Everybody has 24 hours in a day and everybody who’s anybody wants to get more done in a day. How do they get it? By managing their time. To do that, there’s a slew of time management books, courses, tools, and the all empowering time management apps – the new time management and productivity tools that promise to help you nail the productivity game only to, more often than not, make it harder to get any actual work done.
How Time Management Tools Can Kill Your Time
At the outset, the problem with time management and productivity tools and applications is their sheer number. There are way too many apps out there to make sense of it all and by the time you do get on to exploring one, a new shiny app comes up on the horizon and you invariably end up downloading it. Why? Besides the fact that you are likely obsessed with managing your time, credits to the app marketing guys for some great work!
At a deeper level, most people choose time management tools that don’t gel with the way they think and work, don’t synchronize across all their digital devices, or they jump too soon from one tool to another, always wondering ‘what’s the latest app?’ thereby wasting valuable time and energy in the process. Some tools are so complicated that up to 80% of the people fail to keep pace. The trick is to keep it simple and let yourself not be led by the latest and loudest trends for managing time is a farce – you can only manage your own self. How? By not wasting your time doing any of the 3 things below.
What NOT to do if you want your time to actually be WELL SPENT
#1 Trying to be productive: In a productivity-obsessed crazy world, the only way to avoid wasting your time on the umpteen new and old productivity hacks, tools, and advice is to STOP TRYING. Simply focus on what works for you – be it a chaotic work desk, working at odd hours, working while walking on the treadmill, or whatever else may be your thing – if it sounds quirky, be it. Rather than managing your time to increase productivity, manage your energy instead – it’s a powerful combination of three dimensions i.e. the emotions, spirit, and the mind that combine to make and renew your energy.
#2 Trying to DIY everything: Think you can manage everything yourself using the latest technologies? Truth is, no productivity tool reflects work-life balance. If you really want to nail it, hire a virtual assistant – someone who understands the way you work and unwind, can schedule your workdays and off days efficiently, and can with time, grow to be an extension of yourself. Trust, delegate, and focus only on what matters most. Know the old saying that goes ‘People on their deathbed never say, “I wish I spent more time at work.’?
#3 Trying to follow fads: Humans have an enormous tendency to conform – to norms, societal pressures, and also to fads. Why? Because it boosts our ego – that we can shirk our comforts and punish our bodies in the pursuit of success gives us a kick. So if you’ve been wasting your time trying to be a morning person or a gym person/ runner or a productive procrastinator or trying to follow the famous ‘4-hour work week’ philosophy – STOP right now. Know what works for you and stick to it. PERIOD.