What are the 4 D’s of Time Management?

Apr 9, 2021 | Time Management

Do you struggle to manage your time? Do you find that you need more hours in the day to complete your tasks, routines, obligations and more? Today, I’m going to explain how you can use the 4 D’s of time management to help you solve some of your biggest productivity problems!

  1. DO – There’s a saying that I like to use called, “eat that frog.” Basically, if the first thing on your morning to-do list is to eat a frog, you can go about the rest of your day with the satisfaction of knowing that eating the frog was probably the worst thing that’s going to happen to you all day long. Your frog is your biggest task or perhaps the task you dread the most. If you just do it and get it out of the way, you’ll have a much better day and you’ll have been more productive.
  2. DELETE – We’re all pretty good at creating meaningless or unnecessary tasks. Take a look at your to-do list for tomorrow and get rid of all the tasks that don’t really have to be done. This will free up your time for more important things and boost your productivity.
  3. DEFER – Some tasks on your to-do list might not really have to be done right away. Perhaps you have to create a report, but it’s not due for another week. You could defer that task for a few days so that you can focus on more time-sensitive work that needs to get done.
  4. DELEGATE – As difficult as it could be to pass the reins to someone else (especially if you’re working for yourself), it might be your most impactful decision for getting control of your day. Find the activities that you do that are repetitive and time-consuming. When you have your list of tasks, hand them over to another person or find some program to automate them for you. The time you go back can then be spent on things that will improve your career or business.

Mastering the 4D’s Time Management

List and monitor your everyday activities to take advantage of this quick and effective time management technique. It’s the only way you can see how your time is spent and where it’s lost. To track your time, you can either use a manuscript timesheet, calendar, or time tracking software like Toggl. You will be on the road to becoming a time management ninja after you have learned how your time is spent and where the 4Ds fit into the picture.

Written by Christoph Nauer.
Christoph is a Brian Tracey certified Time Management Master.