This post is about a topic I honestly am having difficulties with. Each and every day the management of my time is a challenge, and I nearly close every week and month, with things I didn’t accomplish. Somebody once said that it is not about managing time, but it is all about managing yourself. What is your focus on, how long can you stay focused and how do you block all external distractions?
To work in sports (whether you’re a professional or a volunteer) requires time, and we all know that there is the whole rest of your life to be dealt with. Whatever you do, whether you are a stay at home parent, whether you’re an entrepreneur or are employed, you will occasionally find that there are times when you can’t seem to find time for both: working for your sports organization and at your job. We know though that there are many people who manage to do both quite well. How do they do it? Time management in sports begins right from the moment you decide to take a responsibility within a sports organization. Here are my 5 Tips for Time Management in Sports
1. Look in the mirror
First of all, it is not advisable to take any activity or assume a position if you don’t have at least a few hours each week that you can spare. The opportunity may be looking great, but if you go ahead and sign up when you are already stretched for time, you will disappoint not only the team that is counting on you but yourself as well. Can you really comply with these tasks? Do you have the capacity? Do you add value to the organization or is it the other way around?
So let’s assume that you have a few hours a week and you have decided to be part of a sports organization. How do you accomplish time management is sports?
2. Be clear and leave no doubt
You should be very clear on your tasks and responsibilities. I even advise you to have them on paper, so that there will be no confusion about how many hours you need to dedicate to your new challenge.
Some people schedule their duties either very early in the morning or late in the evening. At these times, there are fewer distractions and things are usually moving slowly. Wake up earlier if you have to, or sleep a bit later, but you will notice that the few hours that you dedicate constantly at these times will help you get your work done.
You should also plan the days in the week. If you have the Sunday for your family, then stick to that. You could on the other hand plan some specific parts during the week for your sport organization. Schedules are sometimes hard to stick to but if you do, you will find that you accomplish a whole lot in your day. The reason why most schedules are hard to keep is distractions from phone calls, emails, facebook, twitter and other things that can be done at other times. If you form part of a team, and everybody takes responsibility for their own task, you should be fine with scheduling some time during the week.
[quote type=”center”] It is not about managing time, but it is all about managing yourself.[/quote]
Prioritizing will help you succeed. What absolutely needs to be done and by what time? Are all the things you plan to do priority tasks? What will they help you accomplish? They say that 80% of results come from only 20% of your efforts, so think about this as you go through your to do list. It also helps to know that in an 8 hour workday, research shows that the best of us is productive for only about 4 hours the rest of the time is used up doing things that are not very productive.
If you look at this matrix (published in the popular book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People“.
Try to now and then put your activities in it. And then evaluate whether you are dedicating your (valuable) time on the right activity.
It may not be easy to delegate when you are working in sports. There is either no one to delegate to, or it is your specific task to get it done. But if you have the chance, by all means delegate. You can form your own team or committee, and cooperate with others for the good cause.
Time management in sports is a critical success factor and it requires that you have the discipline to plan your days and accomplish required results. Be aware though that you shouldn’t turn into a programmed robot, which follows daily schedules. The most important factor is that you need to have fun. Fun will motivate you to even put in more time, and you will even be able to positively influence your colleagues.