Gain more freedom with modern time management methods

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Gain more freedom with modern time management methods

In your daily work routine, you hardly find the necessary peace to concentrate on the important tasks. This gives you the feeling that you are making poor use of the time you have. Another day has passed without you having made any progress with the new project. Maybe you'll get it done tomorrow? No, the procrastination is over now.

A coaching for Time Management puts you on the right track. Here you will learn the different time management methods. It's all about priorities, smooth processes and good structuring. A certain discipline is also necessary. This way you can complete the tasks at hand without rushing and constantly looking at the clock.

The advantages of time management methods

At the end of the day, the work is far from done - you just don't have the time to complete all the tasks. The project has to be finished urgently: You're already sitting up late into the night working on it. It's clear that time management is a problem here. But with sophisticated time management methods you can manage the hours better. This is not only important for self-employed entrepreneurs and bosses, but also for employees.

If you take a structured approach, you'll see where it's best to start. The proven and new time management methods show how this works. The Advantages are clearly visible:

  • the better overview of the tasks still to be done,
  • a clear prioritisation,
  • important points remain in the memory,
  • enough time for the urgent,
  • Freedom for creative approaches,
  • Personality development,
  • Achieving professional and personal goals,
  • Stress Reduction,
  • more free time.

Those who manage their working hours cleverly are more productive and have more free time. So it's worth investing a certain amount of time in the subject. With the time management methods that are suitable for your situation, you no longer waste time and can enjoy the end of the day better. When you have written down all the tasks - possibly as a to-do list for tomorrow - you have the Head free.

methods time management

Find the best time management method

Which of the time management methods is suitable for you depends on several factors. In addition to the individual way of working and the environment, the hierarchy in the company plays a relevant role. Ideally, you have decision-making power and can determine yourself which methods you want to use in the company.

The Pareto Method

Little work input to achieve a high value - that's how the Pareto principle off. With this method, you do 20 percent of the work to create 80 percent of the result. What do you need you to achieve the goal? Which individual tasks are less important? By setting priorities, you protect yourself from unnecessary detail work. This way you can concentrate on the essentials.

However, the division of tasks into 20 and 80 % is not always possible. Therefore, the Pareto method is only suitable for items that run separately. Basically, the point is that you can get a lot of the work done with little effort. But dependencies in the company, Teamwork and other conditions influence the result.

The Eisenhower Principle

The Eisenhower matrix is used to determine priorities. How important and urgent is an individual task? There are four fields for categorization. The first field takes the tasks that are absolutely important and cannot be postponed - you do these first. Field B contains the urgent things with less relevance, field C is for important but less urgent things and D tasks can be completely deleted or delegate.
The Eisenhower principle gives you a good overview of the tasks that need to be done. After the classification into the respective category, you work through them one by one, first those with priority A, later the others. You delegate the projects in fields C and D. With this classification, the Eisenhower Matrix is especially suitable for people who work at the management level: They can easily pass on certain tasks to others.

The Pomodoro Method

In the office, the Pomodoro technique is a popular method. It consistently tackles time-wasters like emails and other typical interruptions. It is important that you remain consistent during the work phases and do not allow yourself to be distracted. First, make several small subtasks out of a larger task and write everything down carefully. Work through these elements one after the other in 25-minute units according to the Pomodoro principle. It is best to set an alarm clock. When it rings after 25 minutes, take a 5-minute break.

This is followed by the next "Pomodoro". When you have completed four rounds, take a 30-minute break. After completing a section, cross out the task on your notepad. This is important for the feeling of achievement, for the thought: I have now done that.

A Pomodoro session with four time units alternates between focused work phases and relaxing breaks. This is good for concentration. As you get used to this alternation, your work efficiency increases without having to give up breaks.

The ABC method

In the ABC method, you set priorities. The basis is a division into three areas: A is very important, B is important and C is less important. The A tasks you normally do yourself and calculate about 60 % of your working time for them. The B tasks can possibly be delegated. If you do them yourself, they should take a maximum of 25 % of your working time. The C-tasks are often time-consuming. They should take a maximum of 3/4 of an hour a day. The ABC model belongs to the simple time management methods. In practical use, it makes sense to plan a certain time buffer: then surprises won't throw you off track right away.

The ALPEN method

The ALPEN method is a great way to organize your workday. This method consists of five steps:

  • Define tasks.
  • Estimate length for timing purposes.
  • Allow buffer time to be prepared for unforeseen things.
  • Making decisions regarding priorities and time planning (useful in combination with other time management methods such as Eisenhower or ABC matrix).
  • Follow-up to check the process and the objectives achieved.

