Great Time Management Tips To Reduce Stress

Life can be a wild ride and stress seems almost unavoidable on a daily basis. Yet these effective time management tips and strategies are invaluable and effective for relieving stress and increasing productivity – at the same time.  

Let’s explore this relationship between time management and stress reduction, along with strategies to help you reclaim control of your day. 

Time Management Tips To Reduce Stress

I have always been an over-committer of the highest order. I used to pride myself in the ability to accomplish so much in such a short time. Yet in reality, I was a stressed-out mess, truly suffering from a bad case of poor time management and not allowing for leisure activities, relaxation, sometimes even neglecting close relationships. 

Many of us know that we should be making God our first priority, then husband, children, and work. In that ordering. This principle is Biblical, but hard at times to put into practice.

As you may know, I’ve designed this blog around the principle of living simply in order to have more or Jesus. Or, as John 3:30 says, “He must increase, but I must decrease”.

Time Management Tips

When we are managing our time rather than being jerked and pulled around by time managing us, our stress levels decrease. Time management is actually a Biblical principle, and the Scriptures contain plenty of instructions and references to time management. 

Stay tuned for an upcoming article about what the Bible has to say on the subject. Several verses do stand out, however. Ephesians 5:15-17 puts it well by telling us to make the best use of our time. 

Create Daily Routines

Throughout my adult life and entire career in the medical field, I have had a variable work schedule. I thought if I just had a regular schedule, I could get so much more done.

Eventually, though, I discovered I was fooling myself. And I figured out how to be productive no matter what kind of schedule I had. I created a daily routine for every kind of day I had to work with. 

Many of my work days were 12 hours long, which left me only enough time to sleep when I got home. I found that even of those days I could often accomplish something small.

I created a morning routine to get me out the door in time. While on my break I could make meal planning lists, gift lists, or plan errands for days off. I could pre-load my schedule to make those days off work even more productive. 

Since I no longer have such a rigorous a schedule, I’ve been challenged by the false notion of endless time to get things done. So I continue with my routine and task list for each day.

Unless I have to be somewhere at a certain time, I don’t need a strict schedule, but time-blocking by assigning my tasks to morning, afternoon, or evening works wonders. 

Everyone can be more productive and less stress in the process, although our routines and method of productivity will vary depending on what stage of life we are in. 

Learn to Live Well – Right Where You Are 

When looking at the many different stages of a woman’s life, we often think we must wait until a calmer life season to get life organized. We’ve all been guilty of wishing our lives away at some time or another. 

Life seasons affect everyone, from moms, to working women, to caregivers, those living with health issues, retirees, and hobbyists, just to name a few.

There are seasons of grief, season of trials, healing, forgiveness, growth, and so many more. These are only a minute few of the many examples of life stages a person may pass through. The point is, that in some seasons, we can barely fit in the essentials, and others allow us a little more time to breathe. 

We often feel we can’t be productive when we’re busy, but taking a breath, evaluating what you can do right now, and accepting what you cannot will help keep you from overload, which causes truly unnecessary and excessive stress. 

Plan Your Day “With Room” (Or Margin)

This one is hard for me. I like to have just the right amount of time planned. I’m rarely too early for anything, yet I’m not usually late, either. Yet, I find that even being “just in time” can create a lot of stress if there is a delay along the way. 

Here’s an example that helps me to build a little extra time into my plans:  I always say I like a little coffee with my cream. At one time I actually learned how to order a coffee or cappuccino at Starbucks that allows for extra creamer by ordering it “with room”. 

Just like ordering the drink “with room” leaves space in the cup to add a significant amount of extra goodness, adding extra room in your schedule leaves space for interruptions or other unexpected happenings. If nothing happens to take up the extra time, you can enjoy the freedom these good time management strategies are giving you. 

This one is hard for me. I like to have just the right amount of time planned. I’m rarely too early for anything, yet I’m not usually late, either. Yet, I find that even being “just in time” can create a lot of stress if there is a delay along the way. 

