You know how serendipity works.
You’re chugging along, thinking about one thing – and a set of circumstances creates quite a different result… that’s actually better than what you were doing!
You know how serendipity works.
You’re chugging along, thinking about one thing – and a set of circumstances creates quite a different result… that’s actually better than what you were doing!
You’ve surely seen a time management website that promises to make you more efficient. In a sense, Time Management Tao itself operates on that premise, though we take a more educational approach towards this end than providing you with tools and shortcuts.
Anyway, is a time management website really helpful? Does it save you time? Or is it just another way to waste time online?
Many of us who struggle to manage time are struggling under an overwhelming burden of tasks and deadlines.
Whew! That’s a crammed personal schedule.
So how to solve your dilemma of not having enough time? A time management website that is supposed to save you precious minutes or even hours can be a boon – if it works the way it is supposed to. A time managing website may charge you for access, or offer stuff for free. Some have basic services for free, but you will have to pay for the premium features.
A time management website like Myhours.com will help you track the time you spend on projects. You’ll be able to tell which components of your work are the most profitable, and help you deliver on your biggest goals. Of course, you’ll first have to enter enough data to enable the system to correctly identify your activities as being useful or not.
The trouble with a website like this is the learning curve you need to go through before you get the hang of things, and the time that you spend on setting things up at first. While it may suit specific professionals such as writers and freelancers who get paid for their time, it may be wasteful to work with such a system for many others.
Toggl is another time management website which gives you a timer to click on and off when you begin and finish a task. This helps keep a log of your online time, which can let you identify interruptions like unscheduled email checks, phone calls, or people breaking your work flow. Knowing how often you get sidetracked will give you a kick in the pants to concentrate on work and focus better.
The problem with using a service like this is that you’re often unconscious about distractions and delays that take you away from your work. It’s usually a few minutes (or hours?) after you’ve been lured away into Facebook’s rabbit holes, or YouTube’s video entertainment, that you realize you’re not working – and have forgotten to log the time you transferred attention!
Other programs make this switch automatically, each time you change an application or program. It will not uncover which browser window you work on, or whenever you click on to a time-wasting website, though. The automatic nature of the time log is appealing to some users.
Knowing what fraction of your work day is spent actually on project related activities can serve as a useful indicator of your efficiency and ability to resist distractions.
If you’re the kind of person who thrives on specific reminders related to your ‘to do’ list, then a service like FlyLady can be of value. It will send you emails throughout the course of your day, based on a schedule you input into their system previously. The reminders force you to focus on a specific activity at a particular time of the day, driving you towards getting all items on your list done.
A time management website can be of some value in identifying where you spend most of your time in the day, and to assess in a general manner how efficiently you use the time at work. But don’t expect it to automatically improve your time management skills. You’ll still need to master the 3 core principles of Time Management Tao:
“I cried because I had no shoes…
Until I saw a man with no feet”
So much about being a winner is to do with how you think.
We can view a situation, circumstance or event and color it
any way we wish – and though it objectively is the same, the
perspective we give it can differ.
A glass that looks half-empty to a pessimist is seen as being
half-full by an optimist. What matters is that the way you
think about things controls how you feel, how you behave and
how you believe in OTHER things related to it.
Of many winners I’ve met in the course of my life, there are
a few common traits that stand out…
There’s a reason so many of us are willing to settle. To
accept a mundane, dreary, routine existence rather than
striving to stand out, excel, WIN at the game of Life.
It is uncomfortable. Unfamiliar. Challenging.
Yes, many of us are afraid to win.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest
fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light,
not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves,
Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?“
— Marianne Williamson
Daring to dream, to aim for huge achievements, to break off
the shackles of limiting beliefs to truly follow our hearts
is not easy.
It is scary. Nerve-wracking. Even terrifying.
But it is also infinitely fulfilling… no matter if you ‘win’
Because a winner does not KNOW failure. To a winner, it is
just a temporary setback. One to learn lessons from. To
chalk up to experience. To improve upon – the next time.
“Today, we will do the tough things.
Tomorrow, the impossible ones.
And the day after that, we will perform miracles.”
And that’s why winners celebrate success. Even small ones.
Seemingly trivial ones.
They are the seeds of greater success in the future.
