Punctuality is a quality most appreciated and admired, but more often than not people find it difficult to manage being punctual. Not only does this create a bad impression on others, especially if it is related to your career or emergency situations, it also makes life stressful and crammed on account of poor time management.
Being punctual or on time is not complicated or rocket-science. A few simple and easy-to-follow tips as listed below will definitely help in ensuring your punctuality improves, they are also not set in stone, you can think up many creative ways to improve your timing and thus, your credibility amongst your circle of family, friends, colleagues and others.
- Always arrive early instead of just being on time - Make it a point to plan your travel beforehand and plan to get to your destination early rather than being just on time. Planning ahead and allowing ample time to get to your appointment or destination will allow you to make any adjustments that may be become necessary depending upon circumstances.
- Prepare a time management chart - Take stock of all your daily activities and work and time yourself for about a week to see how much time you spend on each task and how many of these tasks are repetitive or periodic. Based upon this, prepare a time schedule, where you allot time to each activity, put it up in places around your home and workplace so that you can always remember how much time is on hand for completion of a particular task and work accordingly.
- Know the correct time - Make sure all your watches and clocks are set to the same exact time. There is no point in setting your clock or watch 5-10 minutes early and then not follow the set time since you're aware that the time is running ahead anyway and you have more time before you can get started on your task. Setting an earlier time might be helpful for those people who are disciplined and make it a point to do things by the clock, but not for someone who has a chronic problem with being behind schedule or unpunctual.
- Make preparations beforehand - If you're due to make an early start in the morning and need to be elsewhere, like an appointment or an interview where being on time is absolutely essential, prepare yourself the night before. Lay out your clothes, iron them, etc the previous evening, put all your necessary papers and files in your carrying case and keep it ready so you just need to pick it up and go in the morning. Go to sleep early, set your alarm for at least 30 minutes ahead of your usual wake-up time.
- Punctuality is important - Always keep in mind that other people's perception about you is influenced by your behavior. If you're chronically late, you will be labeled as lazy and undisciplined. Lateness will harm your reputation, career, family and social life.
Having realized how important it is to be punctual, get organized, learn to manage your time profitably and make sure you're following the clock -- the one showing the correct and exact time, that is. You'll find that you actually end up with spare time on your hands!