Women often say they wish there were more hours in their day. Time management isn’t a new concept; a lot of women use lists, planners and apps to help stay on track. Yet nearly 50 percent of women say they don’t have enough free time, according to a study by the Families and Work Institute. So how can women use all the time management tools available to their advantage – and still have some time for themselves when all the work is complete? How can women achieve leadership goals but still be happy and healthy?
Here are some ways you can manage your day and still remember your spirit as an entrepreneur or as an employee.
Itemize Things on Your List
Begin by composing a list of the tasks you need to do the upcoming week – work and personal. This includes tasks that must get done, not your wish list or what others have asked you to do. From the list, see what tasks you can delegate to other people in your company or at home. If you find that other things are taking precedence over your personal time and you constantly sacrifice your needs and wants, you need to make some changes.
Review Your List and Make Decisions
Your list is probably much too lengthy to be realistic. When you’re feeling overwhelmed remember to prioritize time for yourself. Set aside a few chunks of time where you can exercise, read or talk to a friend. Then, decide which tasks are top priorities so you know how many things you have to accomplish. Handling the tasks that are most important and crossing those off your list will help take pressure off of you. Remember that you aren’t procrastinating – you will still get to other tasks, but the scattered list of things that aren’t urgent can wait.
Set boundaries in your relationships and keep promises to yourself. Most of us would never break promises we made to another person, or would feel guilt-ridden for days if we did. But we often break promises to ourselves without thinking twice about it. Remember that you matter enough to keep promises to yourself.
While we will never have more than 24 hours in our day, we will always have power over how productive we are during those hours. Time management is more than simply the ability to write out an organized schedule. Truly managing your time means making smart decisions, setting reasonable goals, and defining boundaries that let you keep the promises you make to others—and to yourself.
How do you balance a busy work and home life?