As an entrepreneur in a fast-paced business world, this will sound familiar: You spend all your time and energy on your business, but you feel like you’re putting out fires rather than looking at strategy. Time management means addressing day-to-day issues as they arise. You wrote a business plan years ago, and you’re not quite where you hoped you’d be… because running your business got in the way.
That’s modern business life!
At least, it is for many business owners. Through Giant Academy, I’ve coached professionals from just about every business sector and I’ve honed in on time management tips that separate the highly productive from the rest of the pack.
It all begins with prioritizing your personal well-being.
Transform Your Productivity with These Time Management Tips
Tip #1 Go to Sleep
It’s no secret that most American adults do not get enough sleep. Did you know that you should be sleeping seven to nine hours every night? When was the last time that happened? Chances are you can’t even remember what it was like to be fully rested. Gallup reports that over 40% of American adults get less than the recommended amount of sleep each night. And the results can be dramatic: high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke and cognitive impairment. You’re not at your best when you’re not well rested. Don’t let your body and your business suffer. Make time for sleep.
Tip #2 Hit the Gym
As we get busier and busier, we look for things we can cut out of our schedules to make more time. Unfortunately, exercise is often the first thing to go. This is really a shame because exercise ignites a wealth of ideas and creativity. Some of my best ideas have come to me out on the trails, or even when I’m churning away miles on the treadmill. Those endorphins have such a great impact on our brains, our bodies and our productivity. And it’s more than just that. The Mayo Clinic credits regular exercise for better weight control, mood improvement, better sleep and more. Even just 20 minutes of exercise each day will leave you feeling more alert and energized, ready to tackle tough problems and make smart decisions.
Tip #3 Eat Real Food
More protein, less sugar, fewer carbs. That’s not news, but sometimes it’s hard to follow through on this simple advice. Many of us work in offices where donuts and all sorts of baked goodies appear regularly. You’re not going to offend your colleagues if you take a smaller slice of pie. Just remember that the sugar rush and ultimate crash is going to kill your productivity a few hours later. Is it worth it? Most often it isn’t. And if you’re the one who provides the tasty treats, try some of these easy, healthy and office-friendly snacks instead.
Tip #4 Make Time to Play
This is one of the best secrets. Business owners who make time to play reap the benefits many times over. Scheduling business meetings over a bike ride or a round of golf kill two birds with one stone. A productivity home run. Not only are you outside doing something you enjoy, you’re making important connections and decisions while you’re at it. But it’s not all about business. NPR reported that play improves our social well-being. When you take the time to play with your kids and grandkids or enjoy something fun with your spouse or friends you’ll feel your stress melt away. When you’re less stressed, your productivity increases. It’s that simple.
These time management tips are just the tip of the productivity iceberg. Adopting them into your lifestyle will set you on a trajectory for success, but there is so much more to learn.