The art of time management is an involved practice. It doesn’t come naturally to everyone, and it often comes with roadblocks that deter people from optimally using their time. If you want to manage your time well, you need to be able to spot these traps and learn how to get out of them. It’s not rocket science. Most of these snares are intuitively spotted as red flags to productivity. Before we get too ahead of ourselves as expert time managers, let’s learn five time management traps that should be avoided at all costs.

1.     Focusing on the Small Things

Some people take the quote, “It’s the little things in life that matter most” a bit too seriously. Possessing gratitude is one thing, but fixating on trivial matters is where it gets a bit out of hand. Don’t put all your energy into the small stuff when you have more important things to focus on.

2.     Lacking a Clear Vision

To set goals for yourself, you need to have a sense of aim. What big goals do you have for your life? How large is the gap between where you are and where you want to be? What would you like to achieve? This is part of defining your vision, which you need to set in order to budget your time well.

3.     Perfectionism Gone Wrong

There is such a thing as being too perfect. We know, it’s hard to believe, but perfectionism can take a toll on you, and it can negatively impact your performance. If you’re too caught up in making something flawless, you may lose sight of the big picture.

4.     Prioritizing the Wrong Things

Have you ever found yourself spending hours on one project and only devoting 30 minutes to another? If you feel unbalanced with the way you distribute your time, you should check in with yourself. This can be an indicator that you’ve fallen into the time management trap of prioritizing the wrong things.

5.     Forgetting to Review Your Skills

It’s great to review your performance, but we’re talking about reviewing your time management skills.  It’s never a one-size-fits-all approach, so you may need to try different strategies in order to find one that works best for you. We can assure you that you’ll find your own way of managing your time, but it may not come to you right off the bat.

The next time you find yourself falling into a trap, try not to panic. None of these snares have quicksand foundations, so you’re not doomed if you fall into a pit every once and a while. The important thing is how you deal with it and how quickly you manage to get out!