Family & Lifestyle

Learn to manage your time like a professional athlete

With the Commonwealth Games being held in the Gold Coast from 4-15 April, now is the perfect time to think like an athlete. We are not talking about jumping over hurdles, or achieving your best 100 metres – we are talking about how to manage your time like a professional athlete would.

Here are some tips to get you started:

1. Have a game plan

Never underestimate the importance of a game plan. Throughout the working week, you’re bound to have an endless list of things you’ll need to manage. Ranging from getting the kids to and from school, to more work related tasks, like ensuring you are meeting your project deadlines.

You could create a game plan for the week by scheduling your tasks into your calendar/diary to help you have a clear idea of what you have ahead. This means you can see the periods of time you have free, and when you can schedule some all-important “me” time.

2. Utilise your support network

A professional athlete never gets to the finish line alone. They have a whole support network behind them that have helped get them to where they are today, such as their coach, trainer and physiotherapist. When it comes to time management, it’s important that you don’t let the entire world fall on your shoulders and instead call on the help of those around you.

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For instance, if you’re struggling to manage a large project at work, is there a colleague that could help you out? Or when it comes to family life, could you organise a car pool with a family friend, so you’re not the only one dropping the kids off? Calling on your network will ensure you’re not overstretched and can manage your time effectively.

3. Get on top of your finances

Athletes can’t afford distractions and the same goes for ensuring you’re managing your time effectively. However, that can be hard to do when bills and payments are in the back of your mind. To ensure you never miss a payment it could be as simple as setting reminders in your phone or alternatively using bill management tools like the Bills Monitor app or BPAY View. If you’re having trouble actually paying your bills, MoneySmart’s budget planner tool is a good place to start, as it will help you see where your money is going so you can budget accordingly.

Also, take the time to think about other areas of your finances such as whether you have adequate insurance cover – such as home and contents insurance, life insurance or income protection insurance. Knowing you’re covered in the case of an emergency will also be an added stress-reliever.

4. Look after your health

Of course, one of the most important aspects of being a professional athlete is ensuring you have good health. If you’re having a restful night’s sleep of around 7-8 hours, eating a nutritious meal plan and getting in at least 30 minutes of exercise a day, you’ll be much better equipped to tackling all those tasks ahead for the week.

Remember, the most important thing when it comes to time management is ensuring you have a good work life balance, so you’re achieving the best possible results at work but also enjoying time with your family outside those hours.

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