Have you ever thought about how people are created equal? Did you know that there is one way and one way only that we are all exactly the same? That way is time. It doesn’t matter how much money you have, or what school you went to, or where you were raised… you only get 24 hours in a day. That’s 86,400 seconds in each 24 hour period.
The way to be most efficient and effective with your time and get the most out of your 24 hours is to follow these 5 simple steps.
1. Write- Everything you need or want to get done in a day, write it down. You don’t have to overcomplicate this one. Just get a simple legal pad of paper and write Things To Do Monday at the top. Then start your list. I do things to the ridiculous. 1. Wake up at 6am. 2. Go to gym by 6:30. 3. Email Mike regarding marketing. 4 Call Mary about business cards. 5. Pick up dry cleaning. 6. Drop off bracelet at jeweler. 7. Buy stamps…etc. If you simply write down what needs to be done you will free up your mind and instantly be more focused and get more done.

2. Eliminate distractions- Distractions or interruptions are the primary cause for people to not be efficient and get what needs to be done, done. Here you have two options. Option A- remove the distractor. If it’s the phone, turn it off. If it’s email, don’t even log into your account until your project is complete. If it’s television, don’t turn it on. Option B. Remove yourself from the distractor. If you work in an office where others are constantly being a distraction or interruptive, then you need to not be in that environment. If possible work from home to complete a project. Go to an available conference room or empty office and close the door. If you are in a cubicle put up a sign that reads, Do NOT Disturb or Quiet time from 9-noon, no interruptions please.

3. Stay in the moment- Many times people do not use the present moment effectively because they are projecting in the future or dwelling on the past. The future is not here yet, so it is most efficient and effective to get the most you can out of this moment, right now. By writing a things to do list you will be eliminating, or a least reducing stress and random thoughts. You will be more organized, together and know what you need to do and when you need to do it by. If you are dwelling on the past, with all do respect you need to get over it and move on. Here’s the thing, no matter how much you ponder and percolate on something that has already happened , it isn’t going to change what happened. It is what it is. Think about where you are now and what you can do in this present moment to make the best of any situation.

4. Set an alarm- If you need to get something done in a specific amount of time or if you need to dedicate minutes, hours, etc to a project to complete it by the deadline, set an alarm. Use one on your computer, watch, cell phone, egg timer, or an actually alarm clock. Until that alarm sounds, you stay focused and only work on that one project. Allotting a specific amount of time will enable you to concentrate on just the matter at hand without concerning yourself with the clock or other things around you.

5. Have a reward- Nothing is better than having a little incentive when you are learning a new habit. The next time you are struggling with managing your time, give your self a reward. Say when I have my entire things to do list complete every day for one week, I will give myself blank, as a treat. Now you have a reason to stay focused, avoid distractions and get what needs done, done.

Those are the five basic steps for Time Management. What are you waiting for??? Get to writing your things to do list today!

For more information, visit our website www.sharmenlane.com

Author's Bio: 

Sharmen Lane is an Author, speaker, radio host, and life coach. She has trained, managed, and coached thousands of individuals on what it takes to get what they want. She currently has several seminars, The 7 Secrets to Success, Success Made simple (easy as ABC), the 3 C’s To Success, to name a few. She was interviewed on "America's Leadership Tribute" show produced by NPR that was broadcast on all American Airlines and US Airways flights worldwide. Sharmen has her own live internet radio program “Success Made Simple” on VoiceAmerica.com and recently signed a one year contract to continue the show through July 2008. She wrote the book titled “The 7 Secrets to Create Your Fate”, which is a personal growth, self development book written to give everyone who reads it the motivation, inspiration and determination to go after what they want with passion. It is made up of her own life experiences or those she has interviewed or coached. She has personally gone from being a manicurist to millionaire and she did it by using all the principles described in her book.