Maximize your Effective Time: 4 – Critical steps
Would you like to manage time? Then the first thing to do is to learn how to control the speed with which the earth revolves around
The first step is to determine your purpose in life. You may define this in any way you like, but a good way is to first define it in an overall lifetime context and then to break it down into smaller goals over shorter periods. For example, my life purpose is; “To light up the world by igniting minds”
Defining your Life Purpose is critical because everything else hinges on it. This is the criterion by which you will judge whether the time you spend in any activity
Here’s a small exercise that may help you to arrive at your Life Purpose. Imagine that today is the last day of your working life. Your colleagues (everyone who ever worked with you) are having a party to felicitate [congratulate] you and several of them who know you intimately having worked closely with you are speaking about how you impacted them, their lives and environment.
What would you like to hear them say? Write all these thoughts down and from it, extract a crisp clear statement that says what you exist in this world to do.
If your Life Purpose statement does not light a fire in your belly, then it is not right for you, no matter how neat it may sound. So please be true to yourself when you do this first and most critical of steps.
Now do a calculation:
Maintenance Time: Sleep, eating, bathing, toilet,
driving, Driving, TV, surfing the net
Total Available Time =
Calculating ‘Effective Time’
This step allows you to take a snap shot of how you spend your time currently so that you can diagnose for yourself any changes that you may need to make
Create a Time Log
Simply think of a normal working [or school] day. Start from the time you woke up and go on to the time you go to sleep. Write down what you were doing
Record what you did every half hour for the whole day
You will find when doing this that there will be times when you can’t recall what exactly you were
Now analyze the times that you can recall doing something specific and see which of these activities were those that help you to achieve your Life Purpose. Add all of those together.
The total number of hours you come up with is called your Effective Time per day.
Finally make a Life Expectancy calculation. For instance, take a work life expectancy of 70 years being the age at which you will probably need to retire. Subtract your present age from this. What is left is the number of years
If not, then
After doing all the calculations above if you believe that perhaps you need to make some changes in how you spend your time, here are 2 tools to maximize your Effective Time.
Tool – 1: Effort Impact Analysis
Look at your Time Log and analyze every activity based on the effort/time it takes and the impact it creates. Write each activity in the quadrant where it belongs. Then take action:
Eliminate all Waste activities.
Delegate the Do If You Have to activities. Or if they can’t be delegated minimize the time spent in doing them.
Maximize the Leverage activities.
Plan and invest in the Hard Work activities especially as they will take more time.
Every day make a list of 3 activities you need to do in order of priority according to impact.
Then start on the 1st and
If any are left over, re-write the list the next day in the same way.
Remember that managing time is about managing yourself. It depends on your
Remember, it is NOT about time at all. It is about LIFE. YOUR LIFE.