How To Spot Time Killers: Top Time Management Help

Posted on November 5, 2008
Filed Under Time Management | 1 Comment

We all know time is valuable but, let’s examine the somewhat strange concept of ‘Time Killers’. There are numerous time killers in this world and what you have to do is identify these time killers, look out for them and stay wary of them. Only then can you put your available time to the maximum possible use.

The killers that I am referring to are quite simple every day things that we see and use in our lives but often do not realize how much of our time they take away.

Seven terrible Time Killers:
Telephone calls
Chatter boxes
Traffic jams
Finding parking spaces
Bad machinery
Long queues

The list could, of course, go on and on. But before we keep adding to the list, I would like to elaborate on certain of the items listed above.

How to handle Time Killers.
Telephone calls.
The funny thing about telephone calls is that these instruments are indeed great time savers. The problem arises when telephones are not used properly. the majority of people do not understand and even if they do they forget that telephones are not to be used for lengthy conversations. A fundamental of a telephone conversation is that it should be short.

Now coming to mobile phones there is a lot to be said and done. Turn off your cell phone when you are having a conversation or a discussion with more than one person. Often we tend to give more importance to the caller than to the person we were having the discussion with. Again the same rule applies here. Be brief. A mobile phone is to be used to get an important message across to a person who you were not able to reach on the land line.

The next point is about those chatter boxes. Steer clear of such people. Believe me, it is much easier to avoid such people than to tell them to shut up and if you get a telephone call from such a person, use a caller ID facility or ask your secretary to divert the call.

Traffic jams and finding parking spaces.
Any one who has lived in the city for at least a day will know what I am talking about. There is no getting past a traffic jam at the rush hour. And will someone tell me why it is called the rush hour when that is the time when the traffic is the slowest and rush hour seems to last two or three hours!
The only thing you can do is anticipate the traffic jam and leave your home a half hour or one hour early. But that does not really keep the time killer at bay. It just helps you to avoid being late. In this respect you have two options. Either you could find something constructive to do while you wait for the traffic to move along or the traffic light to change or a better option would be to take subway and walk the rest of the way. You can get a long a lot faster on your feet and it is a lot better for your health as well.
By doing so, you can also get rid of the headache of finding a parking space.

Not surprisingly lengthy meetings and discussions can prove to be awful time killers particularly if the meeting does not have a clear agenda and if there are people who love to talk among the group. It has been found that most middle and senior level mangers spend nearly 70% of their work time talking. And in most organizations, parleying has been made into a fine art.

Bad machinery is a time waster. How many of us have wanted to sit and scream and bang the daylights out of a pc that does not give us the required data or information. A computer that takes a long time to start up, a photocopier that gives shamefully faint photocopies, even a leaky faucet or a stubborn drawer or door knob can waste a lot of time and send us up the wall. If you have such equipment or machinery, get it changed at the earliest possible date. It is worth the amount of time and energy that you waste on it every day.

Long queues naturally waste a lot of time. That does not mean that you should jump the queue. If you can get the job done over the telephone or can reserve your ticket in advance, do it, even if it means a few extra dollars, it is worth the time you may have to spend waiting.

Apart from these each person may have particular time wasters, like for instance, a car that refuses to start in the morning, difficult hair that insists on looking like Medusas head on a bad snake day, an elevator that takes for ever to reach your floor. Use your common sense and try to find alternate methods or even better, if you cannot find an alternate method, you could put the time to some use like read your morning paper in the elevator.

Other articles
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these articles are filled with practical advice on how to clear clutter. When your home is organized you won’t have to waste time looking for things – they will be in their proper place.

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One Response to “How To Spot Time Killers: Top Time Management Help”

  1. Dan on November 6th, 2008 10:33 am

    If you’d like a tool for managing your time and projects, you can use this application inspired by David Allen’s GTD:

    You can use it to manage and prioritize your goals, projects and tasks, set next actions and contexts, use checklists, schedules and a calendar.
    A mobile version and iCal are available too.

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