Keep Track of Your Time

Despite all of your best efforts at improving your productivity, you still might find yourself not having enough hours in the day to get everything done. Keeping track of how you spend your time could be part of the solution.

Some professionals, like lawyers, routinely do this to track their billable hours. You might want to keep a log as it will show you patterns, including:

Times, when you are unproductive in situations, are sometimes beyond your control. This could be because meetings are scheduled 15 or 20 minutes apart. That’s not enough time to get anything done. In that case, you might want to separate meetings by a half-hour or hour.

Set aside blocks of time when you are working on things that have low value.  This could include filling out reports and doing tasks that add to the bureaucracy rather than high-priority projects. If that’s the case, you might need to look for ways of eliminating some things.

You might also find times that you are wasting that are within your control.  If you are in the office, this could be extended water-cooler chats. If you work from home, it might be one too many cookie breaks.

Finally, you might discover that you can streamline some tasks that are taking too long.

You can track your time with one of many online apps or by keeping a paper log. Start tracking when you begin working on something. Make a note of what you are doing and then end the task or start a new one. Also, note downtime and “lost time.”.  Anything that takes ten minutes or more should be logged. Don’t cheat. Your boss won’t see this. At the end of the day, or week, tabulate the time by category.

Once you review your summary, it should become apparent if there is anything you can change to be more productive.

Your ability to be productive requires you to pay attention to how you use your time. Learn more HERE.

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