Steve Miller sang, “Time keeps on slipping, slipping, slipping into the future”, but millions, if not billions, of people around the world feel time constantly slipping by us, into the past. We spend so much trying to track time, balance time, save time, and spend time more wisely, and sometimes we may even feel like failures for not managing to complete the super-human job of expanding time! I mean, how often have you tried to complete 12 hours of work in an 8 hour day?
These days, there are very few times in life where time management does not play a role. Even kids have manage time by stopping playing a game in order to watch a favorite television show. Of course, anyone who works, has children, or ever leaves the house has to learn to manage time effectively, and students have to juggle classes, homework, projects, extracurricular activities, friends, and other obligations. With the widespread need for time management, it only makes sense that we would look to Myers-Briggs® for help in understanding how we manage time and how we can improve our process.
If you are familiar with the MBTI®, you have probably heard the old stereotype, which states that Judging types finish things way ahead of time and Perceiving types procrastinate. This is a stereotype I discussed in a previous article on stereotypes of Judging and Perceiving, but I will address it here as well. Perceiving types are often, but not always, what is called “pressure-prompted”. This basically means they gain a burst of creative energy when a deadline is imminent that helps them get a tremendous amount of work done in a short period of time, and that energy is not available well in advance of a deadline. On the other hand, procrastination is the act putting something off for later, and I am here to tell you that ALL types procrastinate!
As an illustration, I am an INFJ, and I have been planning for several weeks to write time management descriptions for the 16 types today. Normally, when I write descriptions, I will begin at 7:30 or 8:00 am, but this morning the idea seemed a bit tedious, so I turned on the television and watched reruns of The Walking Dead (which I’ve already seen 4 times each) until I knew delaying any further would result in my evening being thrown off. As a Judging type, I was not waiting on creative energy. I just didn’t want to write at that moment, so I procrastinated! Because this phenomenon applies to all humans, you will notice that each time management type description has a section on what may cause an individual of that type to procrastinate. In fact, there is an entire book on this topic, Procrastination: Using Psychological Type Concepts to Help Students by Judith Provost. This book is one of the references I used in writing these descriptions.
As you peruse the time management type descriptions, you may also notice that almost every type’s description identifies a similar tip. This tip involves stepping back from work and taking time to evaluate or reevaluate priorities in an effort to destress and refocus time and projects. While each type may have a slightly different spin on this tip, it is one that all of us can use in daily life, especially when we become overwhelmed with our to-do lists.
If you would like to read more about Myers-Briggs® and time management, check out Out of Time: How the Sixteen Types Manage Their Time and Work by Larry Demarest. It provides two page descriptions of each type in time management and approaching work, and it is the other resource I used in writing the 16 descriptions.
As always, thanks for reading!