There is a common misconception within the business leadership community, that the busier you are the more valuable your work is. In reality, chaos does not equal quality. We’ve all seen them, leaders who do nothing but run from meeting to meeting, chasing down new ideas without ever leaving any time to implement what they learn. Their business life is much like White Rabbit, the character in Alice in Wonderland who is always rushing around worried that he will be “late for to a very important date.”
In contrast, disciplined leaders understand how to manage their time effectively. All leaders go through this process. You may find yourself rushing from meeting to meeting trying to make room for your employees at the beginning of your career. However, as you develop your skills you will find new ways of controlling your situation with confidence and ease.
To take back your personal and professional life, consider the following three methods.
Understand when it’s time to say “no.” Don’t put more on your plate than you need or have to. Even if you are just starting out and want to make a big impression, understand that just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. I personally learned how to say “no” and the value of doing so after learning from other leadership role models. By maintaining confidence, willingness to let go of control through delegation, and determination, you can create a healthier schedule that benefits your career.
Pencil in Personal time. This might sound counterintuitive, but scheduling time for yourself and your family is the hallmark of a good leader. No one else can make you take a break but you. It is your responsibility to manage your well-being and develop a balanced lifestyle. The more balanced your life is, the more respect you’ll earn from colleagues and employees who take their orders from you. After all, when you put yourself and your family first, you display self-respect, and that is a quality everyone likes.
Avoid over-booking. Your time is precious, and overbooking tons of meetings and appointments is the opposite of the key to success. Learn when to slow down and take advantage of tools like Outlook or Evernote to keep your schedule under control. Also, give yourself breathing-time by booking breaks in between your meetings. This will help you gain clarity before your next big decision.
What are some situations where you can delegate more effectively as well as schedule additional personal time?