by Neil Fiore, PhD

Notice which of these statements best describes your attitude about time and your current time management behavior:

  1. You start working on projects early – often, the same day, and are rarely late for a flight or a meeting. You decide when to leave so you can anticipate problems and can arrive on time. You are seldom anxious about deadlines because you start – at very least, making some notes – on top priority tasks almost immediately.
  2. You delay starting on projects and often feel rushed and anxious about deadlines, even though you usually meet them. Nevertheless, you wish you had a “little more time” to do them right. You are sometimes late for flights & meetings by a few minutes and arrive breathless and worried.
  3. You often feel overwhelmed, out of control about time, and are frequently late on projects and calls. You try to finish “one more thing” before leaving. You think of yourself as a procrastinator or workaholic who “Works best under pressure.”
  4. You’re often frantic about dead-lines and are frequently late by more than 30 minutes. You fail to adjust for traffic conditions when planning. You try to juggle several tasks at once and seem to lose sight of the big picture and the essential, top priority projects.
  5. You’re unaware of time and refuse to be “controlled” by time or deadlines. You never think about “start times,” so deadlines often take you by surprise. You’re often late by as much as an hour because you’re easily distracted by email, calls, and other projects. It’s difficult for you to make the decision to let go of some activity you don’t have time for.

Scoring: If you identify with:

#1 and #2: You’re doing quite well. But, those who feel chronically rushed and anxious about deadlines will find that a few Time Management techniques and some coaching could rapidly lower their anxiety and put them in control of their time.

#3 and #4: You could benefit from a new perspective on time, priorities and the possibility of positive changes in attitude and behavior.

#5: You may initially resist the need to learn Time Management skills, but no doubt you and those around you suffer the consequences of your difficulty in acknowledging that there’s a limited amount of time. Coaching is highly recommended to end denial and to ignite the motivation to learn Time Management skills that will make your life easier, more productive, and more efficient.

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