Since in quarantine, my screen time has sky rocketed. This daily habit I have been feeding has had a negative impact on my life and more specifically my productivity. I am spending more and more time online for things that are doing virtually nothing for me than any other activity that I give my time to.

The reason for my excessive screen time is procrastination. Procrastination in this day and age is almost impossible to avoid because of how much media and advertising we consume every where we go. Homes, workplaces and schools are flooded with advertisements regarding decisions we need to make causing the mind to jump from one thought to the next. The verticality of multimedia makes it harder and harder to focus when society keeps blaring for attention.

With having to spend as much time as possible indoors, my procrastination and media consumption have both taken a toll for the worse. I noticed I was letting the excuse of the virus limit my potential for far too long. The more I told myself, “I’ll do it later” or “I don’t feel like it” the harder it was for me to let go of the things that were taking my time up. The easiest thing to compare it to is ripping off a bandage. The quicker you rip it off, the less it stings. Although tempting to confide in, procrastination can be limited with will power, daily habits and accountability. Just remember, change only comes when you want it to come.

Here is just a few tips I have picked up for better time management:

1. Delete the app – When I say, “the app,” I am taking about whatever app popped into your head first. Normally speaking, that is the app you favor the most. Setting boundaries for your time is critical in making an impactful change in regards to how you go about managing life. My first step to tackling such a topic would be to take yourself away from what’s stealing your time for as long as possible. For many people, it is social media that consumes the most time. Many people believe that deleting an app off their phone means deleting all there accounts. However, deleting any app off your phone to better manage your time is really a temporary change to break the habit of going on your phone to visit social media.

2. Wake up early – Although waking up early sound dreadful, it is taking advantage of your mornings. When I wake up early, I find myself doing more productive things that ultimately lead to more productive things throughout the day. Yet when I wake up late, I brush my teeth and go. Waking up late means you don’t have as many choices of how you want to spent your time because all your time went to sleep. When you wake up early, you can choose to be productive. You can get chores out of the way, catch up with a relative or spend extra time with your pet. Remember, life is all about choices so choose wisely.

3. Time Blocking – Although time blocking is hard to stick by, it can be the turning point of your success if created into a habit. I had recently come across the book, “The ONE Thing” by Gary W. Keller and Jay Papasan. While exploring the text, I learned how beneficial time blocking is. Time blocking is a great way to visually look at your time and if your anything like me, visually seeing something is way easier to remember than just hearing about it. You are also planning out your time to the very hour to insure you are being as productive as possible. 

4. Productivity entries twice a day – Productivity entries are morning and evening short journal entries about what you were scheduled to do and what you actually accomplished. In the morning, you jot down what you want to get accomplish and then be realistic with yourself. In the evening, write what you actually accomplished out of that list. Then, compare the two. Write them down in a place that you often refer too. When you start your entries, you might find it hard to make time for two journaling sessions a day. To this I say, start small and just make a list of what you accomplished every evening and work from there.

5. Have an accountability partner – Despite the regulations of social distancing, having someone to keep you in check throughout this transition can really make or break your success. Going through something is never easy, but going through something with someone else isn’t so bad. Find someone that is passionate and willing to put the work in. Someone that will help you even if they are mad at you. Trust me, it makes a world of a difference.

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