Managing life is all about keeping balance and controlling the things that often times can get out of control. The following is a list of areas most of us need help managing, controlling and keeping in balance. For each area lsited below, I have also included a handful of management techniques I use to help keep myself balanced. I hope these techniques work for you as well.
Like a rubber band getting stretched to its limit, patience expands when put into practice. But, no matter how much practice we get with patience, we could all use a bit more of it in our lives. The patience we have will often get tested. Co-workers, customers, family members and especially the guy standing in line in front of you at Starbucks trying to order his Triple, Venti, Half-Sweet, Nonfat, Caramel Macchiato will test your patience.
Management techniques for patience:
- Try to determine what are the triggers for your impatience.
- Start to see the big picture instead of focusing on the now.
- Have a positive outlook and a positive attitude about life.
- Don’t act on impulse, give yourself a moment to give your best response.
- Consider the source, and act accordingly.
We all have the the same 24 hours a day in which to work our plan, both professionally and personally. And time management is something everyone can use more of. Look at it this way, if you were given 28 hours in a day, you would push the limits of 28 hours each and everyday. It’s not like you have ever seen a productive adult standing around saying “I am all done with my to-do list today, so I am just gonna hang out until I’m given my 24 hours tomorrow.” By nature, human beings push the limits. We try to cram in as many appointments, phone calls, emails, Tweets, carpool rides and homework sessions with our kids as possible.
Time management techniques:
- Write down your schedule and allow it to guide you through your day.
- Plan out your day before it gets out of control.
- Learn to say “No” to tasks or distractions if they are outside of your scope.
- Delegate to others especially if others are better qualified to handle the task.
- Don’t sweat the details. Sometimes small stuff is just that, small stuff.
In our society, the need for money is not something we should be ashamed of or that we should be fearful of talking about. By definition, money greases our economy. And no matter our position on the subject of money (love it, hate it, never have enough of it), we cannot dispute that we need it to acquire the stuff that is essential in our life. Whether it’s sending our kids to college, helping with an ailing parent's medical bill, saving it for a much needed vacation or just going out for a pizza, the lack of money is the cause of many problems we encounter. Some of us need help making more money and some need a lesson in what to do with it once we get it. And we love to count other people’s money. We can’t quite understand how people that make a lot of money manage to blow it all, while we fail to realize there are people that make less than us that are saying the same thing about us. One common theme though is that we all need help managing it.
Money management techniques:
- Follow a monthly budget. The easiest way to manage money is to control it on a monthly schedule.
- Contribute to a regular savings plan or a retirement plan.
- Be a wise consumer and do not spend money without doing research, especially on the large purchases.
- Set financial goals and monitor the goals on a regular basis to see how you are doing.
- Educate yourself as to the best methods to manage your finances. You care about your finances more than anyone else, so it’s your job to read, learn and plan for your future.
We are constantly learning from others. As we grow more relationships, we develop of sense of perspective and diversity. Although we want relationships to be easy, good relationships require effort, and rightfully so, because we can learn an awful lot from others, so they are worth the investment. Take time to nurture new relationships and stay connected to established relationships.
Management techniques for relationships:
- Communicate and listen to those you have relationships with. It is less important to be right and more important to listen.
- Resolve conflicts as they happen. Do not hang on to problems or let them accumulate. The expression, “Never go to bed angry.” is important. Do your best to work out conflicts quickly.
- Understand that change is the only thing that is constant. People, personalities and situations in life change. Allow change to be a part of your relationships.
- Trust each other and understand that people you are involved with personally and professionally need to both work toward a common goal.
- Perspective in a relationship will allow you to understand the person you are involved with. Try to see things from their perspective and have a greater understanding of what they are trying to achieve.
We all strive to be independent. Freedom thrust upon someone who has always been dependent upon others provides challenges of its own. For example, giving a young adult complete freedom to make their own decisions when they first go to college can result in huge challenges if we do not help them manage their freedom. When a lifetime employee strikes out of his own as a self-employed business owner, a sure fire way to fail is for him to get no help from others to manage his new found freedom. Freedom to make your own decisions, to be your own boss and to lead your own way is an awesome responsibility and full of amazing potential. The best part about freedom is that you are free to walk where your heart leads you. And that is an incredible feeling.
Management techniques for freedom:
- Learn from others and take action based upon their experiences.
- Get moving now. The best way to achieve freedom in your life is through action.
- Don’t be so critical of yourself. Not everyone is perfect and neither are you, but that’s ok. Don’t let your own negative self talk hold you back from being free.
- Don’t be afraid to fail. Show me a successful person and I will show you someone that has failed many times before they achieved success.
- Don’t let fear hold you back. Fear will be your worst enemy as you approach freedom. Instead of letting fear hold you back, use it as your motivation to move closer to your goals.
As you approach each of these areas, it is up to you to tailor your management techniques to help you gain control of each of the areas. Don’t look at the list as an overwhelming set of problems in need of resolution. My dad used to tell me problems are like elephants. If we were to eat the elephant, we would not just gulp it down. The best way to eat an elephant is one slice at a time. Action is the best remedy to managing any of the areas above.
What other areas of your life do you feel could use a bit more management. Please share your thoughts in the comments section below. I encourage you to share my blog with others on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and any other form of social media that you participate. If you wish to get my blog sent directly to you each Tuesday, please sign up by clicking here. Check out the rest of my website at www.DougSandler.com