Time Management Basics, part 1 | Claire Tompkins | Skillshare
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10 Lessons (45m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Why time management is important

    • 3. Set the stage with these tips

    • 4. Manage the time you have left

    • 5. Calendars

    • 6. Project lists and to do lists

    • 7. Prioritizing

    • 8. Distractions

    • 9. Accountability

    • 10. Wrap up

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About This Class

This class is about time management. It’s not about the best app. I’m not against apps, but you need to know the basics of managing your time in order to use them well. And there’s no sense in managing your time well if your doing it for the wrong reasons, or don’t know why you’re doing it.

This is the time of your life. Strive to spend it in ways that feel valuable and meaningful to you.

The core of this class is five time management topics: calendars, project lists and to do lists, prioritizing, distractions and accountability. At the end of each section, I'll give you a project to do to enhance the learning.

As with building any new habit, it's best to start small, so you don't have to do all the projects. I want to offer you all this information so you can choose what will be most helpful to you. 

Meet Your Teacher

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Claire Tompkins

Professional organizer and clutter coach


Claire helps creative, busy and/or overwhelmed folks get organized at home and at work. She uses her ten+ years of experience, along with copious reading and study, to discover the best and easiest organizing techniques for each client. There's no one size fits all  answer.

Claire specializes in out-of-the-box thinking and loves it when her clients have those "ah ha!" moments. So often, the best solution is the simplest one. After all, very few of us really enjoy organizing! The right technique for you is the one you will actually use everyday.

Services include in-person sessions, telephone and email coaching for getting organized, decluttering, time management and maintaining your system. Claire writes a blog, sends a free semi-monthly ezine, and hosts a podcast call... See full profile

