How often do you hear the saying, “if only there were more time in a day.” It’s safe to say, at some point, or maybe even still do, relate to this statement. Regardless of how busy your day is or isn’t, time management is still a crucial aspect of everyone’s day. We are limited in our daily time, so we must make the most of it. Time mapping allows you to maximize your day and take advantage of every moment to get the most out of your time.
What Is Time Mapping?
Time mapping is a time management technique that gives someone the tools to get the most out of their day. To ensure maximum productivity, many professionals use time mapping to help create a clear plan for the day. From minor to significant responsibilities, one can map out their entire day and put every second to good use.
Time Mapping vs. Time Blocking
Anyone researching time management and productivity will have heard of time blocking. Time mapping and blocking do coincide with each other; however, they’re not the same thing despite being frequently used synonymously. Time blocking involves blocking out a specified time to do a task that doesn’t exceed the time window.
Time mapping is more the layout of the operations in sequential order, sometimes with or without time frames depending on the task.
Benefits of Time Mapping
One of the best daily practices you can implement is anything that involves optimizing your day and productivity. There are many benefits time mapping can offer you and your business, depending on your approach.
Improve Decision-Making Process
When making the most of your day, people’s most significant issue is not knowing what to do. After you finish one task, you might ask yourself, “what now?” Time mapping removes this question from the equation by clearly illustrating what you need to do and eliminating the need to think.
The less time you take making decisions, the more likely you’ll stay on track to improving your overall productivity.
Insights Into Your Productivity & Efficiency
How will you know something is working if you can’t track its performance? Time mapping is one of the best ways to track your productivity and efficiency to see what’s working and what needs some help. By taking a granular approach to your time, you can more carefully follow overall performance and see how you can optimize.
Time management is an ever-evolving area that needs constant improvement to keep reaping the benefits.
Reduce The Number of Unfinished Tasks
It’s all too common for time to just slip away from us, the next thing we know, it’s almost time to end the day, and we still have unfinished tasks. One of the worst feelings is not being able to end your day on a positive note and see all your tasks checked off. Implementing new time management techniques will ensure you stay productive throughout the day and finish everything.
Understand How You Work Best & When
Keeping better track of your time means you get to learn about yourself and when you thrive. Everyone performs differently throughout the day, so it’s best you know what works for you. Some people are chipper and more productive in the morning, while others enjoy burning the midnight oil.
Time mapping gives you a better indicator of when you should tackle specific tasks based on what’s required and what time of day you work best.
How To Create a Time Map in 5 Simple Steps
Creating a time that requires little effort at first is critical. A successful time map’s most vital components are discipline and consistency. The more you practice time mapping, the more likely you’ll be productive and build solid habits. Here’s how to start creating your time map.
1. Access Your Current Time Spent On Tasks
To create the best time map possible, you need to know how long your tasks will take. This will allow you to create an accurate time map that is realistic and doesn’t spread you too thin. You don’t want to redline every day, because eventually, you’ll face burnout and spiral downward.
2. Create A To-Do List From All Parts Of Your Life
Your time map can be as inclusive or exclusive as you’d like it to be, but it’s recommended to map your time for the entire day. Mapping your whole day also means mapping your personal and professional tasks for the best accuracy. We know it’s not good to mix business with unique things, but the best time maps are for the whole day.
3. Prioritize Tasks
After you’ve listed everything that needs to be done and how long it will take, you need to prioritize them. Prioritizing tasks is how you become productive and get the most out of your day. Look for deadlines or hard dates to determine if something is a priority.
Typically, this will show you what needs to be tackled first and what can wait for a better moment in the day. You probably want to finish a work assignment due in the morning before you clear out your inbox.
4. Schedule Time Blocks For Individual Tasks
You’ll want to utilize time blocks with your time map for the best accuracy and productivity in one day. Use time blocks to give yourself the most clarity about your day and truly understand how to create the best time map possible.
5. Color Code Your Tasks
Color coding is an added detail that is the cherry on top when trying to optimize your time map. Colors on your time map can mean certain things like a specific task, category, or type of task you need to accomplish. A color code can also help break the time map apart and help you better understand the different jobs you still have to finish without everything blending.
Review & Improve Based On Performance
Time is already so strained it can feel near impossible to keep up with everything you need to get done. Starting a time map is one of the best decisions you can make if you want to increase productivity in one day. Time maps offer a way to clearly define what needs to happen in a day and keep you efficiently moving from one task to the next.
Once you start a time map, you must stay consistent with keeping building upon what you started. Set a time aside once a week, a month, or whenever works best for you to review your time map and find new areas to improve.
The Ultimate Time Mapping Solution
Hours Time Lord is the ultimate time mapping solution. Download the Time Lord app today and start carving out even more time in your day and boosting overall productivity across your entire team.