic.
Have we been filling our calendars to prove that we could stay productive while everything around us came to a grinding halt?
Well, there’s some truth to that.
Being able to slow down and eventually accept the current situation allows us to slowly navigate a new reality with success. In order to do that effectively, it helps to revisit some wisdom on time management.
Here are five articles related to time management, including frameworks to help us work smarter, reminders to lead from a state of mindfulness, and new methodologies that will shift our understanding of how time management works.
1. Start with this easy 7-step plan to give you more time each day.
At the heart of this article is a framework for building a new habit. Like the article says, the actions and choices you make today have a compounding impact on how much time you have in the future. In other words, poor time management today could lead to a back-log of work later. The framework borrows from the concept of money management and makes some great observations about treating the time in your day like an investment.
2. How to be a super achiever instead of an over achiever.
This is a simple read from Addicted2Success, but this type of article always serves as a great reminder of some powerful truths. Over achievers have something to prove to others. Super achieves only have something to prove to themselves. To be a super achiever, figure out who you want to be, and then work to make that a reality. Equally important is the need to nurture yourself when you hit your limitations. This is about finding balance along the way.
3. 25 ways to simplify your life.
This article by Frank Sonnenberg discusses the idea that our lives are as complicated as we make them. That’s a hard pill to swallow in today’s world. We have been hit hard with a changing environment that’s been asking a lot from us. And while we navigate today’s new world, let’s also remember that we can allow ourselves to let some things go to find balance and relief. And that’s just one of the 25 ways to simplify your life that Frank outlines in this article.
4. 15 time management tips for achieving your goals.
This article from Entrepreneur provides a basic list of great tips. The one I gravitated to, however, is #6 – install keystone habits. This is a reference to Charles Duhig’s book titled, The Power of Habit. He coined the term “keystone habit” to identify those habits we develop that set the foundation for who we want to be and how we show up. This helps us to create effective habits, while also letting go of ineffective habits that may hold us back.
5. Time management is about more than life hacks.
Granted, this article from Harvard Business Review appeared in January, before productivity in the workplace really shifted, but the underlying message here is especially relevant in today’s environment. It’s important to remember that time management is a decision-making process requiring us to adjust as environmental conditions around us change. The author goes deep into his three-pronged approach: awareness, arrangement, and adaptation. It’s good stuff.
On a final note, if we take the time to stop and reflect after a full day, what we want to assess is this:
- Am I still on the right path?
- Have I chosen a career that’s taking me where I want to go?
- Am I living my most authentic life?
- Are the things I’m spending time on today helping me answer these questions?
If you’re struggling with these questions and finding there’s a disconnect, then find the moments in these articles that help you find balance with your time. The first step is to practice saying no until you feel comfortable with it. Then, practice filling the time you’ve reserved for yourself with something that puts you back on your path. Start slow and try to feel comfortable in what’s uncomfortable.
That’s how we move forward.
Christina Holloway is an executive coach and business coach. She helps executives and entrepreneurs grow their companies faster, create results-driven teams, and increase profitability. She has been featured in Forbes, The Huffington Post, Addicted2Success and Fast Company. If you’re interested in working with Christina, take a look at her strategy sessions and contact her to get started.