Time Management 1

Learn how to upgrade your skills & achieve goals faster than ever.

We all want to get stuff done, whether it’s the work we have to do so we can get on with what we want to do, or indeed, the projects we feel are our purpose in life. To that end, here’s a collection of 50 hacks, tips, tricks, and mnemonic devices I’ve collected that can help you work better.
Most Important Tasks (MITs): At the start of each day (or the night before) highlight the three or four most important things you have to do in the coming day. Do them first. If you get nothing else accomplished aside from your MITs, you’ve still had a pretty productive day.
Big Rocks: The big projects you’re working on at any given moment. Set aside time every day or week to move your big rocks forward.
Inbox Zero: Decide what to do with every email you get, the moment you read it. If there’s something you need to do, either do it or add it to your todo list and delete or file the email. If it’s something you need for reference, file it. Empty your email inbox every day.
Wake up earlier: Add a productive hour to your day by getting up an hour earlier — before everyone else starts imposing on your time.
One In, One Out: Avoid clutter by adopting a replacement-only standard. Every time you but something new, you throw out or donate something old. For example, you buy a new shirt, you get rid of an old one. (Variation: One in, Two Out — useful when you begin to feel overwhelmed by your possessions.)
Brainstorming: The act of generating dozens of ideas without editing or censoring yourself. Lots of people use mindmaps for this: stick the thing you want to think about in the middle (a problem you need to solve, a theme you want to write about, etc.) and start writing whatever you think of. Build off of each of the sub-topics, and each of their sub-topics. Don’t worry about whether the ideas are any good or not — you don’t have to follow through on them, just get them out of your head. After a while, you’ll start surprising yourself with some really creative concepts.
Ubiquitous Capture: Always carry something to take notes with — a pen and paper, a PDA, a stack of index cards. Capture every thought that comes into your mind, whether it’s an idea for a project you’d like to do, an appointment you need to make, something you need to pick up next time you’re at the store, whatever. Review it regularly and transfer everything to where it belongs: a todo list, a filing system, a journal, etc.
Get more sleep: Sleep is essential to health, learning, and awareness. Research shows the body goes through a complete sleep cycle in about 90 minutes, so napping for less than that doesn’t have the same effect that real sleep does (although it does make you feel better). Get 8 hours a night, at least. Learn to see sleep as a pleasure, not a necessary evil or a luxury.

10+2*5: Work in short spurts of 10 minutes, interrupted by 2 minute breaks. Use a timer. Do this 5 times an hour to stay on target without over-taxing your physical and mental resources. Spend those 2 minutes getting a drink, going to the bathroom, or staring out a window.
SMART goals : A rubric for creating and pursuing your goals, helping to avoid setting goals that are simply unattainable. Stands for: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely.
SUCCES: From Chip and Dan Heath’s book, Made to Stick, SUCCES is a set of characteristics that make ideas memorable (“sticky”): sticky ideas are Simple, Unexpected, Concrete, Credible, Emotional Stories.
Eat the Frog: Do your most unpleasant task first. Based on the saying that if the first thing you do in the morning is eat a frog, the day can only get better from then on.
80/20 Rule/Pareto Principle: Generally speaking, the 80/20 Principle says that most of our results come from a small portion of our actual work, and conversely, that we spend most of our energy doing things that aren’t ultimately all that important. Figure out which part of your work has the greatest results and focus as much of your energy as you can on that part.
What’s the Next Action?: Don’t plan out everything you need to do to finish a project, just focus on the very next thing you need to do to move it forward. Usually doing the next, little thing will lead to another, and another, until we’re either done or we run into a block: we need more information, we need someone else to catch up, etc. Be as concrete and discrete as possible: you can’t “install cable”, all you can do is “call the cable company to request cable installation”.

