Time management is one of the most important pillars of productivity. When you improve your time management skills, you boost your productivity levels. Time management can be hard to master but trust me it becomes super easy if you have the right tools. In this blog post, I want to talk about 5 time management tools that will change your life.
I have printable worksheets of all these time management tools on my Etsy shop and you can get it right here!
#1 Productivity Wheel
This is the first tool that you need to start off your journey to become a time management master. Before you can make changes to your time management strategies, you need to audit your current time distribution. This tool will help you audit your actual time distribution and help you create your ideal time distribution.
A productivity wheel is a donut shaped diagram divided into 24 parts for each hour. Here is how you can use this tool practically –
- Create 4 or more categories of routines and tasks that you do on a daily basis. For example – Daily tasks, Goal hustle , Me-time, Socializing, Distractions, Commute etc.
- Color code these categories for visual representation of your daily schedule
- Use the color code to depict your ideal daily schedule
- Observe your actual daily schedule for 2 or more days and depict it in the worksheet
- Find the gaps and make desired changes to get closer to your ideal schedule
#2 Priority Matrix
How many times have you tried to make to-do lists and stick to them – and failed? I would always get exhausted working through my to-do list and still being in a place where a lot of stuff remains undone. I would do things when there was just no option other than not doing them. When I decided to change my situation, I came across the priority matrix method of managing your tasks.
A priority matrix helps you categorize your tasks into 4 quadrants and take the right action at the right time. Make a master list of all your tasks and categorize them on the scales of importance and urgency. The four quadrants are –
- Urgent, Important (DO NOW)
- Not Urgent, Important (SCHEDULE)
- Urgent, Not Important (DELEGATE)
- Not Urgent, Not Important (ELIMINATE)
These are the quadrants and the general guideline to deal with the tasks in these categories. Sometimes you cannot eliminate or delegate certain tasks and that is okay. But their importance and urgency understanding helps you to schedule them in your planning sessions.
You can get this printable worksheet by clicking here!
#3 Time Blocking Planner
If you want to manage your time wisely, you need to know what is it that you will be doing at any given time. The time blocking method is the best thing that I have implemented in my entire life. It has made me more intentional and increased my productivity.
The time blocking method suggests that you allocate specific time periods for each of your tasks, appointments and routines. This method has various advantages such as-
- Helps you stay on track
- Keeps you accountable for each minute
- Focusing on one task at a time
- Not worrying about when you will get the rest of your work done
- Avoids over/under estimation of your abilities
There are multiple ways to implement the time blocking method. Here are some tools that can help you chalk it down –
- Google Calendar (if you are a digital planner)
- Bullet journal (if you need a super customized layout)
- Timed weekly calendar (if you are a pen and paper planner)
I have a weekly time block planner in my time management toolkit which you can get by clicking right here.
#4 Pomodoro Planner
A pomodoro planner is a tool for increasing your productivity by managing tasks and time spans for various projects. I have detailed blog post on how you can use the pomodoro method to increase your productivity which you can read here.
The basic principles of the pomodoro technique are –
- Work for 1 Pomodoro which is always of 25 minutes
- Take a 5-minute break after each Pomodoro and a 20-minute break after every 4 pomodori
You can use this technique in multiple areas of your life. Treat any big task as a project and use the pomodoro method to complete it. I have personally used this method in various personal projects such as decluttering my house, planning a birthday party, studying and also for various work projects such as publishing a blog post, creating printables, brainstorming content calendars etc.
If you are interested in a detailed article about this method, click here.
These time management tools have helped me master time management and become so much more productive. Let me know in the comments below if you have any other tools for time management.