Time Management for Bad Days

Time Management for bad days

You know those happy days when everything is going your way, the sun is shining, the birds are chirping and you are just really energized, excited and able to get things done? Yeah, well this article isn’t about those days. This is as the title says, an article about time management for bad days.

Time Management can be rather easy on a good day once you have learned the basics and established good habits. The real test though is remaining productive on days when things just aren’t going your way, and that’s what this article is about.

Here are five things I recommend doing to remain productive on days when you just want to close the curtains and curl up in bed (or rip up your manuscripts and howl at the moon):

1. Figure out the most important tasks for the day and just get them done

If you woke up on the wrong side of the bed, it is highly unlikely that you are going to conquer the moon today while writing a best-selling novel, restoring peace between two nations and saving some innocent bystanders in the process. (Although it is all still possible even on the gloomiest of days)

Most likely, if you are in a bad mood, you are going to get less done than usual so best make sure that the important stuff gets done first. Look at your daily To-Do List, identify the three most important tasks that will make you feel accomplished by the time the sun sets, and get those three things done. Even if you are unable to accomplish anything else that day, this alone will give you a reason to relax and enjoy your evening coffee with a clear conscious.

2. Schedule some Downtime  

If your body is feeling agitated, irritated and simply off, it could be an internal sign that you need to relax and recharge. Do yourself a favor and schedule in some downtime, make time for yourself. Read a fun book, have coffee with your funniest friend at your favorite hangout, sit back with your legs up on the table and close your eyes. Don’t feel guilty to take time to relax, you are not wasting time or being unproductive, you are just recharging your energy so that you can do much more in less time.

3. Downsize your work load 

Besides your three main tasks, in order to get things done when down with the Monday blues, try halving your workload. For example, if you usually write 8 pages a day, commit to writing just 4 pages on such a day. If you usually make 10 sales a day, commit to just getting 5 sales done. Many of us just feel like doing nothing and end up wasting the entire day. Committing to doing less actually helps you get things done on such days. Don’t feel guilty about setting a smaller goal for such a day, it’s better than getting nothing done because you were in a bad mood.

4. Avoid Negative people like a plague

If you have an appointment with someone who is difficult to deal with, you may want to consider rescheduling. On days when you are ready to snap, you really don’t want to be walking into a hostile situation and end up losing it. On such days, it’s better to just close your office door and work alone…for the safety of others, of course.

5. Overdose on sources of inspiration

If you are like me, you probably have a PC loaded with inspirational quotes, videos, audios and pictures. Well if you are having a bad day, you will need to probably need the entire collection. Read your quotes collection, watch the inspiration videos, look at the pictures of your goals and pump yourself up to get things done, no matter how bad the day gets. Personally, I choose to recite extra Qur’an on days when I am feeling down and reflect on the meanings, as it calms me down and gives me hope. You should try it too.

Do all of this and I’m sure your irritating days can remain productive. Maybe not as productive as usual, but productive enough.

(Written on one of those days)

Learn more about how to manage your time effectively with our exclusive best selling eBook Getting The Barakah: An Islamic Guide to Time Management. Hundreds of readers have radically improved their Time Management with this eBook. Now it is your turn!

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Posted by Ismail Kamdar

Ismail Kamdar is the Founder of Islamic Self Help, author of over a dozen books, faculty manager of IOU, and a freelance writer.


Tabassum Mosleh

Salam ‘alaykum ustadh, great advice ma sha Allah.

As Salam Alaykum Sheikh,
I love this article. Shows me this kind of attitude that gives you even in the worst days a bit of hope by doing a bit I instead of doing nothing. It shows me the importance of scheduling time for myself and care for myself and that’s a necessary fact more Muslim should be aware of. Most Muslim look at these things aleykum selam being unislamic but the Islam teaches us such a balanced way of live full of Productivity. Thank you for teaching us this balance! jazaakAllahu khayra

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