The Secret: There is no secret.
Slow Down : Make time for yourself. Eat slowly. Enjoy a lazy weekend day. Take the time to do things right, and keep a balance between the rush-rush world of work and the rest of your life.
Time Boxing: Assign a set amount of time per day to work on a task or project. Focus entirely on that one thing during that time. Don’t worry about finishing it, just worry about giving that amount of undivided attention to the project. (Variation: fixed goals. For example, you don’t get up until you’ve written 1,000 words, or processed 10 orders, or whatever.)
Batch Process: Do all your similar tasks together. For example, don’t deal with emails sporadically throughout the day; instead, set aside an hour to go through your email inbox and respond to emails. Do the same with voice mail, phone calls, responding to letters, filing, and so on — any routine, repetitive tasks.
Covey Quadrants: A system for assigning priorities. Two axes, one for importance, the other for urgency, intersect. Tasks are assigned to one of the four quadrants: not important, not urgent; not important, urgent; important, not urgent; and important and urgent. Purge the tasks that are neither important nor urgent, defer the unimportant but urgent ones, try to avoid letting the important ones become urgent, and as much as possible work on the tasks in the important but not urgent quadrant.
Handle Everything Once: Don’t set things aside hoping you’ll have time to deal with them later. Ask yourself “What do I need to do with this” every time you pick up something from your email list, and either do it, schedule it for later, defer it to someone else, or file it.
Don’t Break the Chain: Use a calendar to track your daily goals. Every day you do something, like working out or writing 1,000 words, make a big red “X”. Every day the chain will grow longer. Don’t break the chain! That is, don’t let any non-X days interrupt your chain of successful days.
Review: Schedule a time with yourself every week to look over what you’ve done that week and what you want to do the next week. Ask yourself if there are any new projects you should be starting, and if what you’re working on is moving you closer to your goals for your life.
Roles: Everyone fills several different roles in their life. For instance, I’m a teacher, a student, a writer, a step-father, a partner, a brother, a son, an uncle, an anthropologist, and so on. Understanding your different roles and learning to keep them distinct when necessary can help you keep some sense of balance between them. Make goals around the various roles you fill, and make sure that your goals fit with your goals in other roles.
Flow: The flow state happens when you’re so absorbed in whatever you’re doing that you have no awareness of the passing of time and the work just happens automatically. It’s hard to trigger consciously, but you can create the conditions for it by allowing yourself a block of uninterrupted time, minimizing distractions, and calming yourself.
Do It Now : Fight procrastination by adopting “do it now!” as your mantra. Limit yourself to 60 seconds when making a decision, decide what you’re going to do with every input in your life as soon as you encounter it, learn to make bold decisions even when you’re not really sure. Keep moving forward.
Time Log : Lawyers have to track everything they do in the day and how long they do it so they can bill their clients and remain accountable. You need to be accountable to yourself, so keep track of how much time you really spend on the things that are important to you by tracking your time.
Structured Procrastination : A strategy of recognizing and using one’s procrastinating tendencies to get stuff done. Items at the top of top of the list are avoided by doing seemingly less difficult and less important tasks further down the list — making the procrastinator highly productive. The trick is to make sure the items at the top are apparently urgent — with pressing deadlines and apparently large consequences. But, of course, they aren’t really all that urgent. Structured procrastination requires a masterful skill at self-deception, which fortunately bigtime procrastinators excel at.
Personal Mission Statement: Write a personal mission statement, and use it as a guide to set goals. Ask if each goal or activity moves you closer to achieving your mission. If it doesn’t, eliminate it. Periodically review and revise your mission statement.
Backwards Planning: A planning strategy that works from the goal back to your next action. Start with the end goal in mind. What do you have to have in place to accomplish it? OK, now what do you have to have in place to accomplish what you have to have in place to accomplish your end goal? And what do you have to have in place to accomplish that? And so on, back to something you already have in place and/or can put in place immediately. That’s your next action.
Tune Out: Create a personal privacy zone by wearing headphones. People are much more hesitant to interrupt someone wearing headphones. Note: actually listening to music through your headphones is optional — nobody knows but you.
Write It Down: Don’t rely on your memory as your system. Write down the things you need to do, your schedule, anything you might need to refer to, and every passing thought so you can relax, knowing you won’t forget. Use your brain for thinking, use paper or your computer for keeping track of stuff.