When planning your schedule, it is important to remain realistic. Otherwise, individual tasks may be postponed. In order to make rapid progress in defining and assessing priorities, it is possible to use the ALPEN method connect with the Eisenhower Matrix. Detailed planning according to the ALPEN system is not necessary or useful in every profession. Especially when you work in a team and have to follow other colleagues, this strategy is difficult to implement.

The SMART Method

With the SMART method you set concrete and realistic goals, always taking into account the deadline. A good goal meets five criteria: It is

  • specific,
  • measurable,
  • attractive, (alternatively: action-oriented or accepted)
  • realistic and
  • scheduled.

Particularly suitable is the SMART Method for a focused goal. Example: You have a specific project ahead of you or are planning to run a marathon. With intermediate goals you get closer to the future, big goal. The SMART method is also helpful if you are planning a long-term change, for example, if you are aiming for a new routine. It reduces the danger that you fall into blind actionism or waste your energy. Instead, you keep your eye on the important goal and don't get distracted.

Getting Things Done

With the Getting Things Done system you combine professional duties and appointments with your private life. It is based on writing down all work steps or tasks. This relieves your brain and you are sure not to forget anything. This method consists of five individual steps:

  • Collect,
  • Process,
  • Organization,
  • Perusal,
  • Done.

If a task takes longer than two minutes, it goes on a list, such as "waiting for," "next steps," or a specific project. At least once a day, check your lists and decide what's next.

The 10-10-10 method

This time management method helps you to make decisions. What are the consequences of a certain decision in ten minutes? In ten months? In ten years? By asking yourself these questions, you'll discover what's important. The 10-10-10 Method also brings you to a new, detached point of view.
The simple 10-10-10 method is less about time management and more about sorting your thoughts. You create order and keep the possible consequences in mind. Short-term consequences are, for example, an angry boss or amused colleagues. In 10 months, it'll be a different story if you complained in a meeting or pushed through a vacation. In 10 years everything might be forgotten, but maybe not ...

Time Boxing

At Time Boxing you set fixed time blocks in which you complete the tasks. This method assumes that most work can be done within a fixed time frame. The self-imposed pressure drives you on. However, you must not be too demanding and should estimate the time units realistically.

The 60-60-30 method

At the Model 60-60-30 is a work rhythm that alternates between focused tension and relaxation. 55 minutes of work, 5 minutes break - that's the first 60 minutes. Here it is important to really use the five-minute break as relaxation: Get up, have a drink, get away from the workstation. This is followed by a repeat of this work session. The following 30 indicates a longer break.
Time management methods like these help you structure your work time and avoid stress. With the 60-60-30 method you loosen up the office routine, and it's also perfect for the home office.

Time Flow Analysis

This analysis is not one of the classic time management methods, because it is primarily intended to expose the time eaters. For this you have to observe yourself for a while. A time diary is indispensable. In a notebook, in a calendar or with a digital time tracking tool - it's up to you how you record your working time.
At the Time Flow Analysis you not only record the pure working time. You also record all the other things you do during the working day. Phone calls, online research, private emails, a break - you note all of that. Later, you can read from your notes when you were concentrated on your work. The less productive times are also easy to identify. Most people are particularly motivated and concentrated in the morning. In the afternoon the performance often decreases. If you know this, you can plan your tasks realistically and lower the stress level.

Eat the Frog

Don't hesitate for long: close your eyes and get through it. It's best to get the unpleasant things over with quickly. That way you'll have achieved a first success and can devote yourself to the things you enjoy more. If you put off the frog task for too long, it may become a monster that you shy away from more and more. So get over yourself and get on with the job: someone has to do it. Afterwards, you'll feel free of the pressure. The unloved task is especially easy if you do it first thing in the morning. That's when your motivation is usually at its highest and you're correspondingly productive.

time management techniques

Conclusion and tips on time management methods

Which time management methods suit you and your everyday work well? That depends on various points. Desk workers who work alone do well with time management according to the Pomodoro principle or the 60-60-30 method. The structuring of the working day can be combined well with a prioritisation system, for example with the Eisenhower or ABC method.

Don't be irritated if time management means an increased effort in the beginning. The bottom line is that time management methods help you get the job done easier and faster. They keep the typical time thieves away and improve your concentration. This also increases your motivation.
By prioritizing and putting in the hours, you'll get a good overview.

For time management to work, however, you need a certain discipline and confidence. Because only by delegating less important tasks will you have more free space.
Document your activities and try out the time management methods that will help you for your Self-organization seem suitable. This way you can see which variant will make your everyday work easier.

With the 10 Business Coaching Tips from Greator you develop your time and self-management and improve your chances. Good time management also ensures a good work-life balance: this makes you strong for everyday life.

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Reviewed by Dr. med. Stefan Frädrich

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