Winners understand the philosophy,
“Aim for the stars, you may reach the rooftops”
More important, and the single biggest trait I’ve observed in
winners, is their constant ability to cherish, value and
respect their accomplishments. Lessons learned in life.
Winners are grateful. Always. For everything.
I can often tell if someone will succeed long-term just by
watching how often they express gratitude for the things they
have, and have attained.
Daring to dream.
Three traits that are the forerunner of success.
No excuses. No explanations. No ‘whats’ or ‘ifs’ or ‘buts’.
Clear, concise and simple.
FEEL like a winner – because you ARE a winner.
Manifest it by making tiny tweaks to the way you THINK.
To complete the quote from Marianne Williamson above:
“You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people
won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as
“We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It
is not just in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own
light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the
same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically
Go change the world, you WINNER!
Do you believe that the best way to learn time management skills is to read books or attend courses about it?
Most books on time management I’ve read place a high emphasis on being disciplined. Personally, however, I’ve found it hard to follow… and stifling too.
Most home-based business owners and entrepreneurs choose to follow that somewhat unconventional path to following their heart essentially because they don’t like the confining environment of a disciplined, organized workplace. To replicate what they hate in their own business is often hard to do.
But here’s the good news – I’ve personally found decisiveness and determination a lot more effective in helping learn time management skills and better manage time than a stringent adherence to a time-table or imposed limitations.
My own workspace is apparently chaotic – though I can find anything within seconds. My computer files are pretty unstructured – but have a rough system or organization. My notes are often jumbled up and mixed – yet I can often compile them for a project.
How does that work?
I’m decisive when it comes to selecting or making choices. When I read email, there are only 3 quick choices to make – delete, read and reply now, or leave for later. It takes me less than 3 seconds per email to decide.
I’m determined to get important things done. This pig-headed stubborness at getting stuff finished has helped me achieve a lot more than I could have managed – even if I were meticulously disciplined. And that’s why the best way to learn time management skills is to get your hands dirty, and try out whatever system or method you want to learn.
For instance, let’s take the important, every day time management secret of how to productively use travel time. All of us travel, often for a large part of our day. And during that transit period, we all have what we appreciate is “down time”. It may amount to a few hours every day.
So, how best to use it? You might imagine it takes an elaborate time management strategy to come up with an answer – but it actually is quite simple, if you take the hands on approach to learn time management skills.
Plan to be bored!
I always take along a book or other reading material with me, or have audio recordings that I can listen to while driving. Whenever a “dead” moment pops up, I have some productive way to use it. This may have been taught in one of the many time management courses I studied, but adapting it to my unique circumstances takes practical application.
Of course, sometimes it’s best to simply allow yourself to be bored and just rest if you’re really tired. But the best way to learn time management skills and understand how to optimize your utilization of that precious resource is to try out different things and find what works best for you.
You can also learn more about time management by signing up for our free email newsletter, the “Time Taozine” and exploring the rest of this site as well as the Ming Vase Time Management guides.
Time management templates can help organize your work day and manage your to-do lists. But by itself, using a template driven approach won’t reduce stress or enhance fulfillment. Here’s a simple principle to show you that there’s always time for the important things in your life.
Time management templates have guided our very existence. Right from an impressionable young age, we have been indoctrinated in the power of being effective and organized, meeting deadlines and targets, keeping promises, and getting things done on schedule.
There’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, it’s highly desirable – provided you can achieve your goal without becoming stressed out about it, or getting frustrated if it doesn’t happen!
That’s the problem with time management templates guiding your work and life. You become a slave to routine that imprisons you and keeps you from enjoying your time and your life.
What you’re about to learn now will change that paradigm, and show you how to slow down time to find greater fulfillment.
In the “good old days”, we had constraints imposed upon time, which broke it down into meaningful chunks.
Every day’s news was delivered in the morning by the newspaper or radio/TV channels. Today, we have 24/7 news broadcasts – and the Web to take it mobile.
When you wanted share price information, you had to call your stock-broker who had a guy on the floor to relay it to you. Today, we have live streaming feeds.
You received your day’s task-list when you arrived at work and met with your supervisor or boss. Today, there’s email, SMS and Web based collaboration to issue you orders round the clock.
Technology has shrunk the time cycle. You’re always “on” – with downtime becoming scarce and hard to find. But that’s an artificially created reality – one you can break by learning how to…
We rush around at warp-speed, and think the world itself is speeding past as well. It’s only when we take a break from our hectic routine, go off on a holiday, or visit a different culture, that we realize that not everyone is in a tearing hurry all the time.
