The misconception of time management

All of us have busy lives and ministries. So how do we balance all our personal and public roles and responsibilities?

SURPRISINGLY, the answer is not in time management, which itself is a misconception. We cannot manipulate time, but only manage ourselves in relation to time; that is, how we spend it. ‘Time management’ actually means ‘self-management’; managing ourselves within the time frame granted to us toward biblical priorities, values and God-given purposes.

Time management is not just about our schedule, diary or calendar, but our values and priorities. How we spend our time reflects what is most important to us.

Based on Scripture, what should be some of the top priorities of leaders?

Personal priorities as a Christian:

  • Our time with God
  • Our qualitative time with our spouse
  • Our qualitative time with our children
  • Our intentional time fulfilling our calling and exercising our gifts

Public priorities as a Christian leader:

  • Time fulfilling the specific vision God’s placed on our heart
  • Time loving, feeding and building people
  • Time developing leaders and equipping people for ministry
  • Time investing into our personal development

Here are 10 principles to effectively manage our lives and time:

  • Conduct a ruthless self-appraisal on your current use (and habits) of time
  • Confess past failure and failures to God
  • Seek help or guidance from an experienced leader to help you sort out your use of time
  • Surrender to and integrate your life around the Lordship of Jesus
  • Prioritise your time and structure your diary and schedule around your priorities
  • Say ‘no’ to the unimportant and ‘yes’ to the important
  • Budget (plan) your time as you would your money
  • Organise and schedule your work by planning ahead
  • Set aside regular time to think and plan
  • Stick to your plan

It is said of Martin Luther that he only had two days on his calendar: today and that day. May we live each day in the light of that day.

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