Gap Time: The little blocks of time we have during the day while waiting for the bus, standing in line, waiting for a meeting to start, etc. Have a list of small, 5-minute tasks that you can do in these moments, or carry something to read or work on to make the most of these spare minutes.
Monotasking: We like to think of ourselves as great multitaskers, but we aren’t. What we do when we multitask is devote tiny slices of time to several tasks in rapid succession. Since it takes more than a few minutes (research suggests as long as 20) to really get into a task, we end up working worse and more slowly than if we devoted longer blocks of time to each task, worked until it was done, and moved on to the next one.
Habits : Habits are as much about the way we see and respond to the world as about the actions we routinely take. Examine your own habits and ask what they say about your relation to the world — and what would have to change to create a worldview in which your goals were attainable.
Triggers: Place meaningful reminders around you to help you remember, as well as to help create better habits. For example, put the books you need to take back to the library in front of the door, so you can’t leave the house without seeing them and remembering they need to go back.
Unclutter: Clutter is anything that’s out of place and in the way. IT’s not necessarily neatness — someone can have a rigorously neat workspace and not be able to get anything done. It’s being able to access what you need, when you need it, without breaking the flow of your work to find it. Figure out what is “clutter” in your working and living spaces, and fix that.
Visualize: Imagine yourself having accomplished your goals. What is your life like? Are you who you want to be? If not, rethink your goals. If so, then visualize yourself taking the steps you need to take to get there. You’ve got yourself a plan; write it down and do it.
Tickler File: A set of 43 folders, labeled 1 – 31 and January – December, used to remind us of tasks we need to do on a specific day. For instance, if you have a trip on March 23rd, you’d put your itinerary, tickets, and other material in the “March” folder. At the start of each month, you move the previous month’s folder to the back. On March 1st, you’d transfer your travel information into the “23″ folder. Each day, you move the previous day’s folder to the back. On the 23rd, the “23″ folder will be at the front, and everything you need that day will be there for you.
ToDon’t List: A list of things not to do — useful for keeping track of habits that lead you to be unproductive, like playing online flash games.
Templates: Create templates for repetitive tasks, like letters, customer reply emails, blog posts, etc.
Checklists: When planning any big task, make a checklist so you don’t forget the steps while in the busy middle part of doing it. Keep your checklists so you can use them next time you have to do the same task.
No: Learning to say “no” — to new commitments, to interruptions, to anything — is one of the most valuable skills you can develop to keep you focused on your own commitments and give you time to work on them.
Unschedule: Schedule all your fun activities and personal life stuff (the stuff you want to do) first. Fill in whatever time’s left over with uninterrupted blocks of work. Write those into your schedule after you’ve completed them. Reward yourself after every block of quality, focused work.
Purge: Regularly go through your existing commitments and get rid of anything that is either not helping you advance your own goals or is a regular “sink” of time or energy.
One Bucket: Minimize the places you collect new inputs in your life, your “buckets”. Ideally have one “bucket” where everything goes. Lots of people experience an incredible sense of relief when everything they need to think about is collected in one place in front of them, no matter how big the pile.
50-30-20: Spend 50% of your working day on tasks that advance your long-term, life goals, spend 30% on tasks that advance your middle-term (2-years or so) goals, and the remaining 20% on things that affect only the next 90 days or so.
Timer: Tell yourself you will work on a project or task, and only that project or task, for a set amount of time. Set a timer (use a kitchen timer, or use a countdown timer on your computer), and plug away at your work. When the timer goes off, you’re done — move on to the next project or task.
Do Your Worst: Give yourself permission to suck. Relieve the pressure of needing to achieve perfection in every task on the first run. Promise yourself you’ll go back and fix any problems later, but for now, just run wild.
Make an Appointment with Yourself: Schedule time every week or so just for you. Consider the state of your life: what’s working? What isn’t working? what mistakes are you making? what could you change? Give yourself a chance to get to know you.
[This space left intentionally blank]: This is a big list, sure, but it’s not an exhaustive one. The last space is left for you to fill in. What works for you? What would you like to share with the rest of the lifehack.org community? Let us know in the comments — or write your own list and link back to us!

