Part of leveraging your time is managing it. Honestly, I kind of dislike the term “Time Management”. We’re all given the same amount of time, so it’s not really about managing it, it is more about respecting it and ourselves.
A few years ago my mom was visiting with us and I asked her if she wanted to walk down to my favorite little cafe and get a piece of cake and a coffee. “How far is it?” she asked. “Oh, about 15 minutes.” I said.
She was willing, so we set off on a walk that took us about 45 minutes. The truth was I didn’t know how long it was going to take us to walk there, but I guessed 15 minutes. Something she has NEVER let me forget.
Now imagine, if instead of going for dessert, I was going to meet a client. I would have been 30 minutes late.
I believe part of our time issues in our fast pace lives is that we fail to properly estimate how much time it actually takes to accomplish certain tasks.
My daughter’s school is a 5 minute drive here, if I don’t hit any red lights. So let’s say 7 to be safe. That’s 7 to the school and 7 back, now let’s factor in that she’ll need to collect her things or I may chat with a teacher or parent, so let’s give me 7 minutes at the school. Adding that up, you can see it will take me at least 21 minutes to drop her off AND 21 minutes to pick her up. An average of 42 minutes a day to perform a task that is only 5 minutes away.
In this situation, it would be easy to mistake the amount of time it takes to perform it. It’s these little tasks that can eat up the time we need to focus on income producing activities.
As a mom, it’s easy to feel the guilt associated with not “being there”, but the truth is, dropping off and picking up my daughter from school is a task I can easily outsource and find 42 minutes a day. How many phone calls can you make in 42 minutes?
Knowing how long it REALLY takes to do something, will give you the information you need to figure out which tasks you can get off your plate so that you can focus on your business.