Jul 13 2017
How much time are you wasting?

We’re all guilty of wasting time, both at work and in our personal lives, but most of us like to think that we only waste a few minutes a day; however, the reality is quite different! From having a chat by the water cooler, to scrolling through Facebook, there are loads of distractions throughout the day.

What is stealing your time?

The average worker is faced with 56 interruptions a day, which can result in a large amount of time not working. These interruptions come from a range of sources, such as chatty colleagues, checking your phone, and even hunger. The time you then have to spend recovering from distractions makes things even worse, and before you know it it’s time to go home!

In the office you’ll get around 300 emails a week, which results in a lot of time reading, replying, deleting, and unsubscribing. After dealing with incoming mail, it takes an average of 16 minutes to refocus. This means that if you limit yourself to dealing with emails just four times a day (and we all know that we do it a lot more than that!) you’ll have wasted over an hour of your day.

Now onto a topic that gets some people really riled up, meetings. Around 50% of all meetings are deemed a waste of time by those attending, and 91% of people day dream during the meeting. Is that really the best way to spend your day?

So now we’ve realised that in the office we can be a bit lax with our time management, but what about home life? Well, we’re sorry to say that there’s a lot of time wasted there too! The average person in the UK spends over two hours a day online on their smartphone – that doesn’t even include texts and calls! You’ll also spend an average of 16 minutes a day picking an outfit, which adds up to a whole year of your lifetime.

Reclaiming your time

The good news is that it isn’t too late to take charge of your time. You can easily learn how to eliminate the time wasters and have a plan for working efficiently, and effectively.

1.Recognise where you need to improve

In order to become a time management whizz, you need to know exactly what to work on. This quiz allows you to see what you’re good at, and what you need a bit of help with. You should also try keeping a diary for a week, keeping note of all your activities and how much time you spend on them. At the end of the week you may be surprised with what is eating up your time.

2.Learn how to prioritise

We’re all guilty of procrastinating when faced with a large, important task. The little jobs get done, your desk is tidier than it has ever been, but that report hasn’t been touched. Having a to-do list is really handy, but it can be even more useful to highlight the jobs that are important and focus on them.

3.Get expert advice

If you’re really struggling, or have a team member that could do with a bit of support and guidance, then take a look at our two Time management courses. We have one designed to help managers make the most of everyday, and one filled with practical tips for administrators.

For more information on our Time management courses, call us on 020 7490 3030 or email [email protected]

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