Time & Task Management Resources

Refer and source : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Getting_Things_Done

Action management system by David Allen

Getting Things Done (GTD) is a method / procedure created by productivity consultant David Allen and described in the book Getting Things Done.
The Getting Things Done method rests on the idea that a person needs to move tasks out of the mind by recording them externally, so the mind is free from the job of remembering the tasks that need to be completed. One can concentrate on performing the tasks, instead of remembering.

task priorities play a central role. The Allen approach uses two key elements — control and perspective. He proposes a workflow process to control over all the tasks and commitments that one needs or wants to get done. There are “6 different levels of focus” to provide a useful perspective.
A weekly review is done on different levels, and suggests that the perspective gained from these reviews should drive one’s priorities. This in turn determine the priority of the individual tasks and commitments gathered during the workflow process. During a weekly review, determine the context for the tasks and puts them on the appropriate lists. An example of grouping together similar tasks would be making a list of outstanding telephone calls, or the tasks / errands to perform while downtown. Context lists can be defined by the set of tools available or by the presence of individuals or groups for whom one has items to discuss or present.

GTD is based on storing, tracking and retrieving the information related to the things that need to get done. Mental blocks we encounter are caused by insufficient ‘front-end’ planning. This means thinking in advance, generating a series of actions which can later be undertaken without further planning. The human brain’s “reminder system” is inefficient and seldom reminds us of what we need to do at the time and place when we can do it. Consequently, the “next actions” stored by context in the “trusted system” act as an external support which ensures that we are presented with the right reminders at the right time. GTD relies on external memories, it can be seen as an application of the theories of distributed cognition or the extended mind
In 2005, Wired called GTD “A new cult for the info age”, describing the enthusiasm for this methodology among information technology and knowledge workers as a kind of cult following. Allen’s ideas have also been popularized through the Internet, especially via blogs such as Lifehacker, 43 Folders, and The Simple Dollar.
In 2005, Ben Hammersley interviewed David Allen for The Guardian, with an article called “Meet the man who can bring order to your universe”, saying “For me, as with the hundreds of thousands around the world who press the book into their friends’ hands with fire in their eyes, Allen’s ideas are nothing short of life-changing”.
In 2007, Time Magazine called Getting Things Done the self-help business book of its time.
In 2007, Wired ran another article about GTD and Allen,[8] quoting him as saying “the workings of an automatic transmission are more complicated than a manual transmission… to simplify a complex event, you need a complex system”.
Software implementations

Whilst GTD material is careful to remain technologically neutral and advises people to start with a paper-based system, many task management tools claim to be GTD compliant.[10]
The following software is designed or useful for this purpose.
Remember The Milk
Emacs Org-mode
See also

Life hack http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_hack

Pomodoro Technique http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pomodoro_Technique

Taskwarrior http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taskwarrior

Human multitasking http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_multitasking

Pomodoro Technique

The Pomodoro Technique is a time management method developed by Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980s.
The technique uses a timer to break down periods of work into 25-minute intervals called ‘Pomodoros’
(from the Italian word for ‘tomatoes’) separated by breaks.

Closely related to concepts such as timeboxing and iterative and incremental development used in software design, the method has been adopted in pair programming contexts.