It’s upto ourselves to take responsibility for slowing down time. For throwing away the time management templates that control our existence. To re-define the meaning of managing time well.
Once you pause to think, and realize that it’s within your capacity to take control and make a change, it’s a liberating moment – because you suddenly realize that your 24 hour day grows longer simply by choosing to focus on doing different things.
The corporate world rewards you for rushing and doing things quickly. Doing them for longer time than others. And faster than your peers.
Trying to win that ‘race on a treadmill’ takes a serious toll on you.
You have less time for yourself, but are in a constant whirl of activity. That affects your health, happiness and harmony. To change it, and create time management templates that work in your favor, you must shift focus to fulfillment, rather than always being busy.
That’s why Time Management Tao begins with finding your center – the important things that need to get done.
Think about something you’ve always wanted to do. Imagine that you stop doing everything else you’re involved with, to focus on that single thing. Could you get it done?
“But I can’t just drop everything else!” you cry. That’s true. But you can drop enough other things that are less important when you identify correctly the things that are most important to you.
There’s always enough time to do what matters. The difficult part is identifying what’s important – and then dropping long lasting habits that keep us engaged pursuing activities that are meaningless in the long run.
There are some excellent tools for time management that have stood the test of time. But just as a top class hammer won’t make you a great carpenter, even the best time management tools need to be used in the right way.
1. To Do Lists
Make your lists regularly. But don’t put things willy-nilly on it. Limit your to-do list to the things that really matter. In the Ming Vase Time Management series of guides, you’ll learn the best ways to go about this.
Setting a higher priority on things that matter more to others than to yourself will keep you from being fulfilled and satisfied, stuck on the hamster wheel of trying to manage time. What matters most to you should always take higher priority.
3. Time Management Software
Various computer programs and applications can help you save time and streamline your activity. But unless you’re working towards your goals, the time you save will only be wasted on other ineffective projects. Know what you want, and then pick the right tools to help you get there.
Follow the Time Management Tao approach and
Here’s how you can get there. Explore the rest of this site for free information about managing your time better and finding better balance and harmony in your every day activities.
And keep updated with new developments by joining our “Time Taozine” email list. It’s free, and you’ll get weekly tips on time management to boost your productivity and enrich your enjoyment of life.
I recall that dinner table conversation with dad as if it happened yesterday. We were discussing an expensive purchase (I don’t remember what exactly).
“No, we can’t afford it,” he said, as usual.
Suddenly, something inside me snapped. Indignantly, I replied:
“You know what’s the difference between us? You say ‘We can’t afford it’, and figure out how to manage without it. I ask ‘HOW can we afford it?’ – and figure out a way to!”
It’s how I’ve lived all my life.
And as a result, amazing things have become possible.
So, how can you afford anything?
1. Make Choices – Or Compromise
Nobody can afford everything. It’s simply not practical. Even the richest person on earth can’t buy up all that he wants.
So we make choices. Set priorities. If you want X, maybe you must give up Y to have it. Or do Z to be able to afford it.
Say I give you 10,000 rupees every month. You could:
a. spend it on stuff you like, or
b. save it all up, and buy yourself a return ticket to Europe at the end of the year
The one thing you CAN’T do is both spend it AND save it!
You have to make a choice between the two options.
This logic applies to any resource you own.
The resource – time – is limited. It’s allocation is discretionary.
The good news is that, mostly, you have control over how it is distributed. The bad news is that, often, you don’t realize how much control you really have!
Another key to being able to afford anything is to…
2. Think Differently About Money
For many people, money is a tangible thing. Something to crave, cherish, own, get more of, and hoard – for its own sake.
But money is really a MEDIUM of exchange.
When two farmers live in the same village, and one grows tomatoes while the other grows potatoes, they simply bartered with each other. But when they lived far apart, instead of carrying heavy sacks of veggies back and forth, they invented a medium of exchange… and called it MONEY.
And that’s all it is – a means of exchanging what you have, for what you WANT.
(Another way I view money is as ENERGY that flows to where it can do things, but that’s another perspective for a different post!)
So… you exchange what you have – for money. We call this “work”. A job. Where you ‘spend’ your time and skill for a salary or other financial compensation.
