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Here’s why time management is important for small business owners

Time is the one commodity you can never replace, so use it wisely. Your mental health, physical health, family, and your business, will thank you for it.

As a business owner, it often feels like there is way too much to do. Add on top of that running a household, family and personal commitments, babies, fur babies, plant babies…maybe even man-babies, and it becomes all too much.

That’s not even mentioning all the things you need to do to run your business. So what about the time you need to invest in your business to grow it?

But what about multitasking? You might ask. Everyone multi-tasks and as women, we are quite good at it.

Contrary to popular opinion, multitasking doesn’t make you more productive. It is more harmful. A study has found that multitasking leads to changes in brain function over time, which leads to decreased productivity, even when focused. Not only that, but multitasking over time can also lead to absent-mindedness.

So it makes sense, and better for you, to focus on one task at a time. But how do you do that when you have a hundred things going on at once?

The secret is to tackle the most important tasks first. There is the 80/20 rule (also known as the Pareto Principle) that says that 80% of the consequences (or outcomes) result from 20% of the causes (or inputs).

Or in other words, 20% of what you do results in 80% of your outcomes.

So make a list of your tasks and prioritise those that provide the greatest returns. In life and business, this leads to not only the smashing of your goals but a transformation in the way you live your life.

So what benefits can wise time management bring?

1. Greater productivity

It might come as an irony but managing your time well even when you have 100 items on your to-do list leads to greater productivity. This is because effective time management means you prioritise the most important tasks at the beginning of your day (or at a time when you’re most energetic, whether that’s in the morning or night). When you get the important tasks out of the way first, you free up more time to do the easier tasks, which results in greater productivity overall.

2. Greater efficiency

Time management helps you identify tasks that you can do better and tasks that can be best outsourced. This leads to greater efficiency as you’re forced to focus more on the tasks that are more important to you.

Over time, you become better at what you do. When you become better at what you do, you become more efficient at it. When you become more efficient at it, it takes less time for you to do it. When it takes less time for you to do something, it gives you back more time to spend on doing your other tasks. It’s the gift that keeps on giving!

3. Less procrastination

Analysis paralysis comes to mind when time is not managed well. Having too many items on our to-do list and agonizing about getting them all done in time means instead of getting those items done, we end up procrastinating. How many times has this happened to you?  Not only that, having too many tasks creates too much distraction, and we end up stretching ourselves too thin and end up not getting any of the important tasks done.

4. Less stress

Multi-tasking leads to increased secretion of cortisol and adrenalin in the brain, the stress hormones. Multitasking leads to a temporary reduction in IQ by 10 points. By managing your time well, you create less stress for yourself, and less stress means you can function better mentally and physically. You are also more “present” in the moment, which is better for yourself and others around you.

5. Frees up more time

Managing time well frees up more time than you otherwise won’t have if you don’t manage it. It’s like money. Without a budget, clear goals, and plans, you end up unnecessarily losing money and going broke. But unlike money, which you can make again, losing time is something that you can never get back.

As a busy woman with family commitments and a business to run, your time is precious. So learning to manage your time well will free up more of your time to do the things you need to do and spend time with the people you love.

6. Boosts creativity

Time managed well boosts your creativity. This is because creativity is nurtured over time. Studies have shown that lack of time, pressure, and disorganisation negatively impacts creativity. Not only that, but stress created from multi-tasking can lessen your creativity.

On the flip side, being involved in a creative task (such as brainstorming ideas for your next launch or product improvements) lessens stress. So it’s like a positive feedback loop – the more creative you are the less you are stressed, and the less you’re stressed, the more you’re creative.

7. Reduces burnout

With reduced stress, greater productivity, efficiency, creativity, and more time on your hands, you reduce the risk of burnout.

A fun fact is that studies have found that creativity decreased mortality risk. I would like to add to that and say that creativity also gives longevity to your business. When you’re not burned out and you’re managing your time well, and there’s enough time available to you to stoke the embers of your creativity, your business (and you and your relationships!) has a much greater chance of not just surviving but thriving.

The key take-away

Protect your precious time by getting clear on your priorities and what matters most for your life and business. If you need help with copywriting and would like to take this off your already full to-do list, contact me and let’s have a conversation.