The method is based on the idea that frequent breaks can improve mental agility.
There are five basic steps to implementing the technique:
decide on the task to be done
set the pomodoro (timer) to 25 minutes
work on the task until the timer rings; record with an x
take a short break (5 minutes)
every four “pomodoros” take a longer break (15–20 minutes)
Underlying principles

The stages of planning, tracking, recording, processing and visualizing are fundamental to the technique.
In the planning phase tasks are prioritized by recording them in a “To Do Today” list.

This enables users to estimate the effort tasks require. As “pomodoros” are completed, they are recorded, adding to a sense of accomplishment and providing raw data for subsequent self-observation and improvement.

For the purposes of the technique “pomodoro” refers to an indivisible 25-minute period of time. After task completion, any time remaining in the “pomodoro” is devoted to overlearning.

Regular breaks are taken, aiding assimilation. A short (3-5 minute) rest separates consecutive “pomodoro”. Four “pomodoro” form a set. A longer (15-30 minute) rest is taken between sets.

An essential aim of the technique is to reduce the impact of internal and external interruptions on focus and flow.

A “pomodoro” is indivisible. When interrupted during a “pomodoro” either the other activity must be recorded and postponed (inform – negotiate – schedule – call back) or the “pomodoro” must be abandoned.
The creator and others encourage a low-tech approach using a mechanical timer, paper and pencil.

The physical act of winding up the timer confirms the user’s determination to start the task; ticking externalises desire to complete the task; ringing announces a break.

Flow and focus become associated with these physical stimuli.
Nonetheless, the technique inspired software applications for a variety of platforms, perhaps because of the technique’s following amongst software developers.


The Pomodoro Technique is named after the tomato-shaped kitchen timer that was first used by technique creator Francesco Cirillo when he was a university student (pomodoro is Italian for tomato).

time management:2

turning back time

Step 1:
Make a liste of all the tasks you have to do. Don’t think about importance and timelines right now, just do some brainstorming.
Step 2:
Sort your tasks:
Assign priorites by using colors
Categorize them using flags e.g. use the “Stop” sign to show that something has to be done immediatly or use the clock for appointments
you can use xLinks for crossreferences
Most important: Decide when to do it.

I usually have for each weekday the (grey) appointments on top, then the very urgent (red) issues and finally the other action items scheduled for this day.

You can also have a “daily” branch, which might contain things which have to be done every day. Or it could contain things which stay in this branch until you have done them. It can easily be moved to the next day, once your day comes to an end.
Now you can always have the current weekday on top of your week, just move the days up and down.
Usually the “week” branch will get quite big. To keep the overview you should always have the current day on top of this week branch and move the visible part of the map, so that you can overview your current day.
Have a look at the “birthday” list to see how you can copy birthdays into your week.
There exist various other approaches to manage your time e.g. by categorizing tasks into A, B, C, D. You could also use this scheme in a map:
| Urgent | Not urgent
you have to do it | A | B
others can do it | C | D

Usually D-tasks go directly down the drain while A-stuff should be done immediatly.

Time Management Tips

Time is valuable and we often take it for granted. We either have too much or too little. Time is something to be respected and used wisely


1. Think through the task you ar about to undertake before you even begin it.
2. Don’t take on too many tasks at the same time.
3. Finish one project before starting on a new one.
4. Always strive to finish everything you start.
5. Streamline your paperwork so that you don’t waste time on needless duplications.
6. Ask for help. Delegate tasks rather than doing everything yourself.
7. Set aside uninterrupted time to complete a project so that you can avoid distractions.
8. Pay attention to instructions and conversations so that you get the details right from the first time.
9. Before you run an errand, make sure the items you are going for are ready.
10. Schedule your appointments during the morning hours so that you become more organized.
11. Maintain a clutter free home and workspace so that you don’t waste time looking for misplaced items.
12. Pick out your outfit for the next morning and have everything ready so that you don’t waste your time in the morning.

Time Management 1

Time management

Time - The Virtual Matrix !