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1. Introduction: let me start by saying no one has enough time and they never will. We all have the same amount. However, you can definitely manage your small amount of time a lot better than you do now. And that's what this class is all about. I've got a lot of information for you, so this class comes in two parts. This is part one. Part two is a bit more detail, but feel free to start with that one. If you like. I'm clear. Tompkins Productivity Coach in Professional organizer In this class, I'll first talk about knowing where your time is going now that's tracking your time so you can make more informed decisions about what you need to change and develop your awareness. So your time is Maura under your control. I'll talk about five basic strategies to manage time and how to fit them into your life. This is where you select a project to work on. Its strategy is important but can take time to make part of your life. I suggest choosing just one to start with which one, either The one that seems like it will create the fastest positive change in your life. or the one that seems easiest. It's not cheating to start with the easy one. You can come back to this class later to try a new strategy if you want. 2. Why time management is important: But first, why should you manage your time? Well, you can't get more of it. That's the main reason we all get the same amount. And once it's gone, it can't be retrieved. On the other hand, our perception of time convey vary considerably. Here's a quotation attributed to Albert Einstein. Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour and it seems like a minute. He was trying to explain relativity, but we've all had similar experiences. When you're doing something you enjoy, time passes quickly when you're not, it doesn't. As Nobel Prize winning psychologists, Daniel Kahneman said, time use, maybe the determinant of well being, this most susceptible to improvement. So we want to look for ways to turn it around, to make it positive, to make time work for us instead of working against time. Since we can't really manage it, we need to work on what we do have control over ourselves. The good news is time. An efficient really is self management. We also want to be intentional about our use of time. Again, we don't have much and we can't get more whether you're spending time writing the great American novel or chatting on Instagram, you want to look back on your time spent and feel good about it. That means being mindful of your choices during the class. I'll ask you to give it a thumbs up if you like it. That boosts popularity and helps others find it more easily. I'll also request that you review the class for the same reason. I can't reply to reviews, but I really appreciate the time students take two right thumb. I'll definitely be reading your comments and look forward to commenting on your projects. Okay, let's get started. 3. Set the stage with these tips: Now we'll talk about time tracking. First. We need some data to work with. Where does your time go now? This is often where I start with my clients. They raced through a day, but they can't accurately recount what they actually did. I don't mean how many hours you were at your desk. What I mean is, what exactly are you doing at any given moment during the day, I said, Just doing your own time and motion study on yourself. Also, count the times you get distracted and how it happens that will come in handy later. This is especially important when you find that the day goes by quickly. This can mean that you're in the flow of your important work and enjoying it. That's the best case scenario, but it usually means you're going from one urgent task to the next, most of which may truly be urgent but are not in the long run, actually important. This is when your flitting from one thing to the next without taking time to stop and make sure you're doing the important things, the right things. You can track your time by setting an alarm to go off every 15 to 30 minutes on your computer or your phone or your watch. Make brief notes about what you've done since the last alarm. This is just for your information gathering, not to judge you on how much time you're wasting. If you're in denial about how much time how you spend your time, it won't be possible to change your habits. People are often pretty inaccurate in estimating how long things take in both directions. Too little time or too much time. If a task is boring and tedious, you'll often estimate that it takes longer than it does, and you'll be inclined to put it off until you have enough time. If a task is simple, in short, you'll often estimate it takes for a little time. Oddly, people put off of those tasks to thinking that's something they can do in a few minutes can be done any time. Yes, it's true, But when does this any time Come around. You still have to make time for tasks, even short ones. Now we'll analyze In this phase. You're gonna look at your time tracking notes and categorize them. The categories are stuff I needed to do stuff. I just felt like doing stuff that took way longer than it should have. Taking a break, procrastinating and stuff. That's a waste of time when I stopped to think about it. Another way to categories categorizes to use the Eisenhower Matrix that was popularized by Steven Covey. Here's the Matrix quadrant. One is urgent and important tasks. Quadrant two is not urgent but important tasks. Quadrant three is urgent, but not important. Tasks in Quadrant four is not urgent and not important tasks. That's the one you really want to minimize. This analysis will get you to start thinking about the things that fall into Quadrant two. That's the important one, those air projects and tasks that important to you but have no real deadlines or accountability. So they tend to get shunted to the end of the list ahead of things that seem urgent. But really aren't I'll talk about those issues in the next section. Here's an important skill to master. Learn to say no, your time is your time. I am hereby giving you permission to use it. You're