Being an entrepreneur is all about getting as much done as humanly possible, especially if you’re still a “One Man Band” trying to do everything by yourself before the business is ready to support employees. For the eager and ambitious, you know that the key to achieving more is to do more, but where do you find the time? Assuming 8 hours for sleep, there are 16 hours in a day to run your business, balance your finances, provide customer service, run errands, maintain your relationships and finish your household chores before another necessary sleep cycle. Instead of stressing out about what you miss or letting your personal life slip in favor of other demands, here are 5 great tips for becoming a smoother, more time efficient you.
1: Get Energized
You are not the sitcom character who wakes up grumpy, needs coffee, and hates going to work. You are an energetic, motivated entrepreneur eager to achieve bigger and better goals every day. From the moment your feet hit the floor, remember that you are a supreme badass who can handle everything life dishes up. This positive attitude will give you the right forward momentum to take on your daily goals and enjoy crossing each item off your agenda as you achieve it. The coffee helps, of course, but you don’t need it to love your job and enjoy your day.
2: Plan Like with Like
You can maximize efficiency by planning to take care of similar tasks together rather than losing time on two separate trips or efforts. If, for instance, you need to pick up groceries and stop by the bank, plan to do them together and pick venue locations that are near each other to save time needlessly driving across town. Everything can be done more efficiently from making a week’s worth of healthy lunches on Monday to writing emails while you wait for an important phone call because you’re already stopped for a moment at your desk. Using a practical grouping approach with everything will save little slices of time throughout your schedule.
3: Set Alerts
Don’t be afraid to use technology to help you out. There are many disorganized entrepreneurs but your business can be perfectly tidy with the assistance of scheduling software and automatic alerts. The selection of applications on your smartphone alone are more than enough to keep a determined person organized. However, if you’ve struggled with complex organizer apps with little improvement in your personal efficiency, the solution might be to go simpler instead. From post-it notes to email alerts, integrate your digital reminders in ways that work with your day and don’t take too much time to manage.
4: Time Yourself
You may not realize how much time you spend on each task. Instead of just trying to get faster and stressing out when you don’t, motivate yourself and prove that you’re speeding up by constantly timing your activities. Start with no-pressure baselines. Keep a stopwatch program open and practice starting and stopping it as you begin and end activities. You will start to get an idea of how long you typically take on timed tasks and then can work to beat your times and become probably faster. Soon, you’ll be working comfortably in double-time and can earn yourself several minutes a day of time saved via simple efficiency.
5: Keep Score
Nothing motivates like beating your own high score. If you really want to become more time efficient, keep a score as if efficiency were a game. Assign points to complete work tasks, errands, chores, and even personal hobbies. Give yourself a bonus point for every activity you did faster than the day before and try to beat your daily or weekly scores. Just remember to be a fair score-keeper for yourself or results will inevitably skew.
The key to super-efficient time management is a constant energetic effort. If you want to be a more efficient business owner and constantly challenge yourself to do so, you will get faster. Time management is all about saving every second. By moving quickly, not daydreaming, and getting a little faster each day you will quickly find yourself achieving 7 or more impossible things before breakfast.