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  • Writer's pictureStephanie Marshall

Time Management is all about P.R.E.P.

Updated: Jun 20, 2020

In our busy lives, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and not achieve all we could in a day. Often we either forget what needs to be done or we do what is urgent rather than what is important. One technique I use to stay organized is to decide how you will handle a task as soon as you become aware that it either needs to be done or someone has requested you do it. I use the acronym PREP.

"Often we either forget what needs to be done or we do what is urgent rather than what is important. "

PRODUCE. If someone asks you to do something, you can choose to do it now if you have the time. If so, produce the goods!

REJECT. You don’t always have time to do everything others want of you. Have the confidence to say no. If you delay the decision to reject a task, you'll feel increasing pressure as you've created the expectation that you'll complete the task.

ENTRUST. If you have others in your life, who could do this task for you, ask them to do it for you. If they agree, you’ve entrusted the task to someone else. If you don't trust them, you'll become stressed as time goes by if they haven't completed the task.

PLAN. If the first three options aren't acceptable then you need to plan when you will do it. Stop what you are doing and put the task in your schedule. Not later. Not tomorrow. Now. Whether it is Microsoft Outlook or another scheduling application, if it is in there, you can’t forget it.

This approach is particularly important with e-mail messages. You need to take PREP action on incoming e-mail messages as soon as possible. If you ignore e-mail messages, you'll later discover that other people have made assumptions about your availability, expecting that what they have requested will be done.

The main point is, don’t procrastinate. Time management is an essential life skill when it comes to being organized. Decide whether you’ll do a task and if so, when.

If you want some help organizing your routine, you can always ask a professional to help you out.

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