| By Erica Marriaga, MSW, LCSW
Do you ever wish you could make up for lost time to finish that project or read that book that has been sitting on your nightstand for the longest time? Catch up on sleep? Or maybe you long for a busy schedule if you find more time on your hands since the kids went back to school. Are you a College student who cannot seem to adjust to your schedule?
Time is universal, it is easy for us to relate to one another. What is your story with time and life?
According to Psychology Today, “Time management is the ability to plan and control how someone spends the hours in a day to effectively accomplish their goals.”
While Time management does moderately improve our productivity, the real benefit is in the well-being it produces.
Researchers evaluated the findings from 158 studies and papers evaluating time management practices of 50,000 people recorded over the last 30 years and found that 72% percent had greater life satisfaction when they were able to structure and manage their time.
Here are some tips that can help you feel more productive!
- Use a to do list/appointment scheduler: Create a short term list of things needing to be accomplished each day. After you have accomplished them, check them off. This will allow for mood improvement and feelings of accomplishment. This can also help to schedule your day if you have appointments, meetings, etc.
- Prioritize: It is easier to prioritize if you can identify what takes precedence with timeframes. Are there things on your to-do list that might take a bit longer? Is this something that you will feel better about if you accomplish the smaller tasks first?
- Give yourself a break: Whether you reward yourself every 2 hours with a 15 minute break or every hour with a 5 minute break, it is much needed. Do not allow yourself to take longer which can lead to procrastination. Our brains can become overwhelmed and stressed.
- Limit distractions: Social media, Technology, Friends/Family/Colleagues. Yes, they are all outlets that can be helpful at times. However, not if we are noticing a time crunch. Does this mean that you go to the library to get that paper done? Leave your phone in another room? Block your child’s social media accounts during the day?
- Create a conducive environment: What feels good to you? Do you need natural lighting to complete tasks? How about the temperature? You will be more likely to complete necessary items if you are in a comfortable space. Aromatherapy and stress relief scents, such as lavender or eucalyptus are beneficial.
- Find Out Where You are Wasting Time: Do you spend too much time Internet surfing, reading email, Facebook posting, texting, or making personal calls? If you can be more self-aware and use a schedule to track your time, you might be surprised. You might have more or less time on your hands!
If you have noticed that you feel more stressed with little energy to complete daily tasks, a mental health checkin could help. There is no better time to take your first step. Try some of the suggestions above or reach out to our caring staff at Exceptional Wellness Counseling. Our trained professionals can help you find the peace and wholeness you crave.
Erica Marriaga is a proud fur-mama of her one-eyed rescue dog, Toby, and puppy, Tucker. She loves to spend time with her husband and bond with her family, nieces, and nephews. Erica is passionate and enthusiastic about her role as a therapist.
Check out Erica’s professional bio here!
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