Time and Using Yours like Beyonce
In an age where time is undoubtedly the most valuable commodity we possess, effective time management is an invaluable skill. Below, Carat Sydney's Senior Strategy Director, Katie Rockliff, shares her tips on making the most of every minute.
It’s been said in certain circles that us mere mortals have the same number of hours in the day as Beyoncé. Love her or leave her, you have to admit – there is a woman who, by age thirty, had done more with her years than most of us hope to accomplish in a lifetime (can you tell I’m a fan?).
Anyway, Queen Bey knows nothing if not how to maximise return on time spent.
And in an age where time is undoubtedly the most valuable commodity we possess, that is an invaluable skill. *So is being able to dance like a goddess, but that’s really beside the point.
Anyway, I don’t know anyone these days who would not describe themselves as perpetually time poor. In the era of ‘always on’, we have filled our every waking moment with (often multiple) activities, leaving a great many of us wondering how, despite doing so much, we could be apparently accomplishing so little.
Where is the time for all of the important stuff – family, friends, fun; the pursuit of our passions?
So, I’ve decided that to combat my late night stewing, make the most of my 168 hour weeks, and ultimately bring myself closer to ‘living Bey’, I’m going to start to make my time count.
Here are my three steps to success:
ONE: LAY A STRONG FOUNDATION
- TRACK YOUR TIME: They don’t call it ‘sands through the hour-glass’ for nothing. Time’s a slippery sucker; the trick is to track it. Log your weekly time and get to know where it goes.
- PRIORITISE: It’s time to get brutal with your task list and start eliminating any non-essentials. We are often too lenient with the activities we let invade our to-do list – start with a stricter door list.
- GIVE IT AWAY FOR SOMETHING GOOD: Allocate some time to a charity or ‘do-good’ project; research has proven that dedicating our time to a cause leaves us feeling happier than the equivalent time spent on ourselves.
TWO: SET STRUCTURE FOR YOURSELF
- SET YOURSELF TIME LIMITS: Efficiency is about results, not time spent. Understand what it is you’re trying to achieve with every activity on your to-do list, allocate a set time to accomplish that goal, and don’t drift.
- BREAK IT DOWN TO BABY STEPS: If you have a daunting task, break it down into multiple stages. This gives you a better chance of succeeding, more opportunities for reward, and less room for procrastination.
- MAKE TIME FOR MEDITATION: Your brain needs time to rest and re-boot. Ideally dove-tail your list making with 10 minutes meditation and you’re well on your way to a more productive tomorrow.
THREE: LEARN TO LET GO
- IDENTIFY INEFFICIENCIES: Making the modern connected life work in our favour requires identifying and eliminating ‘inefficiencies’ in your weekly log. So whether it’s virtual grocery shopper, travel planner, flight tracker, event organizer, parking concierge, or coffee fast-lane, make your biggest time vampire – the smartphone – work in your favour.
- DELEGATE LIKE A BOSS: Our biggest hindrance is the belief we can or should do everything ourselves. Learn to lean on and empower others. Whether it’s your team, family or the proverbial ‘village’ – deploy your diplomacy to work together and not alone.
- RELAX AND RE-FOCUS: At the end of the proverbial day, you mightn’t have achieved all you set out to. So what? Rather than worry about all that you haven’t done, spend 10 minutes re-working that weekly plan, manage expectations of any stakeholders, put it down on paper, and then as Elsa says ‘Let it go’.
Feeling in control, organised and on top of your game allows you the freedom and head space required for spontaneity, curiosity, and creativity.
Creativity ultimately leads to innovation – which can result in more money, a more fulfilled life, professional development, or all of the above. Economically it’s where we’re headed – the fact is that balanced, happy people create better more exciting work, resulting in happier more excited clients.