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Posts Tagged ‘wasting time’

It is difficult to track your time, especially when you have so many interruptions, telephone calls and meetings. How do you know how long you spent on a particular task without a quality tracker by your side? Technology is improving rapidly, and it is hard to know which tracker is best. Here we will run through some of the quality tracker apps for use within your NFP on the market today.

Toggl

If you are looking to track your time using a simple tool, then Toggl is highly recommended. You can opt for their basic package or upgrade to their pro package. With just one click of a button, you can start tracking. It even allows you to input your hours after the fact.

Hours

Hours allows you to do away with your timesheets and track your time as you go with real-time reports. It can be used on multiple devices giving you the freedom to switch between timers with one tap.

Paydirt

Paydirt is a great option for those who are always forgetting to set their timers. You can keep on top of your workload with the built-in timer and improve your productivity. It also provides a helpful overview of where you spend your time.

Timely

If you rely on calendars heavily to plan your day, then Timely can integrate seamlessly into your workflow. Highlight the project, start the timer and get down to work. It converts your schedule into your timer, quickly and smoothly.

Freckle

Rather than guesstimate where you spend the majority of your time, Freckle can help you narrow down those minutes and hours into useful charts and reports. It is particularly beneficial for those nonprofits wanting to streamline their processes and better their effectiveness.

Harvest

Spend less time tracking and more time doing with Harvest, an excellent app for those looking to track a variety of projects simultaneously. It also allows you to connect your favourite tools and track your expenses.

Top Tracker

TopTracker is a standalone app to help you track via timers, screenshots and webcam shots. It offers full productivity reports and can be used on all devices. And the best part, it’s free, making it a perfect choice for NFPs!

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Everyone has the right to choose what to do with their time, but we can all agree about one thing – it is certainly not enough for everything. Back in 2013, an ingenious project made use of 28,835 jelly beans (one for every day in 79 years) to show how the life of an average person looks and what we use it for. Simple calculations help the guys show the following important figures:

  • 23,360 days left after the first 15 years.
  • Sleeping: 8,477 days.
  • Eating, drinking and preparing food: 1,635 days.
  • Working: 3,202 days.
  • Commuting and moving around: 1,099 days.
  • Watching TV (arguably): 2,676 days.
  • Chores and household responsibilities: 1,567 days.
  • Taking care of our loved ones: 564 days.
  • Bathing, grooming, bathroom related activities: 671 days.
  • Community activities (taking classes, charities etc.): 720 days.

When you take all that out, you are left with 2,740 days. This is your time for doing what you love, what makes you happy, what you really want to do with your time. And that’s in case you know how to say ‘no.’ 2,740 days does not sound like a lot of time, does it? What you are going to do with it – the choice is entirely yours.

When realising the importance of saying ‘no’, you need to differentiate between your personal life and your business affairs. When it comes to your own private time, making the choice to say no should be much easier. In our lives, we all have those people who would always ask for favours, sacrifices, compromises, spending time on activities we don’t like or need. There are, of course, situations when we should say ‘yes’ – when we really want to help/participate. But when spending our time is obviously not worth it and everything in us screams no – that’s when you should be hard and decided. Say ‘no.’ If they persist, say ‘no.’ again. Soon enough, you will not be the target of unwanted invitations, requests and attention – and you will have the time all for yourself, your loved ones and what really matters in life!

If you are struggling to say ‘no’ to business requests, invitations and projects, you will need to train yourself into practical thinking. Do you have enough on your plate already? Yes? Then the answer to the next thing you will only waste time and efforts on should be ‘no.’ Do you actually want to participate in the project/meeting/event? Then say ‘no’, but include the possibility to be available next time. In order to be successful and to have time for what really matters for your business, you need to know your priorities. A good idea is to have a time rule – for example, give a reply after 24 hours. That will give you what you need to count the pros and cons, to evaluate the proposition and to take the right decision. Only very rare business cases would not let you ‘sleep on it’ before deciding what to do, so take advantage of doing this – the benefits will come with time.

To cut a long story short, ‘no’ is a phrase you certainly need to use more often in both your private and business life. Learn to say it gracefully and with style, without hurting people’s feelings and with the perspective of keeping doors open – never lock them. However, no matter what way you say it, make sure you are in control of your own time. 2,740 days for activities of your own choice. How many of them do you have left? Spend them appropriately!

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If you’ve ever found yourself in a situation where you’re about to tend to the to-do list or start the job that needs your attention, and suddenly you remember you need to call a  relative you haven’t spoken to for ages, or find a minor dilemma of a work colleague more pressing, then you’re doing it … procrastinating!

You avoid tackling the task at hand by doing something else … anything else  We’ve all been there at some point, some of us more than others. Some of us most of the time!

Unfortunately, procrastination means the job doesn’t get finished, or even started in some cases.  The consequences of that, in itself, can be disconcerting; you won’t make an income, receive your promised bonus, or worse, you’ll become known as a “gonna” or perceived as unreliable and untrustworthy.

Procrastination generally comes from a fear of something – success, failure, change, too much responsibility or even fear of rejection.  Once you’ve finished what you started, or haven’t quite got around to starting, then what?

When you find yourself straightening the pencils on your desk, because you just “can’t work in this messy space”, stop.  Think about what it really is that is stopping you from working on your current project.

Once you identify the block, it’s easier to get on with the task.  Determine what concern or belief is the real cause of your fear of actually finishing the task and work with that.  Beware of using that as just another opportunity to procrastinate, too!

Of course, setting yourself some realistic goals and working to a plan are also going to make it easier – and definitely keep you on track!

Mostly, be honest with yourself about what you’re really doing.  Does the budgie really need its toenails clipped right now?  Or are you just procrastinating?

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