21 ways to manage the stuff that sucks up your time: a review

Oh my goodness where has this book been all my life? Well, all of my working life anyway. Time management is not one of my greatest skills and although I’m not usually one to read ‘self help’ or manual type books, this one appealed to me. Since working from home I’ve felt an low level desire to be more organised start to build up. It begins like a soft drone and quickly becomes a shrieking siren filled with kids that selfishly want feeding and emails that need answering. It’s not just the lack of working space in my house, its the lack of working space in my brain. I’m not always working efficiently.

So Grace Marshalls’ book, 21 Ways to manage the stuff that sucks up your Time was a no-brainer. I needed it.

I was thankful it wasn’t a big thick tome of  a book. Because let’s face it- if lack of time has inspired you to read it, the last thing you want to have to do is find time to read it. In fact, the 101 pages are made up from small, almost bite sized chunks of information and tips- making it easy to dip in and out of when you get time. And the first bit I read really spoke to me. Bloggers, listen up:

This book contains valuable information on how to manage social media so that it doesn’t take over your life. And when you read it, you think “Wow, that was obvious; why didn’t I think of that?!”

I love the idea of batching emails- as the author says, you would be annoyed with the postman delivering all your mail one by one and expecting you to answer the door each time he did so. So why open and deal with all your emails as they come in too? Grace has a great tip for managing this- set an automated response mail which advises people of the times you check and answer emails. That cleverly ends the constant “Did you get my last mail” queries, which some of us know only too well can leak out into Twitter now and then.

Another great tip I’ve taken on board is the timer thing. This is great for those of us who work from home with children. Set a timer. This can work for social media too. Set  a timer and tell the kids that when the timer sounds, you are all theirs. And make sure you are too, otherwise it won’t work. With social media, set a timer for the however long you want to waste  spend on Twitter or Facebook, or wherever you hang out sharing pictures of cute kittens. When you’re time is up, get on with that task you’ve been putting off.

21 Ways to manage the stuff that sucks up your Time is full of easy to manage tips like this. Another great one has a whole chapter dedicate to it- saying no. We’ve all been there- we don’t want to say no to that nice person who’s asked us to do something, even though our day is already looking like a bit of a train wreck. We DON’T have time but we want to be nice… Well, there are tips to deal with that too.

This is my new bible. I have learnt more from this book in an afternoon that I ever did at teacher training school. It applies to any busy person- you don’t need to be a parent, or a blogger, or a person who works from home. It’s easy to read, easy to digest and full of common sense. AND it isn’t too long either- so it’s easy to finish!

Grace Marshall’s 21 Ways to manage the stuff that sucks up your Time is published by Discover Books and you can buy this for the busy person in your life right now from Amazon, for only £3.97.

 

** I received a copy of the book free of charge for review purposes only. No other payment was made and all opinions are my own.

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