Essential Skills for Mastering Time Management

Lauana Samilenko | Training Coordinator, Leap Systems


We all in some fashion attempt to juggle various domains of life – work, home, social life, and on rare occasion, hobbies. 2020 has certainly thrown us a few curve balls that have impacted our previous time management efforts and catapulted us into an onset of new realities such as virtual work environments, virtual learning for our children and for me, both. Your former daily routine was familiar, predictable, you had a fairly good grasp on managing your day-to-day, and now, it’s changed in some form. How do we make this new normal work?

Anyone who knows me knows that I methodically plan and organize my work, home and kids calendars down to the minute and sometimes months in advance. I started by making small changes to help manage and organize how I used my time. I’ve been asked, “What’s the secret? How do you do it?” I’ve simply learned to manage my time, instead of allowing time to manage me.

Here are a few simple and practical skills that have been key to my time management success.

  1. Use Sundays to plan for the week ahead Review your schedule and prepare accordingly to eliminate surprises

  2. Schedule all of your tasks or projects into your calendar and set reminders This will hold you accountable and will keep you organized with deadlines

  3. Leave 15 to 30 minutes between meetings and/or errands It gives you time to decompress and prepare for the next meeting

  4. Prioritize tasks by urgency and importance Prioritizing also means saying NO more often to things that might cause distraction

  5. Don’t multitask Multitasking isn’t productive and typically leads to mistakes and oversights

  6. Implement the 2-Minute Rule If it takes less than two minutes to complete, do it immediately.

  7. Take breaks to refresh your mind Breaks increase productivity

Any changes made to your daily life require practice, and time management is no different. Whether you’ve developed your own time management process or plan to incorporate a combination of items I’ve listed, creating a sustainable process and practicing your process will reinforce the daily changes and will help you be more successful.

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