Recently I came across Brian Tracy’s blog while researching time management for clients and how one can save time and money by hiring a Virtual Assistant. Brian Tracy, an author of multiple books on time management and personal productivity, is a firm believer in “delegate to others.” Brian stated that one of the greatest time management tools is for you to get someone else to do the task. Your ability to delegate lower-value tasks to others (such as a Virtual Assistant!) is one of the vital skills of modern management. Delegate everything you possibly can to others who can do the tasks as well as or better than you, so that you can focus on the income-generating aspects of your business.
Recommended by Bizy Biz Virtual Assistant as Book of the Month: Brian Tracy’s new book was released on January 20, 2014, and is titled “Time Management (The Brian Tracy Success Library).” Pick up your Kindle Edition through Amazon for only $3.79.
Time management skills are essential for anyone who wants to breed success.
How you manage your time will determine how fast you will succeed in your endeavor. After reading Brian Tracy’s blog, the following are my favorite time management tips, and I think you’ll find them useful too.
1. If you have two frogs, eat the ugliest one first.
Eating a frog is analogous of doing your most important tasks as the first thing when you wake up. Brian Tracy got it from the saying: “If the first thing you do each morning is to eat a live frog, you can go through the day with the satisfaction of knowing that is probably the worst thing that is going to happen to you all day long!” By doing your most important task first you will less likely procrastinate on the other tasks later in the day and will set the tone for the rest of the day for getting work done.
2. One of the most important rules of personal effectiveness is the 10/90 rule.
The first 10% of time that you spend planning and organizing your work before you begin will save you as much as 90% of the time spent in getting the job done once you get started. This is not to be confused with the 80/20 rule which is about determining your most valuable tasks. The 10/90 rule is about planning when and how you do your work. Not having a game plan for how you are going to tackle the tasks at hand, or when you will do them, will make you more likely to procrastinate. Whenever you start a new task or project, think about the 10/90 rule. Plan first, and then start.
3. Do more important things
You may think you should do the easy ones first, that way you can cross it off your list and focus on the important tasks the rest of the day. Nope!
The best time management tip is to use the 80/20 rule; 20% of what you do accounts for 80% of your results. If you have a list of ten things to do, two of those items will be worth more than all the others put together. Discipline yourself to work on those items that are most important first. The goal is to choose the tasks that will produce 5 to 10 times more results then the average task.
4. The fact is that you can’t do everything that you have to do. You have to procrastinate on something. Therefore, procrastinate on small tasks.
Let’s be realistic here – everyone procrastinates. If you have to do it, you might as well procrastinate on things that aren’t so important. It’s a good idea to make a separate list of tasks that are not important but have to get done at some point. For example, organizing your digital files could be delegated to your Virtual Assistant. Cleaning out your file cabinet in preparation for 2014 may not be most important, but it has to get done at some point. Whenever you feel like procrastinating, look over this list and see what you can knock off without much effort. You still get work done even when you feel like you are procrastinating.
5. Visualize your time management skills
This technique is one that I’ve used whenever I start a new project or even when I am going to do an activity that I haven’t done in while, like snow skiing!
You can use visualization to program your subconscious mind. Mental pictures most immediately influence your subconscious mind. In self-image psychology, the person you see is the person you will be through positive affirmation. Begin to see yourself as well organized, efficient and effective in time management. Recall and recreate memories and pictures of yourself when you were performing at your best.
Think of a time when you were working efficiently and effectively, and getting through an enormous amount of work. Replay this in your mind the night before, and you will wake up fresh and ready to start your project.
6. There is never enough time to do everything, but there is always enough time to do the most important thing.
Today we are overwhelmed with information and things we need to do. You often hear people say “I wish I had more time” when they feel overwhelmed. If that task is really important, you will get creative and find time for it, or delegate to someone else, such as a Virtual Assistant. Sure, you might really have too many things to do but that is not the core problem. Instead, you want to ask yourself “what is the most valuable use of my time, right now?” and work on that right away. Anything else in comparison is relatively unimportant.
7. The purpose of time management and getting more done in less time is to enable you to spend more face time with the people you care about and doing the things that give you the greatest amount of joy in life.
The three biggest factors for determining your happiness are your health, wealth and relationships. With the right time management skills, you can feel happier, by freeing up your time and enabling yourself to actively spend time doing things that make you happy. Relationships with friends, family and your significant other are important for feeling and being happy, so make sure you spend time with them.