4 Tips to Being Productive & Using Time Wisely : Under30CEO 4 Tips to Being Productive & Using Time Wisely : Under30CEO
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4 Tips to Being Productive & Using Time Wisely

| January 11, 2012 | 8 Comments

use time wiselyOn a daily basis, how many times do we hear our friends and co-workers make excuses that there isn’t enough time in a day to accomplish all their necessary tasks on time?

Far too many.

Coming from a college student who recently began developing his first startup, it has been quite difficult to balance the different assignments, projects and other outside activities such as piano performances, soccer matches throughout Florida, and assisting family in increasing business operations. However, by arranging a well-organized schedule, accomplishing these tasks successfully has not been as difficult as what others might assume. I can assure you that you DO have enough time to complete all the various errands and responsibilities; you just need to learn how to manage the given time adequately. Today, I’ll give you some tips on how to be efficient with your time, and if you pay attention, you might end up with a little bit of time left over.

Make Lists

I am fully aware that all of the time management articles around the web have “make lists” somewhere within the page. There is a reason for this: it actually works. This is by far one of the most efficient methods in order to achieve all the tasks in anyone’s hectic day.

I know I speak for many when I say the iPhone is the most convenient and practical piece of technology invented so far. It’s where I write my thoughts, ideas, and most importantly, my daily list. Whether it’s a meeting, an assignment, or chores that have to be completed, I always type what I have to do and when it has to be done by. When making lists, it is important to arrange the tasks in order of importance; by finishing the most crucial tasks first, and then completing the remaining accordingly.

Stay away from the television

Watching television makes you stupid. Honestly, ask yourself about the advantages of watching TV. Can’t think of any, right? I questioned several close friends & relatives and nearly all of them agreed. It’s the truth, there are no advantages of watching television, unless it’s these types of shows. We should watch videos that inspire us; shows that can help us succeed in the future. You’re reading this article for a reason, it’s mostly because you want to go forward and thrive. Right now you’re not watching television; your brain is active and constantly absorbing valuable information. Take for instance this quotation from Steve Jobs: “You watch television to turn your brain off and you work on your computer when you want to turn your brain on.” Let’s always keep our brain on.

What’s more important?

Take a day off from going out with your friends and focus on your short and long-term goals. Ask yourself whether going to the game with the guys or watching a movie with the gals is more important than what your boss or professor asked you to finish over the weekend. Make your list and place the most important tasks at the top.

There will always be that one Friday or Saturday night that you want to go out and take a break from all the weekday busyness. Your friends will be on your ass about working too much, or focusing too much on the special project you’ve wanted to complete. This is normal, but do not let your conscience run you over. I’m not saying never have fun, but it is crucial to always keep focus on priorities and decide what is more important.

Don’t wait until the last minute

Assuming that a vast majority of our readers may still be attending undergraduate or graduate school, procrastination plays a major role in blocking a student’s ability to complete their assignments. From personal experience, waiting to complete an assignment until the last minute is usual among college students, it’s either waiting until the last day or the morning of, but that is a habit that we have to begin departing from. I honestly do carry this nasty habit and it’s always ended up being quite successful for the turn out. But some day, something strange will occur and then I’ll be the one suffering. So in order to prevent this from happening, I began to complete my assignments to its entirety and with some time left over for revisions. Remember what our moms have always told us: it’s better to be safe than sorry.

When we think of time management, it is important to be aware that we don’t really manage time; we manage our activities. By managing our activities appropriately, we become much more productive and dynamic when it comes to completing our tasks and you will be surprised how much time left over you will have when the day comes to a close. If you follow these tips correctly, I promise you will begin to notice some changes. Let us know how it goes & thank you for taking the time to read our article. Happy holidays to all our readers and have a prosperous and productive 2012!

Javier Duarte is a determined college entrepreneur who recently began working on Keen Empire, his first start-up. You can learn more about him at about.me/javidee or connect with him through twitter: @javivo.

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  • http://www.asianefficiency.com/ Thanh Pham

    You’re on point Javier. If you can make your lists on your iPhone sync up with your desktop you have no excuse of missing anything off your list. I’ve also cut off TV completely from my life. That doesn’t mean I don’t watch TV shows anymore – I usually watch them on my own time on Netflix.

    Thanks for writing this up! Good stuff.

  • http://twitter.com/javideez Javier Duarte

    Thanks for the comment, Thanh!

    That’s exactly what I do, a great app that I usually recommend is Wunderlist. It’s awesome when tons of work suddenly appear and we become overwhelmed. Definitely recommend checking it out. Agree with you regarding TV, every once in a while we should all take a break.

    Glad you enjoyed the article, have a great one!

    Javier.

  • Anonymous

    I want to add a couple here that have REALLY helped me.

    1. Use a COUNTDOWN TIMER.

    This helps me because I have to race against the clock to get it all done. Maybe it’s a competitive sports things but then you’ve got a timer running out in front of your face, it puts the heat on.

    2. Choose a WEEKLY REWARD for completing all of your mission critical items.

    I often choose LARGE rewards to ensure that I complete everything that I want and don’t want to finish.  When I focus on the reward, the tasks that I hate get  done much faster.

    I hope you can benefit from these!

    Oh also,

    You can check out my productivity eBook “20 Productivity Boosting Methods for the Positive Mind” here –> http://www.millionairementorsaccess.com.

  • Anonymous

    It’s best to schedule the television time in as well if it’s nothing more than in your free time.  It really makes a huge difference in my productivity anyway.

    Thanks!

  • Amanda Walls

    I really love this blog, which is why I have it on my Google Reader, but I disagree with some of this. I read it this morning and couldn’t stop thinking about it! I consider myself strangely obsessed with organization and time management so I whole-heatedly agree with making lists! There is something that is so satisfying with crossing an item off the list, and seeing an empty sheet of paper at the end of the day. I do, however, completely disagree with cutting out television and the “what’s more important” point. I have one single reason for both of these – entertainment. When I first opened by business, I worked 24/7 and I quickly realized that isn’t what I want. That’s not what I thought I signed up for. I realized that if I made lists, and scheduled my work during the day, I could go out at night and watch as much TV as I want to. I started my business so that I would have more freedom, not so I was working all day and night. Everybody has to think of themselves first and, in my opinion, if watching TV and going out every Friday and Saturday night is fun, than please do it! I know I do and I am a better person because of it!

  • http://www.i95dev.com/ecommerce-magento Henry Louis

    Hi Javier! I have very impressed with your time management tips. And I totally agree with your opinion. As mentioned here, it is very important to focus our attention on short and long term goals. Nice post.

  • http://twitter.com/javivo Javier Duarte

    Amanda, I’d like to thank you for actually taking the time to read and comment on this article!

    I agree with you 100%, all of us need some kind of entertainment every once in a while. However, what I’m trying to get to our readers is that we shouldn’t do a certain activity when we know that there are other more important tasks to be done.
    “I’m not saying never have fun, but it is crucial to always keep focus on priorities and decide what is more important.”

    Hope this cleared it up a little.
    Thanks, once again.

    Javier

  • http://twitter.com/javivo Javier Duarte

    Awesome, those are some great tips as well!

    Thanks, will check out the eBook.