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A couple of years ago I attended a women’s retreat.

During the event, I met a lovely lady, who is now a very close friend of mine and stumbled onto the subject of time management. She said that when people say they don’t have time, its false. Surprised by her comment and before I could say anything she added we have the same amount of time as Bill Gates, Richard Branson and many others and look what they’ve achieved. From this, I decided to wake up early, 2 hours earlier – with great difficulty. Who was I kidding! Eventually, I did it and i can honestly say, 2 years on, my health and wellbeing has significantly improved in all areas and more.

Research has shown that allocating time to your health and wellbeing including exercise, sleep, diet has been shown to boost energy levels, clear the mind and improve both mood and behaviour helping you to be more focused to achieve a good work life balance. An essential aspect of health education and promotion.

Here are some of my practical top time management tips for you to try and see what works well for you.

1) ‘Do not disturb’ – if you have a case or report that is due or soon approaching deadline, have a sign, find a room and set phone and email accordingly to prevent interruptions or bring seen as available to take on more load. (wearing headphones at the desk, sadly doesn’t count)

2) Do a ‘To do list’ the night before or first thing in the morning. Most importantly do not forget to schedule this ‘schedule’ time in order to do this. This allows you to prioritise what needs to be done and when in terms of tasks or work related activity.

3) Invest in activities that are important for your growth and success. Attending courses and courses, spending quality time with like minded individuals is a great tool for managing your wellbeing, especially the interactive aspect.

4) Be organised. Create a filing system to save time. Although you might not feel that you are saving much time, these minutes eventually mount up  – a health investment for your wellbeing. Managing large client cases and caseloads, completing operational reports and working towards targets and deadlines can be daunting and overwhelming, which can lead to poor stress management. Continue to review your filing system and don’t be afraid to adjust as and when you need to.

5) Waiting…. at the bus stop, in a queue on a platform? Use this time, use these minutes. Listening to relaxing music or an audio book. Read a book, journal or article of interest, (Read my blogs:D). Exercise your body as well as you brain (Read my blogs:))

6) Have a private consultation with yourself, in other words ‘quiet time’. This can be going for a walk, sitting in a nearby park listening to calm relaxing music. Finding time to be still helps to reduce anxiety and reminds us that everything will come together in it’s own time.

7) Say ‘No’. If you can’t do it, just say, right? If only it was so easy. So how do we do it? Time management.  Once you have your to do list and the duration of how long each activity is likely to last, declining extra loads from others can become second nature leaving you ample time to focus and compete the tasks that you know you have to do.

8) Facebook, WhatsApp…. if it’s taking more of your time rather than adding to your time in terms of work productivity, allocate time aside during the day for a fixed period to check notifications. It’s so easy to check one, then the other and before you know it your on a website or making a phone call.

9) Sleep. Yes sleep is essential in health prevention for physical and mental health conditions. Ideally, adults should aim for on average 8 hours sleep. Sleep allows the brain and body to recharge and have enough energy for the following day reducing anxiety and stress and most importantly increase reliance on stimulants such as caffeine.

10) Plan for the following day ahead, the night or even week before. Deciding what to wear to work to what to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner are great ways to plan for success in achieving a happy holistic lifestyle.

Hope you find these tips useful…..and until next ‘time’ ….manage your time ‘wisely’

Coretta Edusei – Quantra Health