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Identify Your Time Wasters

Time Management = Time Freedom

Identify Time Wasters

As we talked about earlier this week, we all have the same amount of time each day and each week.  How we use this time most often determines our success and satisfaction in life. Time wasters can be both frustrating and distracting.  In fact, studies have shown that if your concentration is removed from a task it can take fifteen to thirty minutes to get back on track. And even more time is lost if the interruption was dramatic! Yikes! One of the most important time management tasks you can undertake is to identify your time wasters.  These time wasters can be people, tasks, habits, things, your own personality quirks, etc. that get in the way of being more effective with your time.

Some common time wasters:

  • Getting lost in email
  • Losing sense of time, place, and space while on the Internet
  • Lengthy or unnecessary phone calls
  • Habitual visitors (Scott Adams, of Dilbert fame, calls this person “Camping Carl!”   He camps out anywhere there is a warm body with ears!
  • Not being aware of your natural bio rhythms and effective work times
  • Constant interruptions (email, television, phone, visitors)
  • Perfectionism:   Leads to “paralysis by analysis” aka “nothingness”
  • Procrastination
  • Disorganization (both mind and matter)
  • Indecision:   Any decision is better than no decision
  • Allowing any type of drama to continually play out in your life (drains time and energy)
Take a day or two to think about the time wasters in your life.  Think about the time of day you are most creative.   Think about the time of day when you are most relaxed.   Think about what you are doing when you lose all sense of time and space.   Then jot down additional thoughts that come to mind about distracting co-workers, tasks, and Internet activities.   Use the above activities to help get your time and your life back on schedule.
“Money, I can either gain or lose.  But time I can only lose.  So, I must spend it carefully.”

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Judy W Bell

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