Do you have trouble meeting your personal goals? Even people who are very efficient on the job may struggle when they are off the clock. The same ideas that help you achieve efficiency in the office may not apply when you head home to do things for yourself.

Here are five ways that you can manage your own time to help you achieve those things that you want to do for you — and you alone.

Learn to Say No

There is only so much time in the day to get things done. When you are spending all of your time doing for others, that doesn’t leave a lot of time for yourself. Sometimes the best answer is that you simply don’t have time to get something done.

Learn to take on only those things you can handle. That way you aren’t rushing to complete tasks or taking shortcuts because you over promised and don’t want to under deliver.

Remove Distractions

Do you have the discipline to just let the phone ring or not respond to a text message? What about turning off the TV and turning up the tunes so you can focus on the task at hand?

When you intend to complete a task, sometimes the only way to do it is to block out all of the distractions and focus on what needs to be done. Don’t worry, that text message will still be there. If it is really important, someone will leave a voicemail.

Determine if it’s Really Worth Doing

There are a lot of demands on your time. You don’t want to waste time with things that simply aren’t worth doing. Before you start a task sit down and consider whether it really is worth spending the time on. Would your time be better spent doing something else?

If you find yourself answering yes to that last question, move on without looking back.

Time Management for Sleep

It is very tempting to sacrifice sleep in order to get things done. After all, you may believe you can manage on less than six to eight hours of sleep — some will go so far as to say no one has ever died from a lack of sleep.

Sleep deprivation can result in decreased efficiency. Even if you manage to caffeinate yourself to acceptable levels, that isn’t going to last forever. Take the time to get enough rest so that you have the energy and clarity of mind to handle your tasks.

Add in Underestimation

We all have the ability to underestimate how long something is going to take. Think about when someone asks how long it takes you to drive somewhere. You probably always answer 15 minutes or so if it is close, even if it’s really more like 20 or 25.

Figure that you are going to underestimate the time needed to complete something, and then adjust accordingly.

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