Working with Deadlines

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated August 9, 2016)

1

Deadlines—everyone has them, whether they want to admit it or not. For some, the deadline is making sure that they have a certain article finished by publication time; for others, a deadline means that having to get over to their kid's school on time. Whatever the reason, working with deadlines is a common practice. Unfortunately, many people have the same misconception about deadlines. They are not something to be feared, but rather something to be embraced. Here are a few guidelines that can help you get a little more organized in your life by working with deadlines.

  • Deadlines have power. Have you ever noticed how a project, task, or item that needs to be finished by a certain time invariably gets finished? This is because of the power that deadlines have. There is an almost unconscious urge, and sometimes very conscious pressure, to get things done quickly if there is a deadline attached.
  • Be realistic. If you are willing to work with deadlines, there is one thing that you need to be above all else, and that is realistic. Deadlines can be extremely helpful as long as they are realistic. For example, giving yourself one week to build a rocket ship to the moon is by no means of the imagination realistic. However, setting yourself a time limit of one hour to write about 400 words for a report is totally acceptable and reasonable.
  • Be prepared. One of the keys to working with deadlines is to be prepared. Be prepared to follow through with them since they are a commitment. Basically a deadline is a promise to yourself and others that you will have a project completed by a certain time. Be ready to follow through with that commitment. Another way that you need to be prepared is to ensure that you have all the tools necessary to complete the task on hand in a timely manner. For example, if you have a deadline to finish building a deck in your back yard in the next three days, it is a little hard to get the job done if you don't have the lumber, tools, or nails necessary.
  • Limit distractions. Without a doubt the bane of all deadlines is distractions, and they must be eliminated if at all possible, and at the very least limited. Simply put, a distraction is anything that will take your attention away from the task at hand. For example, answering a phone may not seem like much of a distraction at first. However, if you add up the time it takes to stop your work, answer the phone, talk to the person on the other end of the line, hang up, and then get back to work you would be surprised at exactly how much time has been lost. On average a simple 30 second yes or no conversation can actually eat up about 5 minutes of work time. Multiply this throughout the day and you can see exactly how quickly distractions can add up.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...

MORE FROM LEE

Greenhouse Gardening

Greenhouse gardening can be a great method for producing plants and flowers year round. However, what do you need to ...

Discover More

Organizing a Kitchen

Kitchens can very easily become a chaotic mess unless you know how to begin organizing it properly. It's a good thing ...

Discover More

Cleaning Decorative Pillows

Decorative pillows are great items that can help increase the beauty, and general comfort level, of almost any home ...

Discover More

MAX Power! A powerful lithium-ion drill/driver that delivers 0-to-650 RPM and 115 inches-per-pound of torque in a lightweight, easy-to-use package. An anti-slip soft grip and LED worklight makes this tool a delight to use. Check out Black & Decker 20-Volt Cordless Drill/Driver today!

More Organizing Tips

Organizing Your Day for Brainpower

How many times have you felt mentally exhausted halfway through the day? This common occurrence can easily be remedied ...

Discover More

Organizing the New Job Search

With so many companies closing their doors, it is not unusual to hear of someone searching for a new job. Organizing ...

Discover More

Improving Concentration

Do you happen to find yourself easily distracted, and having a hard time getting tasks completed? If so, the problem may ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured organizational tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is one less than 3?

2013-06-05 15:05:52

J J

This one of the best ideas for getting a necessary job done, even without a deadline. Just turn off the phone, stick a "please do not disturb" on the door" and get cracking.


Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured organizational tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)