Here are a few tips to help you manage yourself, your work and your time:

  • Take control of your email.
    Technology is a great servant but a terrible master. Turn off the notifications to allow you to be more focused on the task at hand and if possible only check your emails at designated times of the day.
  • Take a few minutes a day to clear your mind and refocus your thoughts.
    Taking time away from the computer, even for a few minutes, will keep you mentally fresh and focused.
  • Make the most of 'To-do' lists.
    Have a daily short list of 1-3 items that must be completed. Be realistic about whether those tasks can actually be accomplished.
  • Accept the fact that you won't finish everything in a day.
    As long as you believe you must, you will be frustrated and ineffective. The longer you remain in denial, the longer you will avoid making the tough decisions about your top priorities.
  • Too many priorities means no priorities.
    You cannot have many priorities – by definition. Priorities are those top few tasks that deserve attention next. If you have too many, you have none. You have to know your top few priorities at any time.
  • Eliminate unnecessary meetings.
    Be ruthless about protecting your time. If a meeting is truly not necessary, then say 'No'. Additionally, where possible, stop scheduling meetings back to back. Allow buffer time in case meetings run over time (they mostly do) and to ensure you're not wasting your time or others'.
  • Avoid multitasking.
    Do one thing at a time, do it well and complete it.
  • Look after your health!
    You are no good to anyone if you're not healthy.

Source: Melissa Watson, UBT Head Office, Sydney.