Kim Kirmmse Toth - Small Business Coach

Don’t We All Have the Same 24 Hours in a Day?

MP3 File

I am pretty sure we do. Then why is it that some people get so much done in one day and then others moan that there aren’t enough hours in the same day?

I used to think I was a success because I could multi task so well. I could hold a baby, do laundry, cook dinner and pay bills all at the same time. What a hero!

I also used to think I could multi task well with my work life also, but that clearly didn’t work out well for me. I would end up with a task that I started but then went to another task I felt needed to be done now, and then back to the first task at hand and my day continued.

Clearly, I wasn’t being as productive as I could have been and I really needed to be better at this. I was not getting things done and was feeling very frustrated because heck! I was always working!

I knew I had to figure out a better way and I have. I have used tips and tricks from people who know, from Dan Kennedy and Julie Morgenstern to others.

Here are some I offer to you and suggest you give it a try.

• Set aside certain times during the day to look at and respond to email. Do NOT take a look at your inbox every time you computer pings. I know it’s tempting but don’t. Just turn off your sound.

• Work in 45 minute increments. I use a kitchen timer at my desk. In the remaining 15 minutes of the hour I can check email, get more iced tea, pet the dogs etc.

• Batch your phone calls. Either do them in the extra 15 minutes after your 45 minutes of work or set a certain amount of time in the morning and in the afternoon. Stick to it!

• Batch your time away from your office; home or otherwise. Take a colleague to lunch, run your errands or anything else that takes you away from your office in batches. This will keep you from running around every day of the week.

So, how does this sound to you? Does it make sense? I promise you this has made my life much more organized and it feels more in control. I know that each Thursday I go to Toastmasters. So what does that mean? It means while I am out, dressed decently and showered I do my other ‘outside the office’ things. I go to lunch, I run errands and get all those time consuming trips out of my way in one outing.

This also means the days I am in my home office I only have to focus on my work without other disruptions.

One more trick to help chunk down your time is to create a plan of action. Begin with estimating how long a particular task will take you. Do this with each task you have for the day or for the week. When you take a look at them all now you can make decisions about which ones you chose to handle, which ones you may not at all because they aren’t worth the time and which ones you might delegate.

Procrastination comes from having too many tasks, not breaking them down into doable pieces, and getting totally overwhelmed. Then you do nothing or you putz around thinking you are accomplishing things but you are not.

I suggest you start out simply and easily. Take a single task, work or otherwise, and set aside the time you think it will take you. If it’s huge, chunk it down into smaller pieces.

This is the key, right here. Allow NO interruptions until the task is completed. Bar any emergency, do not answer the phone, answer emails or chat with someone. Stay focused, take breaks, organize your time wisely and you will be amazed at how much you can get accomplished!
I hope this is helpful to you and that you can move past thinking “I am such a good multi tasker” with pride.

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  1. Miriam Ortiz y Pino
    Apr 15, 2010

    Great ideas Kim. Becoming aware, batching tasks and focused bits of the day are 3 of the secrets to time & task management that I share with my clients too.

  2. Kim
    Apr 11, 2015

    I understand and I go more deeply into all of this with my clients. Its very hard, if not impossible, to into depth with a simple article.

    But glad it was helpful for you!

  3. mechanicalbuzz
    Dec 05, 2015

    thanks for sharing this post i really like this post alot its really hard to find quality posts like this

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