With the new calendar year and the slowly increasing supply of light here in Wisconsin, I’m thinking a lot about time.
It seems to me that time – how we think about it and how we use it – has a huge impact on our success.
Accordingly, the following four tactics all involve ways we can get the most out of our most precious resource:
Here’s a potential conundrum – I’ve never met a working person who has too much time. We’re all, always, perpetually time-strapped, thundering from one fire to the next, huffing and puffing through our working days. I’ve also never met anyone whose career couldn’t benefit from a little extra help, whether that’s as simple as networking a bit more or as complex as a complete career makeover. The thing is, to get ahead in the new year we all need to face this challenge head on and make time to do what our careers need.
We all have our time sucks. Maybe yours is Twitter, or chatting with colleagues a bit longer than necessary. To get ahead, identify and minimize your time sucks. It’s also helpful to identify other ways in which you make things take a little longer than they need to. My hang-up is research. I like finding things out, what can I tell you. However, 50-word summaries really don’t require three sources… Maybe you can find similar areas where you slow yourself down unnecessarily.
O.K., this phrase is a bit of a stretch but the concept is very important. I want to encourage all of us to focus and let our ideas rise to fullness and bake in our brains until they’re well done. We’ve all become so involved with multitasking that we think it’s the key to efficiency. Actually, it isn’t. Multitasking is generally the key to doing many things in a half-baked fashion at the same time. Studies show that focusing on one thing at a time usually leads to working better, faster and smarter. So take the time to concentrate until something is well done – and say good bye to half-baked efforts.
For yourself. All work and no play really will make you dull eventually. It will take the edge off your thinking, your productivity and your reaction time. Give yourself a break now and again to rejuvenate yourself and you’ll find you go much farther this new year.
by Danielle Dresden