There is nothing I love more than a new gadget. I love smartphones, computers pretty much any kind of tech. I admit, however, that I have to have a cheat sheet to make the television work on anything other than “television” setting. If I want to watch a DVD I need instructions. Why don’t my tech skills translate to television? No idea. Back to my gadgets and my love of them, though. Even with my love and use of gadgets for almost everything in my everyday life. I use my gadgets to track my fitness, to set alarms for when I am cooking dinner, for when to check email and poke around on Facebook. I use my Google calendar for everything. I use my phone as my go-to gadget for task reminders, to-dos and timers. I am oh so effective, right? Maybe. But again, maybe not.
It was a rude awakening the day I realized that my to-do list had its own to-do list. What?! I knew at that point I needed to make some changes. Here are some truths I found out about “time savers.” Ask yourself: are your time savers time wasters?
- Being “active” doesn’t mean I was productive. Starting and stopping projects, adding to my To-do list and having stacks of projects organized by urgency didn’t always equate to getting it done. Just because I completed 10 of my 15 items on my list doesn’t mean I completed them at 100% of my capacity. ACTION STEP: Concentrate on a few tasks and work on them to completion. It’s better to do something 100% than to do it 30% and have to chisel away at it until it’s finally done. One caveat to that is that if you have a really difficult project you’re working on it might be best to nibble away at it little by little until it’s done.
- I had to cut back on gadget dependence. Constantly checking my phone for a blinking light that indicates I have an email, text, Facebook mention or phone message can be exhausting. Also, checking the gadget light makes me a slave to the gadget and distracted me from the work at hand. ACTION STEP: Plan times throughout the day to get on your social media pages, check email and check your phone alerts.
- Keep a central To-do list. I sit down at the beginning of every week and write down an overview of what I have to accomplish and for whom. I then parcel out the items with hard deadlines first then fill in the rest of the to-dos throughout the week. I write them in a notebook on my desk. Why? Because I like seeing them there and the physical act of crossing off tasks that are complete make me feel accomplished. ACTION STEP: Take time to list everything you need to accomplish next week, write daily to-dos that encompass those tasks. Make note of “phantom” items as well such as : check email, interact on social media, complete my own personal blogging, take the dog to the groomer, get exercise and family time.
What time saving tips or time wasting habits do you care to share? We’d love to know! Share them in the comments below!