Time Management Techniques from Highly Successful People

Hello guys, welcome to my new section called “The Knowledge Book”. In this page, I am going to post valuable articles with tips, techniques and habits about making the small differences which would turn out to be quite effective in the long run.

Today, I am going to talk about time management techniques from highly successful people which I think you should add up into your day-to-day life and see the difference for yourself.

1. Make quick decisions when it doesn’t matter

You may have already heard of this before. Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, wears his grey coloured t-shirt every single day. Steve Jobs, one of the co-founders of Apple, wore his black turtleneck to every one of his keynote speeches.

Steve Jobs in his black turtleneck while doing a keynote speech

Image Source – Yahoo

When we wake up, everyone is going to have a tank filled with will power. As the day unravels that will power level is going to drop along with the decisions we take.

So, what these guys are doing is they are saving their will power for more important decisions, for the things that really matter. If you have a big wardrobe with many choices, you are going to waste so much of your energy for something unnecessary.

How can I implement this in my life?

I believe each and every one of you has that one outfit which makes you feel like you are on top of the world when you slip it in. So, empty your wardrobe except for that outfit. Go out there and buy the same outfit as much as you need. Start to wear it every single day.

This way, you feel amazing every day and you save your precious willpower. Two birds in one stone right there.

2. Schedule your day according to your energy levels

Make full use of your enery tank

Image Source – Refutureyourlife

Each and every one of us has our own peak time in the day where our energy levels are high and you feel like crushing your to-do-list. For me, it is around 9 to 12 at night. I am trying to be a morning person, but I am not there right now. May be your energy levels are high right after you get up in the morning.

How do I implement this in my life?

Find your peak hours and schedule your day around it. Do your less important stuff for when you have a low energy level. Right after lunch is the time I do my shallow work. Because after lunch, I feel so sleepy, my energy levels go down the hill. So during this time, we should pick our less important tasks like replying to emails, listening to a podcast or whatever it might be for you.

3. Go with the 2-minute rule for Smaller Tasks

This rule simply states that if a task in your to-do-list can be done in 2 minutes, just go ahead and finish it.

This way you can tick off all your small tasks quickly so that you could focus on more important tasks freely.

Read this article to learn more about the 2-minute rule.

How can I implement this in my life?

First of all, go through your to-do list and identify the 2-minute tasks you need to do today. It can be communicating something to your co-worker, writing in your journal, giving someone a compliment, doing 10 pushups or maybe just relaxing and doing mindful meditation. Whatever it might be, if it can be done inside 2 minutes just do it.

4. Try Elon Musk’s Time Boxing Method for Bigger Tasks

So, this is a method used by world-famous successful entrepreneur, Elon Musk. He breaks down his tasks to 5-minute tasks. He then just focuses on that simple task for that 5 minutes and gets it done. Then he moves on to his next task for the next 5 minutes and so on for the whole day.

This is a very powerful method and a proven method because when we finish a task we get that adrenaline rush, the feeling of achievement, the motivation to move on to the next task. This constant motivation we get from being able to cross that one task off our list for every 5 minutes is very useful to get through the day.

Watch this youtube video from Thomas Frank to learn more about time boxing.

How can I implement this in my life?

I will explain this using one of my personal experiences. As software engineers, a very important skill we have to develop is tracking bugs and fixing them. When we get the details about a bug, first of all, we try and replicate the bug in our local environment. After that, we track the code from head to tail until we find the place that gives the error. Then we do the necessary fixes after that. Even though the process sounds simple it can be a long process especially for a beginner just like me. I learned this the hard way.

So, what I do is I break the tasks down as much as possible into 5-minute tasks and finish them. This way, I can keep a clear mind and focus on the thing we are doing at the moment.

5. Use your Free Time Effectively

We all have free periods in our schedules to relax and have some fun doing whatever we want. Most of us may browse through social media, play some games or watch some Netfilx. But if you really think about it, don’t you feel like you are unable to focus on your work right after your free time? Well, at least most of us do.

I feel this all the time. Right after, playing some PUBG matches in my free time, I try to focus on my code which by the way is an impossible thing to do for me. My mind just wanders all over the place. I know most of you should have had this feeling too.

So, here what you could do is to replace the thing that you do in your free time with something useful.

How can I add this to my routine?

So, instead of mindlessly browsing through social media or playing games, you could try reading a few pages of a book. You could organize your computer’s folder structure. You could plan the next day or how you are going to spend the weekend. You listen to a podcast or an audiobook. You could learn a new language ( Try the Duolingo app). Take a walk. Do some mindful meditation to clear your mind. Learn a new skill.

It should not be something that bores you. Pick something you enjoy and something that would add value to your life in the long run.

So, I hope you guys learned something valuable today. Thank you for taking the time to read the article. I’ll see you tomorrow.

Published by Thisura Thenuka

I am a passionate software engineering student. But cricket is my first love ❤

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