away. That could be not being afraid of missing out or disappointed people when you don't do what they want you to or when you think you just should. It could mean stopping doing things that you're not, so that you're not busy all the time, which could be uncomfortable. For some people, it could mean letting go of perfectionism and delegating some task to others, even if they don't do them as well as you do because it gives you time for those important things. It could mean setting in honoring boundaries with others, even when that makes you feel selfish, become aware of feeling resentful. That could be a clue that you feel unappreciated or taken advantage of because you're following someone else's agenda. Stop over doing Let go of perfectionism. Set an honor boundaries. Beware of resentment. Make time. There is no such thing as free time. By this, I mean the free time you imagine you'll do all those undone tasks in People impressively overestimate how much time they'll have in the future to do something that goes triple for the important but not urgent tasks that you truly want to do. Look back at your time tracking notes. You'll probably see that there were times you weren't doing anything very important yet you also didn't stop to allocate that time to goofing off. Your time got spent mostly unconsciously. Making time requires you to be mindful about where you spend it. 4. Manage the time you have left: man is the time you have left in this section a list of five basic skills that are the heart of this class. In the following section, I'll go into one in more depth, show you how to master it and how to integrate it into your life. This is where you'll choose a project to work on. The categories are calendars to do list and project lists, prioritizing and deadlines, distractions and accountability. 5. Calendars: okay. Calendars. Unless you get up at the exactly the same time every single day and do the exact same thing in the exact same place. You need a calendar. So that's everyone. Your calendar is a place. He write things that need to happen at specific times on specific days. Use your calendar for meetings, appointments and events. Use it for designated blocks of time to work or exercise or have fun. Also, birthdays and special occasions do not use it for tasks that can be done at other times because once that day passes, if you haven't done that thing, it's lost. I have only one calendar. Maintaining one is challenging enough With two. You must keep them and sink constantly, or something will slip through the cracks when you least expect it and can least afford it . I prefer an electronic calendar because you'll always or nearly always have it with you on your phone. Remember that we're only using it for noting times you need to be somewhere or do something not for to do lists or doodles or long term planning what you want. It is an at a glance view of your day in your week without extraneous details. One exception to this. Is that all at an errand before? After an event? If I will be in the neighborhood to do that errand, It's a task from my to do list, but it makes sense to say shop for something right after my meeting downtown because I'll be next door to that shop. And normally I am not. If you want to use paper, I recommend the smallest one possible. I'm not discussing planners in this class. That's a big topic. Those are the books to use for creating a strategy for your life. Yearly and quarterly. Various lists, strategies, planning values, long term goals, etcetera. Most people don't need to schlep that big book everywhere they go, but you do need your calendar when you're out and about. If someone calls you to make a date, you can check your calendar right there. If a meeting ends and other needs to be scheduled, you could do it on the spot. Elektronik calendars are also terrific for recurring events. Put it in once, set the repeat and you're done reminders. I use these a lot to ping myself about something that's happening in the next day or a few days in advance. I look at my calendar all the time, but a reminder is a great backup plan. They're great for color coding types of events. You can do that on paper, but now that you're carrying a bunch of markers around all the time, this color coding can be used to keep your business calendar separate from your personal one. Simply choose to hide one of the other when needed. I recommend having all of them visible at once because again, you want to avoid scheduling conflicts. Your electronic calendars automatically available on your phone and your laptop of the same time, and it could be shared with others, and it gets backed up automatically. If your phone and laptop fall overboard, you can still access that data. If your paper planner falls overboard. Well, it's jetsam Now. Review your calendar regularly. It disturbs your meeting. Notes aren't very useful. If you never look at them again, your calendar cannot help you if you don't know what's in it Here. A calendar project ideas. You probably already use a calendar, so your product is to review that calendar and make sure you're using it effectively. Are you using just one to avoid overbooking? It's much better to color code your calendar to separate personal from business than to use two calendars. Use your calendar only for events that happen at specific times. If you use it for random task that don't get done, they get lost meetings, appointments, states, birthdays, anniversaries, review it daily, weekly and monthly. This is to ensure that you don't miss important dates. 