The Importance of Time Management

The importance of time management is more than to-do lists and personal organizers. The benefits of time management extends to your personal life, career success, and achieving goals. It is hard to overestimate the importance of time.

With 24 hours a day, time is a scarce and finite resource. We all know this!

We've heard and probably said ourselves to "make the best of each day" or "live each day as though it was your last". These affirmations highlight the importance of time management - but usually they are not enough.

What is the importance of time management?

Imagine if you were given $86,400 each morning. You are required to spend this money. You cannot save it for a rainy day or invest it for your future. The money that you have today you have to spend today!

How would you spend it?

This happens each day with a more valuable resource - your time. Each day you have 86,400 seconds which you have to use. You can't invest it or save time up. Each day gives you the same amount of time.

While you can save and invest money, time is a resource that can't be replenished - once time has passed it is gone for ever. This raises the importance of managing your time - from to-do lists and personal organizers to your personal effectiveness and the way that you want to your life.

Having the right time management strategies is critical for the choices that you need to make.

As a time management coach I often ask people "what is time management about?" The most common response that it s about planners, techniques or time management tools.

But these are the techniques to self (or life) management. Time management is really about self management. How you manage yourself in relation to time.

The choice that you take in using your time determines your effectiveness - wasting time can lead to a wasted job or even a lack of purpose and meaning in our lives.

As Benjamin Franklin observed:

"Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time - for it is the stuff life is made out of"

Here I describe some of the benefits of time management.

Characteristics of Poor and Good Time Management

Symptoms of Poor Time Management

Often missing deadlines and feeling stressed

Regularly working long hours

Feeling pressured by a lack of time or too many things to do

Lack of purpose or direction

Jumping from crises to crises

Symptoms of Good Time Management

Meet deadlines and review quality of work

Achieving work life balance

Lower stress and feeling more control

Striving toward meaningful goals

Spending quality time on important tasks

The foundation of good time management starts with personal goal setting and developing your priorities. How can you make a decision on what to spend your time on if there is not a clear vision of where you want to go? I find the Pareto principle the best way to identify priorities.

By prioritizing what is most important to you, time management allows you to spend quality time doing important things that add value to your life.

If you liked this article on the importance of time management then you will also like this article on what is time management.

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