Not too long ago we discussed Time Management for Creatives, sharing tips for getting more done in less time. But what we realized is that before you can actually manage your time, you need to understand exactly how you are spending it.
This sounds much easier than it actually is. You need to be honest with yourself; it takes a lot of self-awareness, and some courage really. You may be surprised what you learn.
Here are 4 Steps for Improving How You Spend Your Time
- Conduct an experiment: Ask yourself how long you usually take to do a simple task, like taking a shower. Then do it and time yourself. You will be surprised how much longer things take than you expected.
- Keep a time log: Simply jot down everything you do, and how long it takes. Do this for a day or so. It will take a bit of effort, and you need to be honest with yourself. If it takes you 20 minutes to roll out of bed, jot that down. If you chat with a few friends for 15 or 20 minutes during the day, jot that down. Again, you only need to do this for a day or so. Don’t berate yourself because of what you find. Just use it to fit in the things you want and need to do.
- Realize the current situation: You are most likely using up all the time you have. Your day is jam packed with designing, social media, conducting business, eating, brainstorming, and a personal life. If you want to add to your current schedule something like time for working out, or anything else, you need to look at your time log and determine what you will eliminate.
- Think of time like a closet: Imagine you have that closet completely jammed packed with shoes, clothing, bags, belts, and all the other fashion essentials you cannot part with. What happens when you buy something new? Every time you open that closet, something falls out. There’s no way to shove in anything else. You need to get rid of something. It’s the same with time. There are only so many hours in the day. Something has to give.
Fun (and annoying) fact: Research shows that we spend about four years of our lives searching for lost objects.
No matter what you are doing with the time, you are spending it. And every minute spent on one thing is making it impossible to do another. If you want to grow your fashion business, you have to either delegate some tasks or simply eliminate them. Don’t wait too long to conduct the experiment with your current schedule, so you can focus on what you really love.