It’s hard to always be on time with a bajillion things going on.
But I can give you time management techniques so you’re never late again.
First, let’s talk about why you need to be on time…
Why You Need to Be On Time
When you say you will be somewhere at a certain time, you are making a commitment to that person.
When you are late, you are telling that person that you don’t do what you say you will do. This is a reflection on your integrity.
Being on time shows that you are a man or your word.
Being on time isn’t about you. It is about the person who you are meeting. When you are late, you are saying you don’t respect that other person’s time. If nothing else, you are saying that you respect your time more than their time.
Over time, whether you realize it or not, being late strains your relationships (whether that’s professionally, personally, or both).
The bottom line is it’s pretty important to be on time. Of course, I am talking about usually and generally. Certainly, there are emergencies (real emergencies like you’re in the hospital or got into car accident) where you cannot be on time. But the emergencies are the rare exception, not the rule. “Traffic was horrible” isn’t going to cut it if you are late.
Now, let’s get to the good stuff. Let’s talk about time management techniques that teach you how to be on time.
How to Be On Time
So, now that you k now it’s important, here are a few strategies to help you be on time.
- Give yourself much more time than you think it will take. Add at least fifteen minutes to a half hour to your total estimate of how long something will take. If you do this every time you have to be somewhere, you will always be on time.
- Make appointment later than you want them to be. For example, if you want to meet someone for lunch at noon, tell them noon but put 11:30am in your calendar and stick to that time. Even if you’re early, that’s okay — you’ll start getting used to the idea of being early and on time.
- Commit to making fewer commits in a given day. Instead of cramming in all the 5 appointments you have to do in one day, only put one appointment down per day and spread the rest out (this will give you more time).
- Start saying no to things that don’t matter to you. This is a big one. If you have fewer commitments, you have more breathing room in your calendar. And more breathing room means more time to get from A to B.
- Use a calendar and watch the clock so you’re always thinking about what’s next. If you are perpetually late, you are not being intentional with your time. Make it a priority to use your calendar and watch the clock. This will help you know that you need to give yourself extra time to be where you need to be at a given time. For example, if you have on your calendar that you need to be at a doctor’s appointment at 2pm, then you should practice watching the clock starting at 1pm so that you are prepared to pack up, leave, and get to your appointment on time.
A Final Note!
Being on time is easy for some people and really hard for other people. Regardless of what camp you’re in, practice prioritizing being on time. If you don’t, you’ll sacrifice your own integrity and tarnish your relationships.