6. Project lists and to do lists: How do you know what to do at any given time? On any given day, you can't prioritize unless you have promised to prioritise. Here's what you need a project list If you don't have one, how do you know what to do at any given time? In a given day, you can't prioritize unless you have some work to prioritize. At work. You have assignments and tasks that are straightforward, but they're also maybe some that are less so. Projects need deadlines. The less clear ones are often the ones that you are taking initiative on. There's a little or no external accountability. A big deciding factor about whether project will be completed or not is whether it has a deadline. A project with no deadline drags on for years or hangs out on your list, rebuking you forever. Some projects may not seem to have an ending point, so it's hard to assign a deadline. That's a tricky one. Any goal setting class will tell you that your goals must be measurable and timely. That's why diet programs don't let you just say you're gonna lose some weight. They make you say that you're gonna lose £10 by Christmas that's measurable and timely. If you don't assign a time period, you can't measure. If you can't measure, you can't really tell if you're doing it and then you don't have a motivation to continue. Some goals don't need to be on your calendar right now. You're allowed to stash future projects on your list. You may not realistically have time to learn French Right now. You may be putting off replacing your stove until another financial obligation is met. Just some examples. Having them on the project list means you won't forget about, um, and you're free to stop ruminating over them all the time and feeling bad that you haven't started from, it's important to write down your projects. This is another aspect of smart goal setting. The S stands for specific. When your project exists only in your mind, they are a little vague. You imagine is a Your imagination is very creative, but not always very practical. That's fine. You need to start with imagination in order to create reality from that a finished product in the world. Writing is very helpful. You have to assign words to your ideas. Here's some product examples remodeled the kitchen. Write a book, Create a marketing plan. Learn French Change careers. How do you tackle a project? Break it into two DUIs. That's the next section. Okay to do lists. One of the biggest problems I see with people's to do list is that they contain projects a product is not to do. Now that you understand the difference, get them off your to do list and onto your projects. List. Your to do's come from your project. However, every active project should have a to do item associated with it. Note that you only need one. This is the natural planning model that David Allen recommends. If you feel inclined to create a detailed plan for a project, you can go ahead. But you can also simply do the next required thing. Each time you completed to do with the next one will normally become apparent constructor to do list to maximize your chances of getting it done. Each day's list should be short 3 to 5 items each. Itis items should also be sure it and immediately doable. Ross is probably a project use action verbs, Just like with the project list, you need a to do list to know what you need to be doing it in a given time. Dangers of not having a to do list. You become reactive rather than proactive. You put out fires Instead of focusing on the important work, you're more vulnerable to distractions your unrealistic about how much you can get done in a day. Without this list, several bad things tend to happen. First, you fall into reactive mode. Too much you let you to do is come out you from outside sources instead of your own projects. But those are actually somebody else's two DUIs. Second, you tend to focus on what's on fire rather than what's actually important. Third, you're much more vulnerable to being distracted because you aren't focusing on anything in particular. Your attention is searching around for something bright and shiny. Fourth, you are totally unrealistic about how much you can get done in a day. As I mentioned in the Project section, your mind isn't completely rational. It views a pleasing or simple task of things so I can toss that off in a few minutes if using more complex task or a less palatable task of things, huh? I'm gonna leave that until another day when I have more time. Which, by the way, does not arrive. Whether you're producing a financial report or planning a vacation, you have to do these projects step by step For the report, you may need to get last month spreadsheet from your coworker. That's it to do for your vacation. Pulling a family on where to go in August? Is it to do If the next step in your project takes more time like completing a spreadsheet or researching vacation spots your to do is it's spend a certain amount of time on it. I'm a fan of writing. My to do is onto an index card. The small size feels manageable, and the small writing area means that my descriptions are simple into the point. I use action verbs to prop myself things like Call Ellen to schedule the next meeting, fill out a form and mail it. Use words like send right ask schedule, etcetera. This helps you identify and actually to do instead of sneaking a project onto your list. To do list examples, call Ellen to schedule the next meeting, fill out that form and mail it. Ask group for feedback on the report. If you consistently don't get through your daily to do list, analyze, why is there too much on there? Sadly, most of us have more work than we can get done. Even in our personal lives. There's more to do than ours in the day. Since you know time is static, you know that either you have to cross those things off the list or across something else off, so that task can take its place. So here we come to a wonderful topic called but not to do list. This is a handy idea. Also from David Allen. Sometimes it's hard to let go of a task, even if you don't need to do it and don't want to do it. They're probably some should do is on there, probably sent task that somebody else could do, or even better, that can remain undone indefinitely with little consequence. Not to do list is particularly helpful for perfectionists and folks who feel compelled to complete projects, even though the remaining tasks don't add any value. The not to do list tasks you can delegate tasks you can streamline and or speed up unnecessary desk you. You do just from habit. Tasks you know are never going to get done. Task that won't matter. In the bigger scheme of things, this list is also a great way to make sure all