So your alarm went off this morning and you hit snooze a few extra times. Fast-forward and your whole morning was thrown off, eventually making you 10 minutes late for an important meeting at work. Sound familiar? I know that I’ve been guilty of this myself in the past, but I done my best to learn to control my tardiness. Being on time shows whomever you’re meeting that you are serious about your career and that you care to get the job done. Being chronically late comes off as apathetic and unprofessional. To avoid that, I’m here with some handy tips to help you ensure that you’re always on time from here on out.
Keep scrolling for eight tips and tricks to help you get up early and put your best foot forward…
1. Plan to be early.
Never plan to be on time, plan to be early. That means that if you do end up running “late,” you’ll actually be right on time. I also like to set my clocks five minutes fast and enter important meetings into my phone’s calendar 15-30 minutes earlier than they actually are. That way your phone will give you a notification to keep you ahead of schedule. You know how the saying goes: If you’re not five minutes early, you’re late!
2. Fill up your tank.
Get in the habit of filling up your gas tank when it’s still ¼ full. There’s nothing worse than being in a hurry and jumping in the car only to remember that you have to make a pit stop at the closest gas station.
3. Do it the night before.
Do as many things at night to prepare for work (or whatever else you have planned) the next day. Pack your lunch, lay out your outfit, and prepare breakfast like overnight oats or setting smoothie ingredients aside. It also helps to have a designated spot for everything. That way you aren’t scrambling to find your keys or cellphone when you’re running out the door.
4. End tasks on time.
Ending tasks on time I just as important as starting them on time. Otherwise, one long meeting can turn into a vicious cycle where you are late the rest of the day after that. Put a start and an end time for everything in your calendar. That way if your meeting or task ends early, you have that much more collected time to get ahead on you work.
5. Plan for setbacks.
It’s very seldom that my day goes exactly as planned (and that’s not always a bad thing). Sometimes a meeting will run late or I find myself chatting a little bit too long in the office. Starting your day early can allow a little wiggle room when it comes to setbacks. Remember: Life can be unpredictable, but at least you’re doing the best you can to prepare for it!
6. Embrace downtime.
Oftentimes it feels as if I’m running from one meeting to another with very little time in between. When I do have moments to myself throughout the day, I use that time to clear my mind or catch up on emails and text messages. Finding comfort in downtime and not rushing from one thing to the next is more important than you think. Embrace downtime so that you can start your next task with a clear and focused mind.
7. Set an alarm.
It’s obvious that you need to set an alarm in order to wake up, but have you thought of setting one for when you need to leave? That way, there’s less time for dillydallying in the morning. Once you hear the alarm you know it’s time to wrap up whatever it is you’re doing and hop in the car.
8. Work in advance.
Being ahead of schedule on your to-do list can help alleviate any end-of-week stress. If you can, start completing tasks a week ahead of time so that you have optimum time to work on them. Plus you’ll have enough time to revise your tasks or projects before they’re actually due.
How do you stay punctual?
Let me know your tricks in the comments!