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Habit Management vs. Time Management

Published: September 27, 2016

Avid book readers are often on the hunt for a great new book to read. Nevertheless, our busy schedules often make it difficult for us to actually sit down and read the book that we were looking forward to reading. This is what most clients tell us. They have new leads but they have no time to peruse them, they may have some wonderful ideas to make some strategic changes at the heart of their operations but they are too busy to think about any of that. You might think that is a story of a few but unfortunately, being productive and leading a fulfilling life together is a skill that not many understand or are not willing to make an effort for.

Many techniques involved in time management are intuitive and most of the time, drastic changes can be brought upon by changing small habits that are sabotaging your own success. Most clients want to think about time as if it’s a resource that can be managed. Time is boundless, same for everyone as it happens. The most important thing to understand is that time management is basically choice management. We make a choice about how we want to spend every hour in a day and those choices define whether it will be a successful day or not.

Time management has often been directly related with success and increased productivity. However, a more holistic and comprehensive approach to time management can be studied and understood by designing an organizational structure that exists for the sole purpose of development and achievement of goals, regardless of the number of possibilities in your professional life. It has been outlined in Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, which highlights the 5 basic areas that effect productivity. Anyone who wants to amplify their productivity by a few notches can certainly study the pyramid and apply that knowledge for achieving goals and objectives.

Today, time management consists of physical organization, electronic organization, time management itself, activity/goal alignment and self-actualization in the professional life, also referred to as the realization of possibilities. To manage your time accordingly, all you need to do is plan, prioritize and perform to the apex of your abilities.

When we compare time management to habit management, we don’t find that much of a difference. As mentioned above and as illustrated by the research conducted by researchers at the Duke University, 40% of decisions that we make all day constitute as habits and they determine the quality of our life or our success level. If someone has a habit of checking their emails constantly throughout the day, they waste more time than people who are more productive throughout the day because they check their emails at the beginning and end of their day.

Managers promoting productive habits at work will surely increase the overall productivity of the team and the department. Goal setting can only take place when you make an effort to implement the exercises that can help them develop habits that can make their job easier or more productive. The best way to do that is to focus on the habit itself and not on the goal because, as a human being, it is much easier to focus on something we can control. Controlling a series of habits can translate directly into the actualization of goals in a time efficient manner, teaching workers the prerequisites of time management along the way.

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