your to do is are furthering important projects in your life. We all have limited time. We all want to look back and see that we've spent that time accomplishing things we cared about rather than busy ourselves with low level tasks because of their easy or they're just there. That's another temptation to do what's easy, what we've always done. Here's some more things to eliminate from your to do lists. Is there anything you can delegate Anything you could do faster with almost the same result . Anything that falls into the category would be nice but not necessary. Now you could just truck across those items off your list and be done with him. That can work for some task, but others will remain in the back of your mind, popping out in the middle of the night to keep you from sleeping. Your brain is trying to do its job and keep track of these things. It knows that you didn't really commit to not doing that task that you took off your list. However, if you create this separate not to do list, those tasks can have a place to live and your brain can let them go because they're safe there, so that gives you mental relief. It's also helpful to take a look at that list now and again and feel good about all the unimportant stuff that's not clogging up your time anymore. The consultant, Ivy Lee, was famous for having advised executive Charles M. Schwab on improving productivity back in 1918. His method was to create a list of up to six tasks that needed to be done the next day. Never more than that. In order of importance. Each day, Schwab and his executives work to complete each task and move on to the next. Until the day was done, any task leftover well left over went on to the next day's list. Six tasks only per day. Do them in order, completed one before moving on. Put undone task onto tomorrow's list. It sounds simple. Creating a list like this will make you think hard about what is truly important because you only have room for 62 DUIs, and that can be a challenge. Giving yourself a hard limit makes it usually prioritize. Making the list makes it easier to get back to work because you know exactly what to do. This also isn't so easy. It takes practice to craft your to do is in a way that makes them crystal clear so you can get to work immediately. Finally, it actually is simple. Six things. That's it. No fluff, no extraneous details or rabbit holes. Simple means no distraction. No rethinking, no decision making action words. Exactly how you phrase your to do is is important. You want to use the words that indicate specific individual actions. If your list has items that start with the words plan or develop or explore, those aren't two DUIs. Those air projects using action words is an important concept from the getting things done . Method action words for two DUIs. Call email, Draft ask schedule find by print Review. You can't sit down right now and get something planned. The correct to do is going to start with a word like call or ask or draft actions you can do the moment you read them without further researcher thinking. Other words are find gather review. Fill out by print CEO. Simple. Those are action words for projects are things like resolve, design, handle, update, plan, strategize, developed and explore. All of those indicate multiple steps to do is one step. If you can't picture yourself starting immediately on a task on your list, it's probably not a one step task. You're gonna only get your to your destination or your goal by taking one step at a time. Sure, you have to look down the road now and again, so you're not veering off course, but mostly it step by step steps you can focus on and get done that move onto the next one . The projects and to do list project there a lot of ideas in this section, but nearly everyone will benefit from revamping their to do lists. Keep the daily list short 3 to 6 items. Make sure your to do's are not projects for this project. Practice making this short to do list for a few weeks and see how much more productive you are. While also feeling less stress, use the action words and make sure your to do's are doable tasks, not projects 7. Prioritizing: now worked in prioritizing section. Prioritizing is better thought of is an art than a science? Not only that, but it needs to be fluid and flexible. Older time manage models were pretty rigid about what's in a task with a B A task and what's a C. These days, our lives are more complicated. There's we're blending between home and work life, and we're more challenge to find time to live, productive and fulfilling. That means prior to prioritizing your daily tasks, needs to take into account your big projects in your life goals. It also needs to accommodate changes on the fly. By this, I mean you information that could change your course of action for the better. I don't mean urgent situations that pop up in distract you. Even though they're low priority. It's hard to resist that urgency. It has energy and excitement to it, but it will derail you from what's truly important. The next part is to compare the time you spend with to what your objectives are. If you're doing this for work, will be to clear up to date detailed description of what's expected if you want your job. If you responsibilities were not crystal clear or if they're in conflict with each other, well, there's no way you could be effective and using your time for your personal life. Refer back to your vision, your goals for yourself you worked with in the analyze section. This kind of analysis requires you to shift between looking at the big picture of what you're trying to accomplish with your work and the small picture of what you spend time doing each day. I need speaking grew in sea between them. But you can't look at both at once. Here's an illustration of that from Steven Covey wrote. Seven Habits of Highly Effective People used the analogy of filling a jar with rocks, gravel, sand and water in that order. The rocks. The major important items have to go in first because they won't fit otherwise. Next comes the gravel. You can imagine if you start putting sand in the jar first, you won't fit. Many