And when the time comes to get back to work, we fall apart. We utilize our skills of procrastination, and as a result - since we don't prepare, we fail at managing our time.
Story of my life.
But hey, its still summer, and most of us are enjoying it pretty well. I hate to break it to you - but the time to get back to work is creeping up on us. Heck, I have to go back to school in 29 days.
So why not prepare when you HAVE the time?
There are three key steps on how to manage your time wisely, and I'm not talking about those generic organizational skills (list your priorities, order of importance, etc). That stuff comes in handy, but these steps come before that.
In order to follow the three steps, we first need to answer this question:
Why do we need to manage our time? Time is limited, and we need to spend it wisely. Because one day, one hour, one second could be the last moment of our lives. We have to realize that our time is just as short as our elder's. Once that idea is ingrained into our brains, we will be able to understand that wasting our time isn't the way to enjoy our life, using it is.
Step One: Understanding the Concept of Time
I did a post called "Stop Wasting Your Time" back in January in which I described the importance of time. There is a quote by Dion Bucicault that states: "Men talk of killing time, while time quietly kills them." Time is a very big word. I could give you Webster's definition, but that would simply bore you. Understanding the concept of time is as colossal as understanding the meaning of life. I've done my share of research about the concept, one being something I do on Facebook called "365 Days". I have a photo album in which I upload a picture every day for a year. Today's picture will be the 217th. I use this album as a mnemonic device that teaches me the concept of memory and about the passage of time. I've realized that a clock is useless. To me, time is is the measurement of how long your memory extends. We, as humans, choose to define this measurement in units of seconds, minutes, hours, days, and years. But to truly take advantage of time, we must extend our memory by keeping our eyes open to our surroundings.
Step Two: Appreciate the Concept
Appreciation of the concept of time is a direct result of understanding it. Instead of dreading over a time limit, we should appreciate the limit given. This optimistic view will prevent procrastination and will allow us to finish the task ahead quickly and effectively. The problem is, most of us don't appreciate what is given to us. For example, when a teacher gives you an assignment that requires you to complete 40 problems, and tells you its due tomorrow at the beginning of class, our natural instinct is to complain about the time limit. Don't complain. Appreciate the idea that the teacher gave you even that much time to complete the assignment. Don't doubt your ability to extend your mental clock.
Step Three: Use Your Time
This is the step most of us stop at for some odd reason. Sure, we accept the fact that we must understand and appreciate time, but then we don't know how to use it. This is the part where all the organizational skills come in handy. Listing your priorities, organizing them by importance, will all aid in allowing you to effectively use your time. Don't be afraid to spend your time. We are so hesitant to spend time, just like we are hesitant to spend money. But just like money, if you don't spend time, you don't make time.
Now quit wasting your time, and actually follow these steps to time management!
-That's the TFAT.