On the eleventh installment of Tristan’s Tips, our esteemed guest Tristan Layfield illustrates the concept of time management and offers up a few of his very own methods to help you get more organized and productive.
Tristan: What’s going on, y’all? It’s Tristan of Layfield Resume Consulting, and I’ve teamed up with Living Corporate to bring you all a weekly career tip. Today we’re gonna talk about time management. There are so many things we aren’t taught in school that are necessary to be a functioning part of society, including things like career readiness and personal finance, but there’s one essential skill that is necessary or everything else might crumble, and it’s time management. While there’s no one correct way to manage your time, I figured I’d talk to you about a few things that I’ve tried or currently use to see if you can adopt some of them in hopes that they help. The one thing that has always worked for me is a handy-dandy to-do list. Many people make to-do lists, but quite a few of them do it wrong. They jam their list with tons of things, knowing that they won’t get to them all, and then wonder why they don’t feel accomplished at the end of the day. Always be smart about your to-do lists. I keep a large list of all of the things I have to or want to do, then I use that to make my daily to-do list the night before, prioritizing items as needed. This helps me know what I’ll be focused on on the next day. I also ensure that I look at my calendar to determine how many tasks or how much I can take on. I don’t overdo it, because stuffing your to-do list with things you know you’re not going to do defeats the purpose. Now, the way I’ve created my to-do list has varied over the years. I used to use my Notes app, then I tried what’s called bullet journaling, next I moved to Trello, and now I use the Google Tasks app. It’s clean, it’s simple, and I can see my to-do list and on both my Gmail and Google Calendar. This makes my list readily available no matter what device I’m on. So, you know, really the message here is don’t be afraid to go out and find the tools that help you do what you need to do, and for those of you who are more analog in a digital world, keep that handy pen and paper out and make your list. Don’t try to fit into the mold of what others are doing, especially if you know it doesn’t work for you. Lastly, if you’re having some issues managing your time, there’s a couple things I suggest. First, consider doing an activity log or journal. This is where you keep a record of all the things you do throughout the day and how long you do them for. Not only does it include work tasks, but it also includes things like eating, social media, or even watching TV. This provides an accurate picture of what you do during your day and how you invest your time. Your activity log will help you understand whether or not you’re doing your important work during the right time of day, and it also helps you clearly see how much time you’re spending on things that aren’t getting you towards your goals. So there’s some of my time management hacks. Hopefully they help you get more organized and productive. If you try any of them, please be sure to reach out and let me know how it works for you. This tip was brought to you by Tristan of Layfield Resume Consulting. Check us out on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook @LayfieldResume, or connect with me, Tristan Layfield, on LinkedIn.