While it is important to manage your time with calendars, diaries and daily plans, effective time management also requires that you manage yourself.
Before you set about any task, big or small, stop and ask yourself whether this is the best use of your time. Perhaps there are other, better ways of achieving the same result. Or maybe it is a task that you are not particularly suited to that another person could do in half the time, in which case you might want to delegate.
If you do decide to take on the task yourself, ask yourself what is the best way to complete it quickly and easily. It only takes seconds to ask yourself these questions and listen to the answers that come.
As time goes on you will get better at this. One of the most important things to do is to learn how to ask the right questions. In general, your questions should begin with the word ‘what’. This focuses your attention and evokes clarity. The remainder of the question needs to ensure that it opens up possibilities, is solution oriented, elicits information and moves you forward.