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Where Did The Time Go?

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Where Did The Time Go?

That expression is usually rhetorical. But, do you really know where your time is going?

If you are a normal human you can identify with that question. Sometimes we check the time and are struck by how quickly it has passed.

I recommend that you conduct an audit of how you spend your time. That action is one of the most transformational activities that you can undertake.

We hold mental images of who we are and what is important to us. However, it is what we do that defines us. How we spend our time is what gives us our true identity.

This time audit will expose the real YOU.

 

What is involved?

The requirement is that you track how you use each 24-hour day for 30 days.

The intention is not to place an additional burden on your time. Consequently, avoid using methods that take a lot of time.

It is important that you record events and activities as close as possible to their occurrence. Do not sit at night recording what you recall about the day’s activities.

You will get an amazing bonus from recording who initiates each action. Note down who made the contact or who gave the assignment. Slip in the nature and duration of each activity.

Here is one value of identifying who is involved in your activities – especially those initiated by others:

“Interruptions” are identified as one the major challenges to be overcome by my Time & Task Management participants. In many instances, the principal culprit is a supervisor who considers herself to be super-efficient. Reduce top-down interruptions with this strategy.

Some supervisors are guilty of blurting. Here is an example of blurting in action:

Jane starts her day by going through her incoming mail and To Do List. As she goes through she takes immediate action.

Item 3 requires John to do something. Jane summons John.

Item 5 involves John. Jane contacts John. And the process continues.

While Jane is being seemingly efficient, she is making it difficult for John to manage his time effectively. Organizations suffer badly from poor TIME TEAMWORK.

We must function as teams and the focus should be on how the team uses its time and not just the individual.

The time audit is the perfect antidote to blurting.

John might not have the luxury of telling Jane that she is negatively impacting his productivity. However, he could refer to this article and its recommended time audit exercise.

He can share from the audit the frequency, duration and content of his contact with Jane. He could translate that into dollars using his rate of pay x 2.

If Jane is a worthy team leader, the information should make compelling reading. The parties could then agree to meet at specified times during the day. Any issue that arises in between meetings will be held until the next session. Jane’s blurting would have been moderated.

Of course, Jane does not have the monopoly on interruptions. John’s time audit will identify the interactions that he has on a regular basis. He can then determine if that is the most effective use of his time and make the necessary adjustment.

True You

The Time Audit adds another dimension to self-discovery. It will highlight whether your professed commitments are supported by concrete action. It points to habits good and bad that have entered into your reality.

I strongly urge that you complete this 30-day, 24-hour audit of how you spend your time. Who, what, how often and how much are all laid out for your review and decision-making.

As an added incentive for men, John can also use the audit to highlight to his wife the absence of certain activities. Wives will point to the need for more quality time together.

BOMDAS followers we are at Addition: Brackets|Of|Multiplication|Division|Addition|Subtraction.

Access the series here: http://jamaica-gleaner.com/ Enter in search: Outlook Trevor E S Smith

Register now for the SHRM accredited 3-D Leader Certification course. November 6 & 7. Kingston/face-to-face.

The next cohort of the ICF/SHRM accredited Certified Behavioural Coach Award will be January 2016.

E-mail: info[at]swpacademy.com

Trevor E S Smith is a Behaviour Modification Coach with the Success with People Academy, Extended DISC/FinxS.

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Stop Wasting Your Time

Where DidTheTimeGo_selfcreated

In conducting Time & Task Management workshops for many years less than 5% of participants believe that they have enough time. Still less believe that they have control over their time.

It gets worse. To date, no one has convincingly won my 168 hour challenge. Take the challenge and see how much time you are wasting.

We have 24 x 7 = 168 hours each week. Using traditional work week figures, it means that each week we have 4 shifts plus one 8-hour day each week. The challenge is to assume that you were reporting to a strict supervisor for each shift/day. In that context, justify your effective use and performance on each of the 4 shifts plus your 8-hour part-time engagement.

A quick disclaimer: This is not about being robots and putting in mega working hours. This is about leading a holistic life that is balanced and fulfilling. Indeed, you might decide not to allocate a single hour to work.

For example, you could decide to invest your time resources in rest and relaxation (R&R). But even then could you satisfy your 5 supervisors about your performance on each shift? Would the hours spent with the TV watching you qualify as effective R&R?

The challenge is to justify your effective use of the 4 shifts plus one work day that you are given every single week.

The consistent realization is that we have hours that we can’t account for. We can’t identify where they went and we are unable to allocate them to any category other than – Miscellaneous (more correctly – Missing.)

Yet, time is our most valuable asset. STOP WASTING YOUR TIME!

Reflect for a moment on a recent well spent hour.  What if you could add 8 of those each week, year after year?

My promise is that if you dedicate 8 structured hours per week to any endeavour you are going to develop very high levels of proficiency at it. You could achieve almost anything.

Recovering 1 hour per day for more effective use can transform your life. Make a commitment now to identify more effective use for 8 hours each week.

You can break it up. You could do 30 minutes in the morning or at lunch time and another 30 minutes at evening time. Others might prefer to block out chunks of 3 hours twice per week plus 2 one-hour sessions on the weekend. (This is the formal study model).

You can also target different areas and objectives.  Devotion early morning, exercise late afternoon, professional development early evening and proper R&R thereafter.

I recommend 8 areas that should be addressed to achieve a balanced and fulfilled life (not in order of importance).

  1. Family
  2. Career
  3. Spiritual
  4. Social interaction
  5. Financial stability
  6. Health
  7. Personal development
  8. Leisure

Complete an exercise from my Time & Task Management workshops that invariably brings participants to a fuller appreciation of what is really important to them.

Imagine that there is consensus among doctors that you have six months to live. Get a sheet of paper. Draw a line down the middle. Shut out all distractions. Spend the next 10 minutes listing on the left “Things I will do” and on the right “Things I will not do”.

It is amazing how different those lists are from your current reality. Things that dominate your thoughts lose their importance and neglected areas come to the fore: “Will”, “God”, “Travel”, “Relationships” are constants. “Work” heads the list on the right. The truth is in reality we might have less than six months left. Take the time to make the best use of today.

STOP WATCHING YOUR TIME GO DOWN THE DRAIN!

TimeGoingDownTheDrain

Send your 168 hour challenge to me and complete a very private “Do/Not Do list.”

BOMDAS followers we are at Addition: Brackets|Of|Multiplication|Division|Addition|Subtraction.

To access this entire series go to http://jamaica-gleaner.com/ Enter in search: Outlook Trevor E S Smith

Register now for the SHRM accredited 3-D Leader Certification course or the next cohort of the ICF accredited “Certified Behavioural Coach Award”. Great use of your time!

E-mail: info[at]swpacademy.com

Trevor E S Smith is a Behaviour Modification Coach with the Success with People Academy, Extended DISC/FinxS.

TV discipline…

Replace one of your regular TV shows with work on a life goal. Apply the same level of discipline. Do not miss the start time and stay with it to the very end. Turn down all invitations, phone calls etc. so that you do not miss “your show.”

If you keep to the task with the same regularity and fervor as with the TV show you will be amazed at the success that you will achieve in achieving one of your life goals.