Time Management Tips for Entrepreneurs – How to Boost Your Personal Productivity

One of the most common challenges that people face, especially entrepreneurs, is to effectively manage their time. In this information age, there is too much information to sift through and if you let the information control you then you will feel overwhelmed and under-achieve. So what does one have to do to improve their personal productivity? Several ideas have been proposed and here I would like to summarize all the points into 4 main points. So let’s get started.

Point #1: Break free from the Time Management myth: You have to first change your mindset and point of view to understand and acknowledge the fact that Time cannot be managed. Time is time and is a constant. What you have to focus on, instead, is how to manage YOURSELF in time. Stephen Covey once said, “Time Management is a misnomer. The key is to manage yourself.” So from the here on, the focus will be on how YOU can take charge of your time.

Point #2: Tackle Overwhelm effectively: In this age you have too much information coming at you, and one keeps jumping from one topic to the other leading to overwhelm and waste of time. We always move in the direction we look. So if you want to change your direction, then just change where you look. And one keeps looking at different things throughout the day, and guess what they end up moving everywhere – and that means nowhere. So how do you tackle it? Let’s start with you – Don’t complain about too much information. The way you look at it determines how you would react to it. You CANNOT AVOID overwhelm, but you CAN MANAGE it. And this is how you do it:

1. You must form the habit of scheduling everything that needs to be done: You cannot just react to new information. Be a student and not a follower. Your day should have a pattern and everything that needs to be done should be given an appointment. If the newspaper wants you to read it, then you should give the newspaper a specific time to engage you. Your time is important, so everything that takes away your time should be scheduled.

2. Disconnect yourself regularly: Take regular time-offs from your daily grind. Find ways of relaxation and refresh yourself with new ideas and thoughts. Engage in your hobbies regularly. If you like fishing, schedule it every week. It’s said that the most creative ideas come to you when your mind is relaxed. So when once you are back at your work, you are keyed up and raring to go.

Point #3: Avoid the #1 killer of time – Distractions: It’s not social media, emails, etc that causes you distractions; it’s YOU. You are the one who let’s them distract you. You cannot do things when you feel like doing it; you have to schedule it. You have to build a boundary of protection around you. The best solution, what I have experienced, to tackle distractions is to get the most important things done before distraction comes looking for you. That means that most of the distractions start after people have started waking up and getting to work. Roughly after 1000 am things start to take on the colors of distraction. So the best thing to do is to schedule all your important activities early in the morning. By doing this, you ensure consistent productivity. It’s said that great poet Ernest Hemmingway used to finish off all his writing before 1000 am. After that, he used to enjoy life. Use that principle.

Point #4: Choose your environment: My experience shows that I can’t get everything done in front of my work-desk. I also don’t like to exercise in the house. I tend to do better outdoors, sucking in the fresh morning air. What environment you choose is entirely up to you. It helps to assign specific environments to specific activities.

To summarize, if you take a look at the above 4 points, you will see a common pattern – it’s about YOU. It starts with you and ends with you. You have the total power and control to manage yourself and boost your productivity. Try the above techniques for a week, and see how you adapt to it.

All the best and God Bless.