Sources 1.
Time management is the act or process of exercising conscious control over the amount of time spent on specific activities,
especially to increase efficiency or
productivity. Time management may be aided by a range of skills, tools, and techniques used to manage time when accomplishing specific tasks, projects and goals. This set encompasses a wide scope
of activities, and these include planning, allocating, setting goals, delegation,analysis of time spent, monitoring, organizing, scheduling, and prioritizing.

Initially, time management referred to just business or work activities, but eventually
the term broadened to include personal activities as well. A time management system is a designed combination of processes, tools, techniques, and methods.

Usually time management is a necessity in any project development as it determines
the project completion time and scope.
1 Categorization
2 Time management and related
2.1 Conceptual Effect on Labor
3 Personal Time Management
3.1 Task list
3.1.1 Task list organization
3.2 Software applications
3.3 Attention Deficit Disorder
3.3.1 Caveats Dwelling on the lists Rigid adherence
4 Techniques for setting priorities 4.1 ABC analysis
4.2 Pareto analysis
4.3 The ‘Eisenhower’ Method
4.4 POSEC method
5 References
6 Further reading
7 links


Organize !

Stephen R. Covey has offered a categorization scheme for the hundreds of time management approaches that they reviewed: First generation:
Reminders based on clocks and watches, but with computer implementation possible;can be used to alert a person when a
task is to be done.
Second generation:
Planning and preparation based on calendar and appointment books; includes setting goals.
Third generation: Planning,
prioritizing, controlling (using a
personal organizer, other paper-
based objects, or computer or PDA-
based systems) activities on a daily
basis. This approach implies spending some time in clarifying values and priorities. Fourth generation: Being efficient and
proactive using any of the above tools;places goals and roles as the
controlling element of the system and favors importance over urgency.
Time management literature can be paraphrased as follows:
“Get Organized” – paperwork and task triage
“Protect Your Time” – insulate, isolate,delegate.
“Set gravitational goals” – that attract actions automatically
“Achieve through Goal management
Goal Focus” – motivational emphasis ”
Work in Priority Order” – set goals and prioritize
“Use Magical Tools to Get More Out of Your Time” – depends on when
“Master the Skills of Time
“Go with the Flow” – natural rhythms, Eastern philosophy
“Recover from Bad Time Habits” – recovery from underlying psychological problems, e.g. procrastination.
More unconventional time usage
techniques, such as those discussed in “Where Did Time Fly,” include concepts that can be paraphrased as “Less is More,”
which de-emphasizes the importance of
squeezing every minute of your time, as suggested in traditional time management schemes. In recent years, several authors have
discussed time management as applied to the issue of digital information overload, in particular, Tim Ferriss with “The 4 hour workweek”, and Stefania Lucchetti with “The Principle of Relevance”
Time management and related concepts.
Time management has been considered as subsets of different concepts such as: Project management.
Time Management can be considered as a project management subset and is
more commonly known as project planning and project scheduling. Time Management has also been identified as one of the core functions identified in project management.

Attention management:
Attention Management relates to the management of cognitive resources, and in particular the time that humans allocate their mind (and organizations
the minds of their employees) to
conduct some activities.
Personal knowledge management: see below (Personal time
management). Conceptual Effect on Labor Professor Stephen Smith, of BYUI, is among recent sociologists that have shown that
the way workers view time is connected to social issues such as the institution of family, gender roles, and the amount of labor by the individual.
Personal Time Management.
Time management strategies are often associated with the recommendation to set personal goals. These goals are recorded
and may be broken down into a project, an action plan, or a simple task list. For individual tasks or for goals, an importance rating may be established, deadlines may
be set, and priorities assigned.

This process results in a plan with a task list or a schedule or calendar of activities. Authors may recommend a daily, weekly, monthly or other planning periods associated with different scope of planning or review. Thisis done in various ways, as follows.
Time management also covers how to eliminate tasks that don’t provide the individual or organization value.
Task list A task list (also to-do list or things-to-do) is a list of tasks to be completed, such as chores or steps toward completing a
project. It is an inventory tool which serves as an alternative or supplement to memory. Task lists are used in self-management, grocery lists, business management, project management, and software development. It may involve more than one list. When one of the items on a task list is
accomplished, the task is checked or crossed off. The traditional method is to write these on a piece of paper with a pen or pencil, usually on a note pad or clip- board.

