You certainly know a dream catcher but the concept of TIME CATCHER must be novel for you. Last month I got the biggest blow of my life. I am a single mother, jobless, pursuing masters and truck load of bills to take care of. After spending sleepless nights of crying, I thought unless I get hold of all this, I will fail miserably. Upon delving it struck me that no matter how much I am appreciated to be well-organized, I am bad at time management. I list down things ‘to-do’ and plan to get them done by E.O.D. But in reality several things on that list sit there for weeks and even months.
So, I decided to be the Time Catcher. NO, I did not invent any D.I.Y tool or engage in any witch-craft to control time. I made some changes in my behavior and am determined to practice it daily to master the art.
Google it and you’ll find billions of articles on time-management. There will be Corporate Gurus lecturing about the dos and don’ts for successful careers. But I share here some very cardinal and practical rules for HAPPY TIME MANAGEMENT.
- Take your 30 minutes:
Begin your day in a prayer and by prayer I mean is a promise to yourself. The moment you wake up, no matter how late you are running, don’t run. A messy start will mess up your entire day. So, promise and pray to yourself that you are going to control every second of the day. Keep a little planner with you. If you love technology make notes on your Smartphone. Plan and schedule all the things that are important for the day. Planning things will save some time that usually wastes when you try to do the job hurriedly.
- Organize a simple list:
I was organized but my mistake was to jump on things and places that would leave me tired and grouchy at the end of the day. For instance I would plan a trip to the market specially to get the clothes repaired. I looked at my planner and thought why not plan a trip when I have to drop my kid to the dance class? It’s near to the market and while the clothes are being mended I can do some grocery. This way I ticked 3 to-dos of the list and left me grinning at the end. Take a better charge of that ‘list’ than just writing things and ticking them off.
- Never Ever Multi-task:
Yeah, I know people are always acknowledged for their multi-tasking skills. But it’s about time to take some pleasures on focusing and getting the things done perfectly. I started cultivating a habit in my kid of doing things creatively and as much accurately as possible. I applied the same rule on me. What I realized was not only my things got done efficiently but quicker than the regular time. As compared with multi-tasking, by doing one thing at a time left me with more time on my hands.
- Planning Spare Time:
Yes you read it right! The moment I get a call or text, I will immediately attend it. I then end up wasting an hour because I would check twitter, facebook and play games. This was because I never kept a tab on the time I spent on such interruptions. Then I planned on attending only the urgent calls. Even after attending the calls, I would not spare more than 3 minutes. I kept my tea time restricted for ½ hour and would check my FB or twitter updates. This way I could save some time and pursue my hobbies like sewing and D.I.Y crafts.
- Be Rational and Practical:
It is okay if you do not get some of the things done. On certain days there might be distractions or you might not be feeling it. There is no need to demoralize yourself over it and hope to get the things done next day. Science says that clutter and mess in the surrounding can pull down your energy levels. Tidy up sections little by little every day to become more efficient. Another interesting fact is about 20% of your thoughts and conversations produce 80% of your results. Have determined thoughts to not just to do the job but also save some time for yourself.
- Indulge in Pleasures:
Many people are aware about what they are passionate about, but most of them are unable to do it due to the lack of time. Motivate yourself by saying that managing time efficiently will leave you with time for your pleasures. In the beginning you may find it tough but soon you will create that little ‘me-time’ and indulge in it. This will keep your spirits high and you on track of time management. Go for brisk walks, listen to music, watch inspiring videos if you want but do something for sometime everyday to stay motivated.
All these little tricks are inter-linked and practicing them daily will transform you into a TIME CATCHER. Breathe in slowly and tell yourself that you should be controlling the time and not otherwise. Days when you are tired or unwell, ask for help. Engage your family members or roommates in your schedule. Divide activities and work on your comforts. Becoming a time catcher will make you feel energetic all the time and give you a better hold over your life.