I’ve been way too philosophical of late: too much thinking- too much in my head. So today, we’re going to go all logic: Time Management.

What is time management?  Well, we’re going to go with my unsophisticated definition and say that it is how you manage your time- how you get the things you need to get done in a timely fashion (I know- I should write for Webster’s…)

Why is time management important?  Because we’re all busy.  We all have a billion things to get done, and about a half hour to get them done.  Plus- we want to have a little down time.  So we need to learn how to manage our time in order to get the necessities out of the way and leave time for the good stuff.

Someone recently wrote about the benefits of teens having part time jobs because it teaches them time management.  This is a totally true statement.  Except when its not.  How many of you with jobs are really good with time management?  I don’t see all your hands up.  Half of you are running away in terror.  The other half are proudly holding up their planners. Because we all know that time management is just another term for planning.

My teen daughter is a master of time management.  In fact, if a college application question were to ask what her superpower is, it would clearly be how to manage time and get things done.  She not only participates in clubs, she is also a leader in almost everything she does.  During the tennis season she does not get home from school until about 730 and them has to do hours of homework, on top of eating and showering.  During law competitions, she often spends about 20 hours a week just prepping for her role.  Add on top of this community service and tutoring job and practicing guitar and writing poetry and essays (which she does for relaxation) and friends….

As I’m telling you how wonderful my daughter is, I am aware that karma will probably wield its ugly head and she will go off the rails- but I am also pretty confident that that will not happen until January 5, 2019 after all college applications are in…

What are her secrets?

  1. She knows her limitations.  She knows exactly how much she is capable of doing.
  2. She knows how to say no.
  3. She knows that you can not do everything, so you must prioritize- take care of the must do first, then go in order of importance
  4. She breaks tasks down into manageable chunks- if she has a paper due in 10 days she set daily goals so that she is not rushing, and she makes the goal appropriate to the day (eg, if she has a match at a far court and knows she will not walk in the door till 830, she will not attempt to write 8 pages of something)
  5. When she has a project due in the future, she makes sure that it is completed a full day before it is due- she uses the night before to make sure there are no glaring errors- let me repeat- she does not wait till the night before to complete a project because she is a firm believer of Murphy’s Law
  6. If she’s running low on supplies (paper, ink, etc) she buys it – all it takes is one trip to the 24 hour staples at 1am to make sure you always have ink in the house
  7. She keeps a calendar.  She writes down what steps she needs to do on what days
  8. Every night before she goes to sleep she writes a new to do list for items due the next day, and adds things to it as the day progresses- she highlights the things that must be done
  9. Every night she checks her to do list to make sure that everything is completed, and what wasn’t done gets added to the next days list
  10. She packs all her things the night before (the one exception is her computer which must charge overnight- but as it’s the only thing she has to add to her bag so it’s rote by now)
  11. She has google drive folders for all her clubs and classes.  She makes sure everything goes into the correct folder.
  12. She also has separate paper folders for all clubs and classes to keep track of all the paper that she still seems to have in a paperless society
  13. Her motto is “everything in moderation.”  She knows that if she goes out with friends on a Friday night, she needs to stay in Saturday night (usually- there are exceptions)
  14. She knows how long it will take to get certain tasks done.  If she’s not sure, she adds extra time. She also adds in commuting time- how long it will take to get somewhere.
  15. The first thing she does in the morning is check the weather and how mass transit is running- she needs to factor in delays that are beyond her control
  16. When she comes home from school she puts her phone on “Do Not Disturb” for two hours- she does not text, email or look at social media for at least two hours Monday through Thursday.  And- when she is at end of marking period, when everything is due, she takes Instagram and facebook off her phone entirely. Not snapchat- I mean really- let’s not get too crazy. Can I add that this is the absolute most important thing she does in order to have good time management?

I think I hit on the big things, the things that really help get her going.  Is she perfect? No.  Not even close.  Does she screw up?  Of course- she’s human.  But, by having a plan in place, her screw ups are not monumental- she is able to recover.

