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Manage Your Time For Success

Aug 17, 2007
Time has different values in different cultures. In some it flows quickly and in others slowly.

It also has different values for different people.

Some consider it to be money. But time is more valuable than money because it cannot be renewed.

Some consider it to be a tyrant. They feel pressured by its passage. But time, like a river, is neutral.
It flows where it will regardless of what people think about it.

Some consider it to be a burden. They have too much of it. They spend their time trying to "kill time."

Then physicists and mystics even argue that it may not exist. They speculate that it may be merely a concept, a projection of our imagination.

Regardless of these differing views, one thing is clear: it is precious. It is precious because it is a non-renewing, diminishing resource. When we use it well, we can create happy and productive lives.

For all practical purposes, then, time is constant: 60 seconds per minute, 60 minutes per hour, 24 hours per day, 7 days a week.

Since our focus is success, we must consider managing time as an essential success skill.

For the practical, success-oriented person, time is neither a friend nor an enemy. It is a resource.
It is a master resource, because you use it to decide how to allocate other resources, like skill, effort and money.

Effective time management involves patience and practical thinking.

Time management itself can be explained as an exercise in creating order.

Using time well is ordering your actions and organizing your experiences. These are based on first deciding what is important to you. When you know what you need and want then you can decide how to best go about getting it.

Although a past experience cannot be recreated, we can learn from it and project a better future. For example, you can choose to learn something today that you can use tomorrow. In this way, you introduce a higher quality of experience into the future, an experience that you may have missed in the past because you did not have the right knowledge or skills.

Goal setting, then, is an essential aspect of time management. In determining any goal, you should start with a positive outlook. You must be excited by the challenges ahead to feel motivated to take action.
Your goal should be a blend of idealism and realism. It should be ideal because it forces you to reach to a new level. And it should be realistic because it allows you to access your current resources to get started on it.

When you decide how to reach your goal, it becomes a plan. Think of a plan as effort exerted over units of time. When you break the future into time frames, you can measure your progress as you proceed. Of course, all plans are only estimates.

Perhaps, you would like an example.

This morning, I had a clear desire to write this piece on how to manage time better. I then set a goal to write it. After planning when to do it, I surrendered to the flow of expressing my ideas as clearly as possible.

This is an example of time management because I could have just as easily spent the whole day in front of my computer playing online games. Yet if I had done that it would have given me less time to achieve my goal of writing and publishing an article on time management.
Now this may seem like a trivial example of time management. But consider its value when spread over a higher ideal over a longer period of time, like writing a book over the course of a year.

Thus, managing your time means (a) getting clear on your desires; (b) setting a goal; (c) making a plan; (d) feeling motivated; and (e) taking action.

Time management is a success tool because it is a process of establishing order over chaos, intention over accident, and purpose over whims.

In managing your time, you also have to take into account three influential variables: flexibility, mood, and bodily rhythms.

You need to be flexible because things have a way of taking longer than expected.

You need to be in the right mood because if you're angry, frustrated, or depressed you'll sabotage your plan before it has even unfolded.

And you need to remember that you are a time clock too. You work with your habits, your cycles, and your mental and physical rhythms. How you sleep, eat, exercise, or relate to others has a profound impact on how you manage your time.

When you manage your time, you create specific steps for success. This is the real value of all theories of time management.
About the Author
Saleem Rana would love to share his inspiring ideas. His book Never Ever Give Up tells you how. It is offered at no cost as a way to help YOU succeed. http://www.theempoweredsoul.com
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