Time Management Tip #3 – Write it Down

Do you ever feel scattered or like there is too much in your head? When you have a spare moment, do you have so many things in your head that you don’t know where to start? Do you wake up at night wondering if you have missed something?

These are symptoms of a larger challenge – trying to keep track of everything or of many/most things in your head.

The metaphor I like is the shopping list. Many people keep a shopping list on their refrigerator and every time they finish something in their cupboard or fridge, they write it down on the list. Then they take the list with them to the store on Saturday and they shop for all the items they need.

Those who don’t do this often manage by remembering what they need in their heads. This leads them to find they don’t have the necessary ingredients when it comes time to make dinner. Then they are going to the store more than once a week. Once at the store, they don’t remember everything they need so they walk down each aisle and buy what appeals to them. Under this method, they don’t always get what is healthiest, best or least expensive. And often they don’t get what they need.

Having a list makes us purposeful. “Purposeful” is a word I use to mean “operating consciously and pursuant to a known purpose.” People tend to fall into one of two camps – purposeful or somewhat directionless. Now if you are not acting purposefully, it does not mean you are willy nilly, going whichever way the wind blows. It just means that you may not be consciously going out to get what you need. You may need to visit the grocery store 5 times before you remember the ice cream. Obviously, this is not the best use of your time.

Our brains are brilliant at focusing on one thing at a time. They are not great at remembering things. Sometimes they remember at the wrong time – like in the middle of the night. Time management is energy management. Trying to keep everything in your head is tiring. Your energy drains and it is harder to get everything done.

So try this – sit down and make a list of every single thing you can think of that you need to do. You might have a list for home and one for work. You might even have different lists for different projects. Effective time management involves experimentation – try different mechanisms and see what works. You might have a large “everything” list and a smaller “today” list. Keep your list in front of you or it won’t be very helpful. If you write things down in a reliable place, you can let go of it which frees up your brain to focus on the task at hand. You will feel a physical sense of relief.


Want to learn more?

April 26, 2017 (Wednesday) 9am – 11am

What Have You Been Doing All Day? Learn to Manage Time for Greater Results

So many busy professionals get to the end of their workday and ask themselves “What did I accomplish today?” They know that they’ve been running, but they don’t feel they have achieved anything. Do you ever have this experience?

Often we feel ineffective and out of balance. This workshop will teach you ways to be intentional in managing your time, your tasks and your energy – in a way that feels better and produces the results you say you want.

We will introduce you to a “paradigm shift” – a different and more effective way of viewing time and time management — and offer you specific changes that can be implemented right away to improve the way you use your time, ease stress and increase productivity.

Join us and learn:
• Prioritization
• Urgent vs. Non-Urgent Tasks
• Tools to Use for immediate changes


Take $5.00/person if 2 or more from same company

Sign up now! Don’t let time get in your way. https://www.eventbrite.com/o/mclaren-coaching-3074191754



I attended the workshop on time management and it changed the way that I work. I learned to block my time, schedule time to read emails, and I now have more time to get my work done (or at least it feels like I have more time). I also sent my assistant to the same workshop. When she returned from the workshop, she said “we need to change things around here so that you and I can be more productive.” Now, our office has now instituted a designated time for questions so that they don’t interrupt our work time, we are purposeful about when we schedule certain meetings, and set aside time to get work done.

Alexandria Goff, The Law Office of Alexandria Goff

McLaren Coaching’s Time Management class is the first of several trainings and other coaching I have done with Cami McLaren. The time management was exactly what I needed at that moment to help me make some firm decisions about managing my time more effectively. Cami offered specific strategies (big rocks, eating frogs) to implement. I no longer play the email lotto and approach managing my email in a specific and organized way. I have trained clients and friends not to expect a response to text messages during work hours. I am now sending 3 of my staff to the next Time Management training so we can all utilize the same approach.

Jennifer Duggan, Duggan Law Corp.

About the Author

Picture of Cami McLaren

Cami McLaren

is the owner of McLaren Coaching. She has been coaching professionals and leaders since early 2008. She runs Transformative Coaching Essentials, a coach training program that produces first rate Professional Coaches and "Coach-Style Leaders." She coaches individually and works with organizations to improve communication, time management, productivity and ultimately bring greater results.

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