This post is going to be a bit different. Every once in a while I like to write a post that makes a reference to the season of the year. We are around the time of year where people like to be spooked and scared, and several people celebrate Halloween. While I'm personally no fan of horror movies; however, I have seen several "horror" time management situations in my life. Just for fun, I'm going to list a few scenarios that will provide a reminder of time management and productivity gone wrong, and even so what happens when these things are absent. It can get quite scary when you don't have good time management or productivity in place, and can last much longer than a single day or month of the year. So be prepared to be spooked, and hopefully scared straight into better productivity methods!
Scenario #1. You are in school. You committed to be part of too many activities and have a ton of assignments to do. You did not plan ahead and barely looked at syllabus for each of your courses. Midterms are quickly approaching and you also have a paper due and a team presentation coming up after that. You understood that these assignments were due in a couple of weeks or even a month away so you were completely down with relaxing, hanging out with friends, and doing whatever else you could imagine other than studying. Now three of your midterms are next week and you just about did the assignments with out any studying. You are now forced to stay up most of each night and pretty much give up all of your activities that you enjoy because you have to keep your grades up. To add insult to injury, you have realize that your paper that you thought was due in two weeks on the 19th, is actually due tomorrow, on the 9th. Apparently, you made a typo.
Scenario #2. You are at a stressful jobs with tons of different things that need to be done and they need to be done now. Your to do list already has 100+ items on it and it is growing by the minute. It is a task in itself just determining the priorities for the next hour. There are tasks that come all different directions and you are so busy and you can't seem to get caught up. It is not only the quantity of the tasks, but also what you have to do to get things done. There is communication required in many different ways means with all kinds of emails and communications and it is very easy to track of where you are in each of the processes. You have tried all kinds of methods to get the job done the best you can, and you seem to be buried beneath and are not able to get out from under the mountain of work. On top of that you are doing something that you are not good at and don't enjoy. Someone else is more suited for this work than you are.
Scenario #3. You have plans with friends that you made several months ago and you committed to. You never made note of these plans therefore you completely forgot about them and got caught up with the rest of your busy life. Your more last minute friends invited you to do something on the same day. To make matters worse, what you committed to last minute is something you'd rather do than what you committed to months ago and it would definitely hurt the feelings of your friends you committed to the first time. You are also going to not look good to the new commitment either by double booking yourself. You have made this a habit and have double booked yourself several times and everyone you know is getting annoyed with this. You are now in a lose-lose situation.
So after reading these "spooky" scenarios, grab some candy and consider the source of the problem. The common thread in these scenarios is a failure to plan ahead and really account for your time and schedule. In the college scenario, there was no planning for each course our realizing how large the commitment to the activities would be. There was additional carelessness in planning regarding the courses and how much work was actually involved. There was even more carelessness in mistaking the date of the paper that was due. A lack of planning and carelessness is also involved in the job scenario. While there may be issues with management and maybe your boss is unreasonable and expects too much to be done, but it is your responsibility to understand what kind of job you are getting into at first and also on understanding the tasks that need to be completed before you commit to doing them. While I am talking about commitment, the whole problem in the social scenario is that you have a bad habit of over-committing yourself and saying yes too often. And again, carelessness plays a role in here. The painful situations can be avoided by these five quick take-a ways.
Always keep a schedule, even if it not that detailed, always have an awareness of what you have to do and when you have to do it
Plan ahead, never just live day to day and make plans haphazardly
Maintain priorities, and make sure you are doing what you need to be doing
Pay attention to what you are doing! Again, don't go through life haphazardly. Realize that what you do doesn't only impact you, but those around you whether it be your classmates, boss, co-workers, family, or friends
Take your life seriously, now not too seriously to the point that you get anxious or sick, but still enough so that you are true to yourself and true and honest to others. Commit to things that are the most authentic to you, and not to everything that you can think of.
I hope you enjoyed this different post and are enjoying the fall weather and the upcoming holiday season. If anything like me, you are probably having just as much a hard time as I am realizing that 2018 is already almost over! Please let me know your thoughts and any suggestions that you may have.