rocks in that sand can easily fill the gaps between rocks and gravel. Then whatever space is left to be filled with water, the least important work. What's in each category for you rocks, gravel, sand, water again the idea isn't to fit everything in because you won't be able to. We all have a list of would be nice pebbles that won't ever get into that jar. In case I haven't mentioned it yet. Try to make peace with that. You think you can fit it all in and you're more likely to scatter your attention and really not get to those big rocks in the jar. The big rocks must come first. You can take the results of your time tracking and assign each thing as rocks, gravel, sand or water. Do all the rocks fit? What water? Sand is the best candidate to minimize or dump out. I deal that you're gonna find a bunch of water and your schedule you didn't realize was there. If you use the ivy least excited to do list those six items, we're all gonna be big rocks. Whatever else you get done in a day is in one of the other category that said every day will have unexpected events into the derail your plans. But having a plan and an idea of how long things take well mean that most of the time you're in control of your time. The unscheduled from the now happen. Add all your non work activities and commitments to your calendar, but your work into the small amount of time that's left over. Another prioritizing technique that attacks this problem from the opposite end is the unscheduled This was popularized by Neil Fiore. Now have it. With this method, you put all your social commitments, exercise meals, errands, meetings and any other recurring non work activities into your weekly schedule. The fun stuff, too. What's left is the time you have to commit to your project. Now you can see that you don't actually have five hours at a stretch to spend on it. You need to fit into the schedules somehow, and you need to honor the time that you've committed to rest and recreation in order not to feel oppressed by the amount of work you need to do. This method relieves the feeling that work is time consuming drudgery. First, you're only working for small amounts of time that you find in your own schedule. Second, you don't feel deprived of fun because that's already in your schedule. You must not skimp on fun. David Allen's HGTV Prioritizing Criteria context, time available, energy available and priority. 1/3 effective way to prioritize prioritize comes from David Allen. This one involves selecting task to do, based on how much time you have much energy you have, what resource is you have and the priority of the tabs. Here's an example. If you have an hour your desk before your gym class, you can write an outline of a book chapter or compiled meeting notes or get through a chunk of business reading. If you have a few minutes waiting for the bus after your gym class, you can call someone to make an appointment. It was the end of the day and you're tired. You can spend 10 minutes putting things away on your desk. You juggle these criteria around as you look at your daily to do list this method. Encourage use. It'll look for bits of time you can use to knock off attacks. It's not about being hyper productive about that, about using your time Well, if you'd rather use your train commute time home to gaze out the window listening music instead of composing emails. That is fine. As I mentioned the beginning, we want to be mindful of how we use our time a year from now, what will you feel proud of? Having spent mindful about how you use your time, respect your own priority? They have to date. Using techniques like this can help you respect and honor your priorities, which in turn helps you reach your goal. Many of us are prone to putting the needs of and priorities of others first, either by upbringing or accidentally through lack of focus. They can also help keep your priorities up to date because you get used to reviewing. Often things change in this modern world, sometimes pretty quickly. You can't set your priorities once and then forget about So. The private prioritizing project is to try one of the three techniques discussed in this section. Run your to do list through them and see which one works best for you. Or just use one and use it for a few months to see whether it's effective for you. Not everything is gonna work for everyone. Rocks, gravel, sand and water. The unscheduled getting things done is context, time, energy and priority 8. Distractions: Now we'll talk about distractions. The bad news is distractions interruptions junk away. They're definitely wasted, minimized. But it's up to you to keep them at bay. Many people, that means willpower. I want to take a moment to talk about willpower because it's gotten a bad rap in recent years. People say it's overrated or it doesn't exist. But really, it's just misunderstood. The naysayers presented is a blunt instrument that people beat their temptations into submission with, as if there really people who could easily sit next to a plate of cookies for an hour and not grab one. What's really happening, that these people have either reframed their ideas about cookies or are using other tricks to distract themselves? They also are probably well rested and not stressed out. Being tired and stressed out destroys your willpower. I highly recommend the boat. The willpower Instinct by Kelly McGonigal. He wanted more okay, back to avoiding distractions. Instead of attempting sheer willpower, try setting up your environment and setting expectations so that you are less exposed to temptation. Set expectations. Set up your environment for success. If you work in an office, it could be hard to resist talking to co workers when they stopped by or going to the break room for more coffee. By the same token, if you appear to be available, people are more likely to stop to chat. Some workplace culture is required to be available responsive all day. You know that you have to struggle the car about chunks of time when you conveyed interruption. In these cases, you need to manage the expectations of others. If you share a calendar, name your work