Now, the key is to realize what you’re exchanging – and what it’s worth (or what you want in return for it).
Personally, I’d consider it fair when I can exchange an hour of my time for $100 (or 5,000 rupees). Anything less is not. That’s just me. Your “Number” will be different. But you ought to figure it out.
“But… but… but surely pediatric cardiac surgery doesn’t pay you so much?!”
You’re right. It doesn’t. In fact, it doesn’t pay me AT ALL – and I actually sponsor operations for those who can’t afford it, out of donations, and a portion of my earnings.
But then, for me, heart surgery isn’t “work”. It’s a dream come true. A calling. A passion. One that I will happily do forever, for free. That’s the difference.
Thinking differently about money alone won’t do, though. You’ll need to make enough of it.
3. Make Enough Money
You don’t get paid a lot of money to do average stuff. Things that anyone else can do just as well. Or worse, that can be automated.
There are just two ways to make as much money as you want…
a. Take risks – intelligently
Robbing a bank is risky. It can make you rich – fast. But it isn’t smart. Or right.
There are other ways to take risks that make you rich.
You could see and seize opportunities sooner than anyone else. Sure, there’s some risk involved. But if you can manage those risks, you can profit wildly.
b. Add value – consistently
People will pay you money for:
Pause and think about this for a moment.
* Travel, cosmetics and self-improvement are each multi-billion dollar industries – because they add excitement, happiness and joy to people’s lives.
* Healthcare and pharmaceutical companies are hot money-spinners around the world – because they relieve pain and suffering or treat illness.
* Biz opps and investment services have spawned hordes of millionaires across industries – because people will happily pay for “money at a discount”.
Which of them will make YOUR dreams come true?
Time management systems that are personalized, aligned with your true purpose in life, and enhance your efficiency are the only ones destined to deliver on a promise of lower stress and greater delight. The others are a relic of the past, fit only to be consigned to the garbage dump of time management history!
Time management systems have ruled the lives of corporate wage slaves for centuries. More recently, they have gradually encroached on the existence of everyone else – including you and me.
But despite their ubiquitous presence and constant evolution, not many time management systems have worked well to increase satisfaction, reduce stress or enhance time utility effectively.
What’s the reason for this dismal failure?
Listen to any time management video or training program, and you’ll hear about how all the events in your life can nicely fit into 3, 4 or 5 generic categories. Go back home (or to the office) and try to put that lesson into practice, and you’ll realize just how impractical it is!
Your life, like mine, is too rich, varied and exciting to be compartmentalized. And the important and special components of it are even harder to group in a general fashion. Your most boring chore may be what I live for.
That’s one of the biggest failings of existing systems that teach you how to manage time better.
Most methods of learning time management are based on a prescriptive approach of drawing up to-do lists and ordering them by importance before getting them done. This is an elegant and simple method, one that should work wonders in everyone’s life.
But the reality is that even when we follow popular time management lessons to the letter, our day isn’t any less rushed, our stress levels aren’t any lower, and our sense of fulfillment at the end of the day isn’t any higher.
And at the core of this failure is the simple, yet often overlooked fact that the things you put on your to-do list and then set priorities on are hardly ever of your own choice.
Usually they are tasks and chores that devolve upon you from someone else. Your boss, your co-workers, and your employees. Your family, your friends, and your community. Your club, your religious associations and many more external groups. All impose their needs and requirements upon your limited time.
The time management powerpoints you studied so carefully taught you how to prioritize and get them done. But…
They are for YOU!
These systems should focus first on making you happier – by taking you closer to your goals, getting your personal to-do list done, achieving your unique targets and purpose.
That’s where the majority of conventional time management systems dropped the ball. Any system that remains viable into the future must overcome this fatal weakness and embrace these 3 principles:
The only way a system to manage time can be pertinent and relevant to you is if it is designed (or can be adapted) to your uniqueness. It should be flexible and free-flowing enough to embrace the elements of your life and dreams that matter most – to YOU. That’s why Time Management Tao begins with finding the center, the things of greatest importance to you.
Famous effectiveness coach Stephen Covey tells the story of a man who spent a lot of effort climbing up a tall tree, only to look around when he reached the top – to discover that he was in the wrong forest! Many of us blindly follow efficiency systems without realizing they may not guide us in the right direction. A great time management system must help you set course first, before showing you how to navigate more efficiently.