Writer Julie Morgenstern suggests “do’s
and don’ts” of time management that include: Map out everything that is important, by making a task list Create “an oasis of time” for one to control Say “No” Set priorities Don’t drop everything Don’t think a critical task will get done in spare time.
Numerous digital equivalents are now available, including PIM (Personal information management) applications and
most PDAs.
There are also several web- based task list applications, many of which are free.
Task list organization
Task lists are often tiered. The simplest tiered system includes a general to-do list (or task-holding file) to record all the tasks
the person needs to accomplish, and a daily to-do list which is created each day by
transferring tasks from the general to-do list.
Task lists are often prioritized: An early advocate of “ABC”
prioritization was Alan Lakein . In his system “A” items were the most important (“A-1” the most important within that group), “B” next most important, “C” least important.
A particular method of applying the ABC method assigns “A” to tasks to be done within a day, “B” a week, and “C” a month. To prioritize a daily task list, one either
records the tasks in the order of
highest priority, or assigns them a number after they are listed (“1” for highest priority, “2” for second
highest priority, etc.) which indicates in which order to execute the tasks. The latter method is generally faster, allowing the tasks to be recorded more quickly.
A completely different approach which argues against prioritising altogether was put forward by British author Mark Forster in his book “Do It Tomorrow and Other Secrets of Time
This is based on the idea of operating “closed” to-do lists,
instead of the traditional “open” to-do list. He argues that the traditional never-ending to-do lists virtually guarantees that some of your work will be left undone. This approach advocates getting all your work done, every day, and if you are unable to achieve it helps you diagnose where you are going wrong and what needs to change.Software applications
Modern task list applications may have built-in task hierarchy (tasks are composed of subtasks which again may contain subtasks), may support multiple methods of filtering and ordering the list of
tasks, and may allow one to associate arbitrarily long notes for each task. In contrast to the concept of allowing the
person to use multiple filtering methods, atleast one new software pr oduct
additionally contains a mode where the software will attempt to dynamically determine the best tasks for any given moment. Many of the software products for time
management support multiple users. It allows the person to give tasks to other users and use the software for communication. In law firms, law practice management software may also assist in time management. Task list applications may be thought of as lightweight personal information manager or project management software.

Attention Deficit Disorder Excessive and chronic inability to manage time effectively may be a result of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD).
Diagnostic criteria include: A sense of underachievement, difficulty getting organized, trouble getting
started, many projects going
simultaneously and trouble with follow- through.

Prefrontal cortex: The prefrontal cortex is the most recently evolved
part of the brain. It controls the
functions of attention span, impulse
control, organization, learning from
experience and self-monitoring,
among others. Some authors argue that changing the way the prefrontalcortex works is possible and offers a solution.