sessions in a way that lets others know that you're not available. Here's some ideas to try baked meetings, work somewhere different. Turn often stroller back and me and creating fake meetings. It may sound kind of underhanded, but look at it this way. You're having a meeting with yourself. Get important work, war. You can work in a different place. I once had a client about a big window between his cubicle and his boss's office, and his boss could see him at his desk, come over and asking questions regularly during the day. Only way he could get some distraction free. Time to work was to work where his boss couldn't see him. I advise him to book a conference room for himself several meetings a week and then sit in the corner where he couldn't be seen from a glass door insert or try saying it's simple is putting on headphones. That's a classic way of indicating that your intention is elsewhere and people are less likely to try to get it. You can also set expectations for digital distractions in the males. Be specific about when you get back to people. Maybe it'll be afternoon, but not immediately. Put this in your sig line. You could do the same thing with your outgoing voicemail message. Many company cultures encourage this always on status, but more companies are realizing that no one could get substantial work done if they're constantly being interrupted. An office I worked out recently is installing pods, tiny rooms that fit one or two people for privacy and sound reduction as a way to combat business and noise of the Open Officers plan Website even says that employees are clamoring for private space. But of course, there the classics Turn your phone off, disable email alerts. It's those little bells. Have you completely trained to respond to them? This is necessary I urge you to recondition yourself not to respond to every alert like Pavlov's dog. Explore the feeling of remaining in the present with whatever you're doing and not being drawn into whether over the alert wants from I know it's hard. Think of it as a mindfulness practice. It's a habit to develop like any other. It won't come easily at first, but with time it feels natural, or at least easier. More ideas to try. Capture ideas for later work in shorter bursts. Don't deny yourself Breaks count to 10. What problems resolve themselves if you work alone. Whether at home or not, your distractions air probably more internal. I often get ideas for another product when I'm writing. Instead of getting online to research something, I capture the idea for the future. I do that and then Evernote notebook or just even on a note pad. That way don't lose the idea, but I also don't lose momentum. What I'm currently working, noting these ideas is great, but you also need a process to make them useful. Round up all those posted papers grabs e mails to yourself. Matchbook covers take the time to get those ideas toe where you will use them. Just writing them down is not enough. Then you'd action to become real, make them to do to do list items, project list items, meeting agendas, etcetera. The best way I found to keep this kind of distraction under control is to commit to working in half hour sessions. For me, that's enough time to be productive, but not so long that I dread it. This ties in with the previous section about taking breaks. Even just a few minutes between half hour sessions is helpful, even seem hired, wired to prick up when something new comes into their environment, you throw back to needing to defend against predators. This makes distractions even harder to resist. Some people call this shiny object syndrome when they spot something, they feel compelled to go over and have a look. But I have some ideas for you to come back that if you work for yourself as I do, your work involves long term projects where there's no immediate payoff. Offer your doing them alone or doing your part alone, so you don't have the external accountability to help you out. Fix that you to get yourself some structure, you know, if you have to make it yourself picking amount of time that you can truly focus for while the same time getting a significant chunk of work, you can only focus for 15 minutes. Don't stick it out for half an hour. That will just waste time. Give your all for 15 minutes, then take a break. The important part is working without letting distractions intrude for the length of time that you've decided. The other important part is that you know a break is coming soon. So as with the unscheduled, you don't feel that your work is going on and on. Drop count to 10 before you give in to distraction. No, this technique is mentioned. The willpower book I talked about. It's a psychological trick. Many situations are self limiting, like colds. There's no cure for the common cold. You just have to wait it out. Situations that seem urgent or like emergencies. Often arts we didn't resolve on their own. You don't need to step in. Similarly, people ask you questions or want your help will often figure things out on their own. Find somebody else more available. Remember that people often reflexively ask for help instead of doing it on their own, and they're more prone to doing this. If you were always there to help them, enabling problems can just go away or get resolved by other things taking precedence. Here's the project for Distractions Jews, a technique based on your most prevalent problem. Like the other products in this class, you can try all these methods or the one that seems easiest, where the one that feels like it will help you the most. Also, like the other projects, create a baseline for yourself so that you can effectively judge how much one of the ideas helped you. If you need private time, try fake meetings or working somewhere else in your office were using headphones. If you're mainly distracted by your phone, turn off digital alerts. If you're restless and creative, try capturing ideas for later and working in shorter bursts. If you tend to push yourself too much, don't deny yourself breaks. If you get pulled away from work by others, try counting to 10 and letting problems resolve themselves 