How does time management rule your days?

“I don’t have enough time”
Or White Rabbit in Alice in Wonderland : “I’m late, I’m late, for a very important date! No time to say “Hello, Good Bye” I’m late, I’m late, I’m late!”

How many times a day do you hear that kind of sentence in your head ? Or from your team ?

Photo credit : A Grisard

Reality is that we all have 24 hours a day !

All we can change is our perception of time, and our management of time.

Our relationship to time is a hot crucial topic in our professional and personal lives. 
This time pressure topic emerges in discussions with almost all my clients, be they managers, CEOs, coaches, Teams… 
Namely, through the observation that urgencies, operational tasks, flooding email boxes, overwhelm schedules, depriving leaders of moments to think, pause, reflect. 
Whereas, paradoxically, those moments when you slow down, think, pose and reflect, are crucial to being a performant Leader – manager, CEO, coach- or a performant Team.
In other words, taking time to pause, think and reflect, makes you gain time afterwards.

The connection to time is inevitable, since we are living organisms, on a living planet, with cycles : day and night, weeks, seasons, years, birth and death etc.
And there is a difference between the rational time and our sensation of time.

How do you articulate your connection to different times : the rational time, the “felt” time?

Rational time is the one that can be measured by a clock or a chronometer and humans have agreed on a unified way to measure it : the international time measurement system.
Sensation of time is time you feel in your body, telling you without looking at the clock, what time it is or for example how many minutes you still have in a meeting.

Our sensation of time is altered by all the  devices’ notifications, that connect us to rational time, and slice our perception and attention. 
On top of that, when we are in the FLOW state, we are feeling pleasure, we are connected to the instant, with a highly creative mind, a higher rate of mental fluidity and a high connexion to harmony or whatever feeds us, deeply and naturally. 
In that FLOW state, time seems to expand irrationally
Whenever we leave that state, we might ask ourselves “what time is it by the way?”, reconnecting to rational time.

Here are some exploration questions :

  • What are your latest experiences of 1 hour feeling like 5 minutes ?
  • On the other side, 1 hour feeling like a day ?
  • What are the ingredients of those moments ?
  • In your day, full of meetings, calls, todos, emails, etc.., how do you make room for those precious FLOW moments, where our performance is peaking? 
  • How do you set boundaries, to “loose time” so that you can gain time afterwards?

The steps to increase performance in time management are :

  • Find your answers to the questions above
  • Become aware of the powerfulness of time management, through your own experience
  • Become aware of the dead ends of time management
  • Imagine your fresh strategies to play the game differently
  • Train
  • Train again
  • Celebrate daily the differences brought by your new stratégies