Caveats Dwelling on the lists According to Sandberg,task lists “aren’t the key to productivity [that] they’re cracked up to be”. He reports an estimated “30% of listers spend more time managing their lists than[they do] completing what’s on the m”. This could be caused by procrastination by prolonging the planning activity. This is akin to analysis paralysis. As with any activity, there’s a point of diminishing returns. Rigid adherence Hendrickson asserts that rigid adherence to task lists can create a”tyranny of the to-do list” that forces one to “waste time on unimportant activities”.
Again, the point of diminishing returns applies here too, but toward the size of the task. Some level of detail must be taken for granted for a task system
to work. Rather than put “clean the
kitchen”, “clean the bedroom”, and
“clean the bathroom”, it is more efficient to put “housekeeping” and
save time spent writing and reduce the system’s administrative load (each task entered into the system generates a cost in time and effort to manage it, aside from the execution of the task). The risk of consolidating tasks, however, is that “housekeeping” in this example may proveoverwhelming or nebulously defined, which will either increase the risk of
procrastination, or a mismanaged project. Listing routine tasks wastes time. If you are in the habit of brushing your teeth every day, then there is no reason to put it down on the task list.!
The same goes for getting out of bed, fixing meals, etc. If you need to track routine tasks, then a standard list or chart may be useful, to avoid the procedure of manually listing these items over and over.
To remain flexible, a task system must allow for disaster. A disaster occurs constantly whether it is personal or business-related. A company must have a cushion of time ready for a disaster. Even if it is a small disaster, if no one made time for this situation, it can blow up bigger, causing the company to bankruptcy just because of poor time management.
To avoid getting stuck in a wasteful
pattern, the task system should also include regular (monthly, semi-annual,and annual) planning and system-evaluation sessions, to weed out inefficiencies and ensure the user is headed in the direction he or she truly desires.
If some time is not regularly spent on achieving long-range goals, the
individual may get stuck in a perpetual holding pattern on short-term plans, like staying at a particular job much longer than originally planned.
Techniques for setting
There are several ways to set priorities. ABC analysis A technique that has been used in business
management for a long time is the
categorization of large data into groups.
These groups are often marked A, B, and C
—hence the name. Activities are ranked upon these general criteria: A – Tasks that are perceived as being urgent and important, B – Tasks that are important but not urgent, C – Tasks that are neither urgent nor important. Each group is then rank-ordered in
priority. To further refine priority, some individuals choose to then force-rank all “B” items as either “A” or “C”. ABC analysis
can incorporate more than three groups. ABC analysis is frequently combined with Pareto analysis. Pareto analysis
This is the idea that 80% of tasks can be completed in 20% of the disposable time. The remaining 20% of tasks will take up 80% of the time. This principle is used to
sort tasks into two parts. According to this form of Pareto analysis it is recommended that tasks that fall into the first category be assigned a higher priority. The 80-20-rule can also be applied to increase productivity: it is assumed that
80% of the productivity can be achieved by doing 20% of the tasks. Similarly, 80% ofresults can be attributed to 20% of activity.
If productivity is the aim of time management, then these tasks should be prioritized higher. It depends on the method adopted to
complete the task. There is always a simpler and easy way to complete the task. If one uses a complex way, it will be time
consuming. So, one should always try to find out the alternate ways to complete each task.

The Eisenhower Method:
A basic “Eisenhower box” to help
evaluate urgency and importance.
Items may be placed at more precise points within each quadrant.
All tasks are evaluated using the criteria important/unimportant and urgent/not urgent and put in according quadrants.
Tasks in unimportant/not urgent are dropped, tasks in important/urgent are done immediately and personally, tasks in unimportant/urgent are delegated and
tasks in important/not urgent get an end date and are done personally. This method
is said to have been used by US President Dwight D. Eisenhower, and is outlined in a quote attributed to him: What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.
POSEC method
POSEC is an acronym for Prioritize by Organizing, Streamlining, Economizing and Contributing. The method dictates a template which
emphasizes an average individual’s
immediate sense of emotional and
monetary security. It suggests that by attending to one’s personal responsibilities first, an individual is better positioned to shoulder collective responsibilities. Inherent in the acronym is a hierarchy of
self-realization which mirrors Abraham Maslow’s “Hierarchy of needs”.
1. Prioritize – Your time and define your life by goals.
2. Organizing – Things you have to accomplish regularly to be
successful. (Family and Finances)
3. Streamlining – Things you may not like to do, but must do. (Work
and Chores)
4. Economizing – Things you should do or may even like to do, but
they’re not pressingly urgent.
(Pastimes and Socializing)
5. Contributing – By paying attention to the few remaining things that make a difference. (Social Obligations).

(this Series of Task Management shall continue ….for, ”Organize” is a Key Concept, requiring pracrical basics)