Does this work for everyone?  Probably not.  But if you never seem to have enough time, maybe you should at least consider setting up a plan.

47 thoughts on “Do You Have the Time

  1. Your post is a nice tribute to your daughter. It reminds me that truly you are the master of your destiny. I like how she gets off social media for 2 hours. I need to do that. Simple steps with a plan for working on my book in the morning.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Not going to lie. Props to your daughter. I struggle with time management and planning.I wasn’t always like this. For me, I think it’s parenthood and, especially parenthood with a child with a disability. It got to the point where, no matter what I planned, that plan would go completely off the rails because real world stepped in. It became easier and less stressful just not to plan. This isn’t as much of a thing for me now, as he started college last year. Now I am trying to break the habit of always being available.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Never be available!!!😉. I was not great at time management when I was younger (and I had a job) so my one job was to make sure my daughter just learned from the time she was little. It’s a practiced skill,which I don’t think people realize

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      1. I am like that for the most part with everyday stuff. Forgot your homework? Whoops. Sucks to be you. 😂😂😂 Some of the situations we were in though during that time weren’t moments I could just decide not to be available. It is what it is. He’s rocking college life and I have to call him to talk to him because he’s too busy to call me. 😂😂😂😂 He’s handling it all. So I know we did fine. Doesn’t change those years though.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yeah I know! But, the upside is he’s doing great!! That’s the job right, raise them so they don’t need us… (bittersweet, but better for them!!)

        Liked by 1 person

  3. She takes after mom. 🙂

    I remember distinctly when we were new parents that my husband pointed to his head when I asked how he can remember, correctly, all the shit we had to get done. I shook my head. I too have a good memory but the calendar was crucial, especially for family things, and a backup for when I was sleep deprived, or stressed, or consumed with pissedoffness… lol

    If I book dentist and tell him to show up it’s 95% sure he’ll show up. But then the kids got older, they had their own commitments, life got busier and more hectic and suddenly I noticed he started glancing at the posted calendar more (that was before I had the synced online family calendar). Now, he’s been trained to never ever do anything for himself or the family without first checking the updated online calendar. This is part of efficient time management because mistakes and no shows screw up too many things for too many people. I put everything in the calendar and don’t mind doing it, their responsibility is to check before saying yes for some commitment.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You need to make them responsible for their time!! And yeah, screwing up an appointment is an inconvenience to others…its about respecting others as well!! My husband still doesn’t check his calendar before he books things. I don’t know why anyone agrees to something without making sure you’re free

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  4. If only your daughter could bottle up some of that organization and sell it! I am HORRIBLE at Time Management in the past few years. I will attribute that to having good and bad days… I really need to find a better schedule and flow. My days go by so fast- sometimes I don’t feel ‘awake’ enough to do anything productive until noon and my mornings have been a waste! I have tried lists, bullet journals etc… but after a few days it always fizzles out.
    Great post! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks! I did not grow up with great time management skills (my mother is horrible with time management and multi tasking) so I vowed that I would teach my kid. And life does run a bit smoother…but as we know…stuff happens!!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Wow, I’m impressed! I get things done but my time management skills aren’t the best. I tend to get distracted and I’m a bit of a procrastinator. Fortunately I’m retired so I have more time to fit stuff in so life is good. Your daughter’s skills will get her very far in life.

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  6. Once upon a time I was the most organized girl on the block, but real life came along and somewhere along the way I drifted into a more relaxed approach to living. Your daughter will do great in college. She’s got it figured out.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Children are products of their environment. She has learned to be a planner because she must live with at least one planner. I am a planner. My daughters are becoming planners. The oldest shows more capabilities to plan than the younger one right now. My husband is not a planner. Except when it comes to his job. Everything else is my job to plan.

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  8. Holy crap! My head is spinning. She really has crap together. It makes me see how out of control my time is. Thanks for opening that box of worms. I was thinking about it while I was working about a half hour ago. Its definately something I need to change in my life. Good job to both you and your daughter. She definately takes after you in that area.

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