Here’s a startling fact. Americans work more hours than medieval peasants did. Nearly one in five American workers spends more than 50 hours per week at work. That's according to the findings of Harvard economics professor, Juliet Schor. For small business owners, it’s more like 60 hours a week.
If you ever feel like you don’t have enough hours in the day to do everything that needs done, you may be suffering from the phenomenon known as “time poverty.”
Symptoms of time poverty include:
• Feeling like you have been very busy, but have accomplished very little
• Feeling like there are too few hours in the day
• Trending toward taking fewer days off
• Missing family commitments due to work
• Remaining tethered to your office 24/7 via cell phone or email
To an extent, technology is to blame. The same devices that promise us freedom and flexibility also keep us hopelessly tied to the things that we need a break from. Clients and customers are able to reach us in countless ways, and in the instant gratification society in which we now live, they often expect an immediate response.
Unfortunately, not all of us are naturally prone to effective time management. But don’t worry, it’s not a hopeless case. You can overcome time poverty by applying some good old-fashioned time management strategies.
Decide what needs to get done, keeping long-term and short-term priorities in mind. It’s easy to get caught up in daily tasks and lose sight of the big picture. Refer back to your business plan (you do have one, don’t you?). Know your goals for your business and decide what types of activities you should be engaging in monthly, weekly and daily to keep you on track.
Plan your day.
Whether you do it the night before, or the morning of, you should start every day with a plan of how you will use your time. Write it down, and keep your list within arm’s reach so if you get sidetracked you can easily refer back to it and get back on task.
Define your work hours.
Setting designated work hours (and sticking to them) will help you manage your time better. It changes your attitude from “I’ll go home after the work is done,” to “I need to have this done by the time I leave at 7.” It’s like setting a deadline for yourself.
Generally, there are two reasons that people procrastinate. It’s because they don’t want to do whatever it is that needs done, or it’s because they don’t know how to do it. If you find yourself procrastinating, determine the reason. If it’s because you don’t want to do it, get over it. Or find someone else to do it. If you don’t know how to do what needs done, seek help. Ask people in your network for help, search the internet or check your library’s resources to try to educate yourself. If you still don’t feel like you are the right person for the task, then it is time to find someone else to take care of it.
Copyright – Chamber Speak LLC
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Meet Congressman Blain Luetkemeyer....
Tell us about yourself...
I am proudly from St. Elizabeth where I raised my three children and operate a 160-acre farm. I went to school at Lincoln University and prior to becoming a United States Representative, I raised livestock, was a small businessman, and worked in the banking and insurance fields.
Tell us about your organization...
I represent our state’s 3rd District in Congress, which includes more than 762,000 constituents residing in 13 counties in eastern and central Missouri.
What is the mission/vision of your organization?
The mission of this office is to fairly represent the people of our district by listening to and addressing their concerns, while also acting as an advocate for all Missourians and looking out for the best interests of the American people.
What do you do to serve your clients best?
My offices are happy to help constituents with federal agencies, federal grants, service academy nominations, and internships. I have three district offices, Wentzville, Washington, and Jefferson City, and my staff and I regularly meet with individuals and organizations in the local area. Hearing from you helps me do my job as a representative better.
What are you most looking forward to in the next 5 years for the company?
I am very excited about the future of America. The House of Representatives is hard at work to repeal Dodd-Frank and put consumers back in charge of their finances. In addition, we are working on a replacement to Obamacare and working on tax reform so most Americans will soon be able to file their taxes on a piece of paper the size of a notecard. Those are the big ticket items the House has started to work on this term. I’m also focused on our area’s water infrastructure: the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers give our area a big advantage when it comes to moving goods to market, and we’ve got ensure that these waterways are maintained for commerce and navigation.
Why would you recommend the O’Fallon Chamber?
I want to thank the O’Fallon Chamber of Commerce for all of the hard work that it does in St. Charles County. The Chamber is incredibly active in the area and by having regular meetings and constant communication, you are able to bring your ideas from the local business community to Washington so we can work on your behalf.