How To Use Deadlines to Manage Your Time

One of the best things you can do to help you with your busy day is to set deadlines.  There is a key time management principal that states our tasks take as long as the time we assign.  For example, let’s say you give yourself 4 hours to clean your house…guess what, you will use the entire 4 hours to complete the task.  However, let’s say that someone bet you $10,000 that you could not clean your house with the same quality in 2 hours.  I can guarantee you that you will find a way to finish the task in 2hrs—your house would be the cleanest it’s ever been! 

You see, deadlines for tasks are largely made up and can often be way longer than the actual time it takes to finish the task fast and correctly.  Let me ask you a question, “How well do you manage your time?”  Do you write “to do” lists for the day?  Do you keep a well-organized calendar of tasks that need to be done within a 2 month period of time?  If your answers to the above questions indicate that you don’t manage time well, then you need to learn some better time management skills.  I’m a big believer in using a simple “to do” list to drive my activities for the day.  I try to fill my list with things that have the biggest consequences and impact in my life.  Also, I usually have no more than 3 -5 important tasks that I can get done during the day making my list realistic and focused.

You and I both know it’s easy for a day to slip by with no real accomplishments—this is bad!  Start to place a huge amount of value on what you are doing during the day and where your time is going.  Of course you want to be an example for your child with your time so they can learn to get more done in less time.


  • Hold us accountable
  • Gives us a specific goal to shoot for
  • Will make us more effective by increasing the urgency to take action now