Some Things To Do With A Little “Room” In Your Schedule:

  • Catch up if you’ve gotten behind
  • Relax for a bit, sit on the porch, take a nap, read, craft or daydream
  • Use a hint from Learning To Enjoy The Simple Things In Life or Secrets To A Life Of Contentment
  • Chat with a friend or have lunch or coffee if there’s time
  • Encourage or do something nice for someone, even a stranger
  • Arrive early
  • Accomplish something not on your list 

Keep A Running To-Do List

Did you know that making lists can be an effective stress management technique? Some people (including my husband) don’t like lists. I for one, am a big fan of list-making. Lists can be our memory, freeing up our brains to think of other things. 

brain-dump list, or writing down everything you need to do at some point is a perfect example of freeing up your thought process. It involves no time frames, no list format, and forget about spelling or grammar or neatness.  This list is just to get everything out on paper. 

After you dump out your brain on the page, you can start to weed out priorities and other specifics.  If you use a planner (I highly recommend that you do), items from this list can be moved to the appropriate month on the calendar and to the correct week and day on the weekly schedule .

I always have a brain-dump list going just beside my weekly schedule in my planner. This helps me to set realistic goals for the coming week as I plan ahead. Creating a weekly schedule gets the most important tasks front and center so that nothing gets left behind. If you have specific activities or appointments, a schedule is a life saver. 

Some people even like to add in a separate daily to-do list, especially if there are a lot of specific tasks that need done. I usually make a to-do list when I’m preparing for something that involves multiple steps or things to remember. I can then prioritize, deciding what needs done first.

Delegating – Asking Others To Help

We women are often willing to help others, yet reluctant to ask for help ourselves. Even if you are one who hates asking, try to realize that being able to help when there is a need often rewards the giver as well as encouraging the recipient.

Involving other members of the family to help can make a big difference. If you have small children, just asking them to help with simple things teaches them the art of being helpful. Older children can take on simple chores, also learning the pleasure of helping out. A pleasant thank you is often all the encouragement a child needs to feel appreciated and useful. 

 Working together with your spouse to manage your home and family will accomplish even more than double the amount you can do yourself. Work together to plan, then share the responsibility for getting it done. Large tasks become much easier with another adult to share the load. 

This teamwork approach will have a positive impact on your relationship, as well as accomplishing the task together with the added benefit of the message this sends to your children when they see you cooperating with each other. 

Some Pitfalls To Avoid For Less Stress

In addition to the tips for good time management, here are a few pitfalls that can hinder your progress and become sources of stress. 

  • Neglecting time with your spouse – This should be non-negotiable in your relationship (Ecclesiastes 9:9).
  • Procrastination – Postponing tasks gets in the way of productivity by increasing stress and creating a backlog of work (1 Corinthians 14:40).
  • Too much time – Lots of free time does not necessarily equal productivity. In fact, the opposite is most often true (Ecclesiastes 11:4). 
  • Neglecting yourself – Getting enough sleep, physical activity, and some time doing what you enjoy is not wasted time (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).
  • Overcommitting –  This can spread you too thin, leaving you with too little time and energy, and actually decrease your productivity (Psalm 127:2)
  • Distractions – Checking emails or social media can knock your schedule off track, and slow progress. If you must, set a time for it, and stick to the time (Mark 4:19)
  • Failing to prioritize – This can result in spending time on less important activities while neglecting the most important one (Romans 12:2)                                          
  • Comparison – Slows progress and distracts from accomplishing. Make a schedule that works for you, not what looks good to someone else (Galatians 1:10)

No matter what’s currently going on in your life, you can be productive by using effective time management strategies. Whether you have only short bursts of time in which to accomplish tasks, or hours stretching ahead of you with no defined purpose, the best way to be productive is to take charge of your time      

Creating a productive life is not a race or a competition. You won’t do it perfectly or like anyone else. But a good system can change the way you live and work. You can get things done with a sense of accomplishment even though you may have less time to spare.  

You are a child of God, Daughter Of The King Of Kings, and God has important plans and a special purpose for you. In order to live out that purpose and plan you are responsible for making the best use of time (Ephesians 5:15-17).

By implementing at least a few of these time management tips and strategies you can transform stress into productivity and make the most of your time as you work out His plan and purpose in your life.

Proverbs 31 Woman 30-Day bible Reading Plan
Time Management Tips To Reduce Stress

Similar Posts