In the ultimate analysis, no winning system can be lacking in efficiency training. But most systems already do a fine job of teaching efficiency. It’s the combination with the other 2 factors that combine in creating the ultimate time management systems.
On this site, and in the Ming Vase Time Management series of guides, you will find this emphasis on showing you how to manage time in a unique, individual, and personalized way. A way that is in alignment with your highest held values and deep, meaningful purpose.
You will find yourself setting goals that are relevant to you, and executing them effortlessly, fueled by the passion and energy that comes from living a purposeful life. That’s the Tao (or Way) to stress-free time management.
Be sure to also register for our free “Time Taozine” newsletter and receive weekly news about being effective and enjoying 3 extra hours in your busy, over-crowded day. Just fill in the registration form below with your name and email address.
It is about being an infopreneur. It is about touching lives. It is about changing the world. And finding your 1000 true fans.
It begins when I started implementing a promotion plan for a digital course for writers.
I was excited when one famous guru, with a reputation for quality and excellence (and a large list of prospective buyers!), agreed to review the course with a view to promoting it to his list.
For six weeks, I retained a cautious optimism – not really pinning all hopes on this happening, but dreaming about how nice it would be if it did.
Until a few days earlier.
That’s when the dream was shattered.
It hurt – a bit. Castles in the air came tumbling down.
– – –
Now, let me shift scenes… like a good story-teller.
Over the last 6 years, I have bought many expensive courses. One is about business strategy, from a true master of the art – Jay Abraham. Another is about creating and selling information products, by a best-selling author. And one is a program teaching how to sell expensive products and services online.
I also ordered a home-study version of Mark Victor Hansen’s ‘Book Marketing Mega’ – and paid less than 10% for it than these other courses.
As I’m going through the material, all of it top quality content, one thing sticks out like a sore thumb.
The ‘business coaching’ style of infopreneuring includes expensive content that is more ‘nuts and bolts’ stuff. It works. It’s like an instruction manual.
But what I’m gaining from the ‘Book Marketing Mega’ event goes deeper – far deeper. It touches my heart. It inspires me to aspire for great things.
It showcases the POWER of an infopreneur.
(It also costs 10 times LESS!)
– – –
And now, let’s turn back to the present.
Remember, I’m hurting from the ‘rejection’ of a ‘big name’ marketer.
So, I’m driving my car, and listening to one of the lectures in Mark Victor Hansen’s course – and hear these words:
“Lance Armstrong was right. It’s NOT about the bike.”
(It was a reference to the best-selling book by Lance Armstrong, 7 time winner of the grueling ‘Tour de France’ cycling challenge… read it if you haven’t – and the sequel)
He went on:
“It’s NOT about the book.
It’s NOT about the deal.
It’s NOT about the ‘Show me the money’.
T H E . M I S S I O N
The speaker was abused as a child. Badly. Yet, he says he is one of the most blessed people on earth. He says God has been kind to him.
And he asks:
“What will you do with your blessings?”
Because that’s what is important.
Put them together, align them behind a worthy cause, and you are guaranteed to succeed. In time.
In an instant, my mood changed – from ‘gloom and doom’ to a completely opposite one of optimism, possibility and enthusiasm.
I still have my mission.
It’s NOT about the deal that didn’t happen.
It’s about taking all my BLESSINGS and making them work to achieve my MISSION.
Before getting on with my work, and revising my promotion plan in the light of that minor setback, I wanted to write and share this with you.
To show you the POWER of being a writer.
To prove you can reach out and touch lives.
To convince you it is a NOBLE calling.
Yes, you can get rich doing it too.
But that isn’t the most important thing.
Then what is?
It’s the MISSION.
It’s your BLESSINGS.
And using them wisely.
Who was the speaker who shared those powerful insights about ‘Missions’ and ‘Blessings’?
The name is one that’s familiar to MILLIONS of Americans, and others too. It is DAVE PELZER. A survivor of childhood abuse, this author and activist is an inspiration to those who have been victimized.
The story of how he rose to fly an F117 Stealth Fighter, and received personal commendations from 5 U.S. Presidents and innumerable accolades including the
TOYA (Ten Outstanding Young Americans) award, is on his website at http://www.davepelzer.com/
Read it. Get inspired. Follow your dreams.
May success and rich rewards be yours – ALWAYS.