Guest Articles >> Personal Development

The Internet and Time Management Habits

By sunny breeze

In order to live our lives successfully and creatively and to realize our full potential as human beings, we have to manage our time and energy wisely. Internet is a very useful research tool that can help us connect with other people and enable us to gather information and knowledge on numerous diverse topics almost instantly. However, if we are not careful enough, Internet can quickly show its ugly face and turn itself into a black hole, constantly interrupting our attention, subtly sucking our time and energy, preventing us to achieve our personal and spiritual goals and posing a major distraction in our personal and spiritual development.

time is always passing by

Remember that spiritual development is the most important task in our lives. There is nothing more important than that. Don't waste the time that you have set aside for meditation, prayer, concentration, yoga, or physical exercise on checking your email account, connecting to your facebook friends or aimlessly surfing the web.

If you have been addicted to the internet world of instant connectivity and messaging, there is good news. You don't have to be a slave to your various internet and computer-related habits. You just need to develop a couple of simple rules that, in time, will end up being your new, useful routines. These routines you will never ever want to trade for the meaningless waste of time and negative habits of the online world.

Rule Number 1: Forget About Multitasking

In this time of technology, there is a load of information that has to be processed. There are various decisions that need to be made every day. We are forced to work on multiple projects and we have to perform a number different computer tasks every day. Emails are filling up our inboxes, the cell-phone is ringing, we get new notifications and messages by the minute. There is enough chaos in this world. You don't need your multitasking to bring additional disarray. In fact, computer multitasking is just one aspect of human multitasking.

So, forget about all this mess. Do ONE task or ONE project at the time. Close all applications, close all open windows, all programs, word processors, or internet browsers. Keep the absolute minimum of programs required to finish your task - nothing else.

For example, if you have to check your mailbox, do only that. Close every other application and devote your time and attention to doing this task only. Only after you have finished with the email checking you can move to some other task.

Note: if you need to use your internet browser to accomplish your task, close all additional Tabs that are not required.

Rule Number 2: Set a Time Window

Always set a time window for your tasks. Pick up a task that is important to you, but set a time limit anyway. Estimate how long it will take to finish the selected job and stick to the predetermined time window. A good time limit should be given in minutes, like for example 20, 30, or 40 minutes. If it takes more to finish your it, it might be a good idea to divide your task into chunks that will fit into the above mentioned limits. Be realistic when doing that, because setting a time window will help you focus even better, knowing that you don't have the whole day to perform whatever you need to do.

Rule Number 3: Don't Interrupt Your Task

This step is crucial for a successful completion of the steps 1. and 2.
When you start following the first two steps on some of your tasks at hand, you will notice that after a while you get the irresistible urge to check your email client or Twitter or Facebook or Pinterest or do whatever you have a habit of doing.

DON'T DO THAT. Close your eyes and take a deep breath. Relax for a couple of moment. Think about the spiral of negative habits your interruption will provoke. Think of the time lost in vain.

And, then, choose wisely and return to your task at hand.

After each of the tasks you have completed successfully, give yourself some free time (10 to 20 minutes) to relax or do whatever you want. Choose the most important tasks first and do them at the beginning of each day. For me, the most important task is meditation or some other spiritual and personal development related activity, so whenever I can, I try to do this task first thing in the morning. Reduce the frequency of some of the day-to-day, repetitive tasks. In general, you can check for new emails one, two or at most three times a day. Very rarely the emails contain important and urgent information that require immediate attention.

If you manage to adopt these simple habits, you will considerably improve your time-management skills, reduce stress, improve productivity and a lot of other aspects of your life in general.

Remember that TIME is the single most important asset you have been given when you started your life on planet Earth. You can make up for almost anything you fail to do or you do in vain, but you can never make up for the time you have lost on doing insignificant things.

About the Author

Sunny breeze is a member of sunnyray's staff.

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