10 Timely Tips to be on Time

time management tips


We have the best of intentions on timeliness.  We want to be on time. We don’t want to wait.  But even in the best of cases, we slip up over and over again.


1.  Set all your clocks using a standard, such as your phone, the radio or the television.   With all the same time, there is no question about what time you are leaving your home or office.

2. Know how long it takes to travel to your destination, and then add on 15 minutes.  We all acknowledge Murphy’s Law, that things tend to go wrong in the best of cases. Adding a little buffer time in makes it easier to be on time.  Traffic and weather are not in our control, so make a plan that gives way to potential situations.

3. Establish a routine for self care includes sufficient time to dress, shower and get out of the house.   If it really takes an hour to get ready, be sure to give yourself an hour to get ready.

4. Be mindful of where you time lapses occur.  These are the tasks that make you late, like drying your hair, picking out your clothes,  not having gas in the car.   Awareness of where the obstacles are makes for big change.

5. Set a boundary for last minute tasks just before leaving.  You probably can’t take that last phone call, read that last email or do that one last thing.

6. Be prepared if you are early. Have a fun magazine in the car you never get to read.  Make a list of phone calls to do if you are early. I use that time to confirm appointments.

7. Give yourself space if you are not on time.  Call your person and tell them you will be late so they can use the time wisely too.

8.  Have a mindset of preparation for a busy day. Set your clothes out the night before, get your bag packed and by the door, and have your phone charging to you are read to go.  Check your calendar the night before to know your schedule for the day.

9. Use an alarm to give you a 15 minute warning before leaving.  Our kids to better when we give them a 15 minute warning and using this strategy for ourselves makes life easier too.  If others make you late, give them a 15 minute warning.

10.  Getting to be timely takes time and practice.  Give yourself the gift of being good to yourself if you have a few “oops” days.  Get back on track right away and make a mental note of where things went off track.

What are your tricks to be on time?  It takes being aware of the challenges of timeliness each day to be sure you are on time.

5 replies
  1. Linda Samuels
    Linda Samuels says:

    Theses are fabulous tips for being on time. #5 resonates with me. I set a timer to ring 5-10 minutes before I need to leave. It helps me to wrap up and transition to walking out the door. It also helps me to fully focus on what I was doing before it’s time to stop. The boundary of having the ringer alert me is very helpful.

  2. Janet Barclay
    Janet Barclay says:

    #2 and #6 go together well. I used to be an early bird most of the time, but I got tired of waiting around for others to arrive, doors to open, and so on, and I’ve started to slip in the other direction. If I make a point of bringing along some reading material, then those extra minutes can become “me” time – and who couldn’t use more of that? 🙂

  3. Brandi
    Brandi says:

    I love these tips–especially the 15 minute warning. I have to work hard to be timely, and one of the most important things for me is to gather all my things in one place the night before. Often I make a list and stick it on the door to remind me of what I need to take with me. That way I don’t waste time running back in the house for things.

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