9. Accountability: Now with the accountability section, you've experienced the power of accountability most of your life on your first homework assignment after school, on your own time in your own way, you had to complete a piece of work present by the deadline of the next day. Without that deadline, you probably wouldn't have done the work right. That line. Help you shake your time, and probably your parents did, too. Homework happens sometime after school and before dinner you homework time was in your schedule and could not be usurped by other activities like TV your game. What is to create accountability? Deadlines, Rewards Getting your money's worth Maintain your self image setting. A good example. Not letting others down. Group accountability. The accountability existed in the deadline to hand in your homework and also in the affected had on your grade in the class. If you weren't too motivated by the time pressure, you were motivated by one to get a good grade one of the two purposes of accountability. To help you use your time effectively and help you reach goals. You care you're the harsh truth. You're already accountable for every minute of your day. You could waste it or spend it well, sure, you have to be at work and do your job in. If I'm in it, you make choices about how you spend your time. It's all scary to think of having all that responsibility. That's why it's so often easier just to do what's in front of you. Work that's created by others and presented to you lets you go straight into action. You're accountable for performing your job duties, but not for devising and choosing the word, which is more time consuming and uses different thinking styles. People joke about what they want written on their gravestones, and it's not. She spent hours a day on Facebook, right? What they need is that they want to look back from beyond the grave and feel that they spent their time on the earth. Well, you don't have to go nuts examining every meeting for your day for this kind of productivity, but you need to be aware of when you're not being productive and not hide it from yourself . Accountability styles, getting your money's worth, not losing money, maintaining your self image, setting an example, not letting others down being part of a group. Different kinds of accountability work for different people. Some people are motivated by money losing it. Late fees, getting their money's worth with a gym membership. Others are motivated by maintaining their self image, being the guy who always brings the great snacks, for example, someone a model behavior. So they decide to de clutter in order to set a good example for their kids something they're motivated by not letting someone else down. If they announced a customer is that a certain product will be available next month, they really, really want to follow through. Some folks are in the previous category with a twist. They default to doing things for others that they wouldn't do for themselves. Overcome that. Tell yourself for your well rested and doing good self care, you could do a much better job work serving others. Groups are great for accountability. You can join a group or start one. Think about groups like Weight Watchers, where you all have the same goal and you get positive reinforcement for reaching a gold. Participate in something that's already in progress. That will happen without any effort from you except showing up like a gym class or a support group meeting. One of my clients was a consultant to a large company. I work with many people that wasn't part of any of the company. Since he worked for himself. I suggested he create a secret accountability. So to do that it shows a property, want to get going of the company. And when he talked to employees who were involved, he let them know what he was doing and how it was going. He wasn't required to do this, but he was in regular contact with certain employees. So they're recurring. Contact became a way for him to account for his progress. And it didn't matter that they didn't know what he was up to. Your ideas for an accountability project. As you've noticed with some of the other sections in this class, the way you choose solutions to tries to understand yourself how you operate, not everyone is motivated by the same concepts in situations. Try the technique that appeals to you most, and the one that feels the most doable. Well over the motivators I listed earlier, along with some examples, don't forget to record your benchmarks. You have proof that the things you try have improved getting your money's worth, Diana will be sure to go to the gym or complete the class that she paid a lot of money for not losing money. Tim signed up with a program that charges a fee when he doesn't complete the task committed to maintaining yourself in. It's very important to shell it to be known as the go to person for setting up meetings. Setting an example. John knows he could model behavior for newer employees. It takes a great satisfaction, not letting others down. Jennifer prides herself on always being there when she is needed being fired Group Lee knows how much more life with a completely task when he has to report back to the group. 10. Wrap up: the short class packed in a lot of information. Remember the changing habits takes time. Also remember that knowing how to do something is not the same as doing it. Day after day after day, watch the class again, or focus on a specific section until you master the material. If you're still feeling a bit overwhelmed, pick the section that seems most doable to you. And she was just one technique to try and be patient with yourself. Remember to surround yourself with as much support as you can, including post its phone reminders and accountability buddies. This is the time of your life. Strive to use it in ways that are valuable and meaningful to you. I am working on part two of this class and that will present more specific methods of managing your time. So stay tuned. In the meantime, I'm giving you a bonus. PDF of my booklet 101 Productivity TIPS Use It is a reference and keep yourself on track