Effective and efficient time management. Tips and recommendations.

Date: 20/01/2024 Author: Antonio H.

Effective and efficient time management. Tips and recommendations.


Gestión eficaz del tiempo Viejo reloj
Not managing time well can have consequences in different areas of our lives:
  • In our health: stress or anxiety is a risk factor for the onset of some diseases, cardiovascular or digestive disorders. It also affects our mental health and can lead to anxiety disorders, addictions, depression, etc. The absence of breaks (which should be included in the time planning) is one of the most common causes of the lack of time having an impact on health.
  • In our work: reduced performance, work stress, burnout, the inability to take on interesting tasks because we do not have time for them, or the loss of objectives.
  • In our personal life: friends, partner, family...

On the other hand, the causes of poor time management can be:

  • Personal attitude
  • Setting overly ambitious goals that consume a large amount of time.
  • Poor allocation of time to tasks.
  • Irregularity in following the steps to achieve a goal.
  • Not knowing how to say "no" or not knowing how to delegate tasks.
  • Lack of clear objectives or not having them correctly defined.
  • Lack of priorities that leads us to maintain an intense but uncontrolled activity.

General recommendations and tips.

    • Set objectives that mark the path to follow: do not get lost and wander around aimlessly, this wears you down enormously. For objectives to be useful, they must be measurable, achievable, realistic, specific and adjustable.
    • Over the course of a few days, make a study of how we spend our time: record everything we do and the time we spend on it. In this way we will find out if it is possible to optimise our time and increase our performance.
    • Analyse repetitive tasks or actions to see if they can be optimised or even eliminated. Identify bottlenecks.
    • Use the agenda and to-do lists: improvising is not bad, but it is not the best way to organise your time. Try to plan your weeks including time for contingencies and rest.
  • Delegate tasks: sometimes you can't do everything. If possible, we should rely on people who offer their help or who we believe can take care of what we do not absolutely have to do ourselves.
  • Giving written instructions to delegated staff will avoid having to repeat them.
  • Learn to say no: so that we do not find ourselves attending to the tasks of others, less relevant, and so that we can strive for what is important (that which is directed towards our objectives) and not so much for what is urgent.
  • Leave demands and perfectionism for times when we are more available and calm. We have to do our best, but always within the time available.
  • Try not to be distracted by things that can be done at another time or that, if we think about it, are not so important and hinder us from achieving our objectives.
  • Establish mechanisms to manage possible "disturbances" in time that may appear.
  • Set aside time for contingencies and changes.
  • Plan: manage the planning of all professional and personal activities.
  • Establish realistic schedules for work and other activities, including leisure and extra-work activities in general.
  • Develop the ability to be flexible in the modification of planning.
  • Organise documents, the workplace, tools, clothes, tools, etc. correctly.
  • From a purely work-related point of view, the better worker is not the one who dedicates more hours to work, but the one who does more useful things in the same hours (PRODUCTIVITY).

As we have indicated above, it is highly advisable to analyse the day to try to identify the different periods of time into which we can divide it according to the level of activity, level of calm and our own capacities. Some will be caused or conditioned by external agents such as periods of greater activity due to visits, calls, etc. or periods of greater calm due to the absence of these. In other cases, they will be caused or conditioned by internal agents such as staff timetables or our own work capacity.

Therefore, in order to distribute activities and adapt our capacities to different periods of time, we should also analyse what our own personal capacities are, our response at each moment of the day. Our energy peaks and troughs, and our response to different circumstances.

Once the tasks have been identified and classified, establishing their importance, urgency and the need for resources and time to be spent on each of them, we can organise the time available according to the periods of activity, our own capacities and with the help of tools such as the task list and the Eisenhower matrix.

Lista de tareas

Effective time management essentially consists of acquiring the necessary skills and abilities to plan time properly, with the aim of improving our efficiency in the different areas of our lives (work, family, social, personal, etc.).


Recommended article: Effective and efficient time management. Eisenhower Matrix



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