I have mixed feelings about whether reading books on time management are a good use of my time, but I have a slight addiction to them. To save you time, however, I thought I'd bring you a little snippet of good guidance from The Power of an Hour, by Dave Lakhani. Lakhani suggests that you can create time by being "fearsomely focused." To acheive this intense focus, carve out some time away from family, friends, phones, etc. and:
Decide what to focus on. Be as detailed as possible.
Create a roadmap for action listing what steps you need to take.
List the tools that you will need. Have them ready and available.
Stay focused. Do not let anything distract you. This goes for e-mail, co-workers, and your own thoughts.
Get started. Taking decisive action to begin your project creates momentum.
Constantly check your progress against your list of steps. This positive feedback will build up the momentum you have started.
When distractions arise, take only a moment to acknowledge them, then get rid of them and go immediately back to work on your chosen project.
Keep working until you have completed all your steps. Being methodical pays off.
Congratulate yourself for completing the task and allow yourself to relax.
Lakhani suggests that we practice by attaining this focused state regularly, create a routine, and dedicate a specific, regular time and place to work with intense focus. I'm going to try this tonight. I have about four hours and twenty Gettin' Down to Business Card Wallets to finish up. We'll see how much I accomplish when I'm fearsomely focused!