Time Management

Today is the last day of the Summer season in Australia. And it’s also the last day of a season of more than ten years of my life … so it’s got me thinking about times and seasons.

When God the Son talks to God the Father we get to listen in on how the divine leaders of the universe think and what issues concern them. In John 17:1 we see Jesus beginning the conversation with “Father, the hour has come….”. Timing is so important!

Time is mentioned throughout the Scripture. Indeed, the first thing God communicates is an answer to the question “When?” … In the beginning. If you read Scripture with the question “When?” in mind, you might be surprised just how often the management of time is an issue addressed by the biblical writers.

I’ve been reminded recently of two of the most productive ways of handling your time and tasks so that you’re not squandering your profits – whether you use online profit systems or good old fashioned ones.

1. Avoid To Do Lists

I was recently put on the spot, in front of a group of people, to organise a group outing. Whilst, I would have preferred to be asked in private so I could either accept or decline without embarrassing myself or my leader, I accepted. And completed the task, in front of the group, within just one minute.

This reminded me that if you are tasked with something that isn’t on your To Do List and you can take action straight away, do it now (so it never makes it on to your list). You’re more likely to procrastinate if it is someone else’s idea and you don’t “own” it. People often spend a lot of time managing their To Do List (e.g. transferring a simple item over many days or even weeks), rather than doing their To Do List. You’ll save all of that time, and mental stress, if you avoid putting it on your To Do List and just do it now!

Also, if someone gives you their task (who you think really had the time and resources to do it themselves), doing it while they’re still with you, lets them see how quick and easy it is, too – which might inspire them to do it themselves rather than delegate next time. Hopefully, that will help keep it off your To Do List forever.

#ExecuteQuickly

2. Make Plans Once

Having organised the event, at their request, with the input and agreement of everyone in the group, within a minute, a week later the leader then changed the plans.

If you’ve made a plan with someone, let alone a whole group of people, rescheduling is a nightmare. Firstly, even if there are no other impacts, you are adding the extra time to communicate the new details. People are often tightly scheduled these days, and moving your agreed time can mean every other thing in their day needs to be adjusted. Whilst changing details of date, time or venue, may possibly be marginally better for you, the ripple effect for multiple other people can waste literally countless hours of time and profits – and create stress for multiple people.

When leaders say “Follow me” and change course midway, it weakens the ability of participants to trust them next time they want followers to agree to their schedule items (especially if leaders don’t clearly communicate what the benefits of the change were). And it shows a lack of respect for the time of others.

Whilst it only took me another minute to call the venue and cancel the booking, I hate doing it. As a small business owner myself, I know that everything from staffing to cashflow planning can change with a cancelled booking. And, frankly, I don’t need the reputation of being someone whose word is fickle and cannot be relied on.

Think very, very carefully before you are tempted to reschedule.

#RescheduleRarely

Following these two simple time management tips will help you profit not just today, but they will set you up with personal habits and a reputation for being someone who can deliver, everyday.

Leave a comment and let me know what time management insights you have found in Scripture or in practice.

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