Effective time management skills are based on your goals and integrity with yourself. How often do you find yourself going off on tangents, reacting rather than proactively planning, and spending hours on non-productive low value activities? If you’re making these mistakes they are costing you precious time and keeping you from getting results.

You don’t take off on tangents because you just want to waste a lot of time and energy. It happens because you don’t have a clear direction for where you’re going and what you want to accomplish. You may have an idea of what you want, but you haven’t really mapped it out, so to speak, so you know what your next steps should be.

When you’re doing it you don’t realize it, but reacting to other people and circumstances is really a choice to abdicate control. When you respond reactively rather than proactively you aren’t following your plan, your following someone else’s plan. It’s very difficult to get what you want when you don’t have a plan and you allow other people and circumstances to change your plans based on their whims.

It’s actually easier to do the non-productive low value things than it is to do the productive high value things. And that’s exactly why you allow yourself to get side tracked. Holding yourself accountable for productivity is a valuable time management skill that will not only improve your time management, but your results too.

To accomplish your objectives you understand that you have to set goals. Your goals must involve the actual actions you will take. As you accomplish each action and then move immediately to the next action your productivity increases. As your productivity increases the amount of free time you have increases.

But when you don’t hold yourself accountable for actually taking the actions you’re out of integrity with yourself. The more frequently you do this the harder it is to maintain integrity and get things done. Because even while you’re planning to take action your thoughts are on the fact that you didn’t do it when you said you would before, so you probably won’t do it now.

Going off on tangents and automatically reacting happens because you lack focus. You lack focus because you don’t have a clear plan. And because you don’t have a clear plan you don’t know what the right actions are, so you can’t take the right actions.

Poor time management skills lead to a poor time management mindset. You begin to make excuses for yourself or place blame on anyone and everyone but yourself. Develop the mindset of a time efficient, and you’ll become that person as you follow your plan and take the actions you need to take each and every day.

Author's Bio: 

Ready to get unstuck? Time Management Tips.

Ready to achieve Success?