It’s no secret that I love all things time management related. I love my paper planner, and it brings me great joy to create a system or process to help things run more smoothly.
While I may be naturally bent toward time management and processes, everything I do does not come naturally. I’ve gained a lot of valuable tips, wisdom, and insight on managing my time by reading books.
Over the last few months I have read four books that have really helped shape my focus and systems that I put into practice each day. These books talk about the underlying need of finding your purpose or calling before you develop your time management system. However, I don’t think they go into enough detail to help you figure out your purpose.
They are still great resources for time management, though. And, I love the fact they at least recognize the need of understanding your purpose so you don’t waste your time trying to achieve goals that really aren’t what you are supposed to do.
1) The 5 AM Miracle by Jeff Sanders
I just finished reading this book. I first heard about it through a Scope by Crystal Paine, The Money Saving Mom. I’ve always wanted to get up early because I know there is value in getting things done early in the morning. However, I’m not really great about getting up.
One thing I learned from this book is that you can find your own 5 AM miracle. It can be 6 AM or 8 AM. It can be any time that works best for you. The idea is to wake up early enough that you can take care of the important things in your life first thing.
One thing this book provides is a clear step-by-step guide for helping the reader adjust their wake up time until they are getting up at their ideal time. Jeff also provides action steps at the end of each chapter so you can make firm plans from what you learned.
2) Make It Happen by Lara Casey
Make It Happen leads the reader to discover their “it”- or purpose in life. Lara shares the story of her life and how different experiences put together led her to where she is today.
This book also provides action steps at the end of each chapter. I love it when authors get their readers involved and gives them a chance to change their lives based on what they read.
Lara’s story is amazing. But, she would be the first to say we all have a story God is writing in our lives. We just need to pay attention to what’s going on and look for clues to the purpose God has created us for.
3) The Art of Work by Jeff Goins
Jeff is one of my favorite authors, although I’m not even sure how I first became aware of him. I’ve had this book for several months but just read it about a month ago.
Much like Lara Casey’s Make It Happen, this book challenges the reader to discover their life’s work. Jeff explains our life’s work is more than a job, it’s something that fuels our passion and gives us a reason to get up each morning.
This book was very easy to read, but it was very inspiring. Jeff shares stories of ordinary, everyday people and how they found their life’s work. Reading this book made me feel like anything is possible.
4) Getting Things Done by David Allen
Getting Things Done is the authoritative guide on time management, in my opinion. Ever since I learned about the Getting Things Done (GTD) method, I have been hooked.
I first read this book a few years ago, and to be honest, I didn’t quite understand it all. I knew, though, if I could figure it all out, I could change my life.
Thankfully he released a new edition last year that is much more reader friendly and is easier to understand. The GTD method is how I plan my time.
David does not talk about purpose, however once you learn the basic methodology, you can apply it to any purpose or goal you may have.
These are a few of my favorite books about managing time with purpose.
What are some of your favorite time management books?