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Choosing Your Daily To-Do Battles – Tips On Time Management

Written by: Shamala Tan, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.


A big mistake that we all make is we try to do them all or don’t do them at all! Have you ever experienced this? I have.

I used to be I WANT TO FINISH EVERYTHING TODAY. Or I’m so tired, I don’t want to do anything, and a procrastination monster I became. All that changed when getting my life organized was a matter of survival. It became such a valuable life skill that even when my life doesn’t depend on it, I am still a to-do list person! I read an article recently that people who live by to-do lists are decisive and they value their time. This is so true for me. I do this in my life and I also make sure that my clients follow this ‘rule’ in order to live their lives much more purposefully. This does not mean that I am a super-organized person or that I am rigid in how I do things.

One reason why I value my time is that I have realised that there is so much I want to do in my life and that 24 hours a day is barely any time. And if I do not get organised in how I use my time, I may just end up in the last hours of my life full of regrets. I do not want to end up way, so the next best thing is to take charge of what I can!

Over the years, I have developed different systems to take charge of my time. NOW, I have a list of to-dos on a daily basis. It doesn’t matter if it is the workday or a rest day. (I work on weekends because they are the best days for my coaching clients)The list helps me to stay on track to finish the tasks at hand. What I really like about lists is that it helps me to also filter out: urgent vs. important vs. needs to get done. By putting my to-dos into three categories, I have a broad overview of what I need to do. The list includes my personal to-dos, chores, work-related stuff, coaching sessions with clients, and so on.

I have set days where I only do certain things, and the rest will be left to other assigned days. This way, I do not have to keep adjusting my mind space several times a day in order to get things done. I only have to focus on a few things and get one thing done at a stretch with no interruption whatsoever. For e.g., writing this article is done at an assigned time, and day. I am geared up to write every week at this particular time and at this particular desktop! The writing flows as my mind is prepared to do its thing.

During my rest days, my list becomes somewhat loose. I may choose to take the dog out for an hour in the open field but I do not have a set time for that. I go more with the flow of my body and mind. I may choose to cook or just read, and again with no fixed time or agenda. So it is pretty restful with no stress whatsoever. So not everything needs to get done NOW or TODAY! It all comes down to planning your time, and the trick is not to fill your time with too much or too little. If you are starting to take charge of your time – adjustments are needed.

In my experience working with clients, I have witnessed that there are two extremes here: there are people who will realise that they actually cannot squeeze that much in, in 24 hours. And there are those who realise that they can add a whole lot more to their 24 hours! It has been too much or too little. Isn’t this interesting?

Sometimes people can nag us for not getting things done. I had a partner once who nagged at me for not immediately wanting to train my dog to be more consistent in a new behaviour. I told him, I am not choosing that battle today.

Simply because I have had a full day of work, and this thing with the dog is going to take more work than I can put in during that short time and it was not something I wanted to address immediately. Plus it was not life-threatening or detrimental to anyone.

So choose how you use your time wisely. Most importantly, remember it is not just about the time you use. It is all about energy management as well as the mental and emotional effort that plays a major role in how we use our time.

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Shamala Tan, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Shamala Tan is an author, spiritual entrepreneur, and healer. Her work focuses on transforming the lives of others on the spiritual, emotional, mental, and earthly levels. Shamala’s clients include small business owners, holistic practitioners as well as those seeking to find more significant meaning and value in life. Shamala offers laser coaching to her clients on a one-to-one basis or in a group environment, offline as well as online.


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