Remembering Appointments and How To Be On Time
One aspect of time management is remembering appointments and other special obligations. It is very important to remember such things because it influences the way one is viewed by others. The following strategies may be used to remember meetings with professors or bosses, doctor's appointments, study group meetings, and other obligations. For more information on these strategies, see the complete descriptions in the Memory page.
Break the Normal Pattern
This is the "tie the string around your finger" strategy. Think or do something outlandish and out of the ordinary to trigger your memory of the appointment. For example, tie a penny on your pen to remember to meet with the bank loan officer. Put a band-aid on your hand to remember a doctor's appointment. Tell yourself that when you see a friend, it will remind you about an appointment.
Repeat the details about the appointment (who, where, when) over and over again.
Rhymes and Songs
Make up a rhyme or song to remember the details about the appointment. It is often easier to remember information when it is set to a well-known tune.
Leave notes for yourself everywhere: books, mirror, doors, refrigerator, steering wheel, backpack, purse, wallet, car keys, computer, and microwave. Post-it notes work very well on most surfaces. Use paper and tape if post-it's don't stick.
Try visualizing some picture associated with the appointment in order to trigger your memory. To be effective, make the image as vivid as possible, using colors, sounds, sights, smells, and movement. For example, to remember a meeting with the Art tutor at 3:00, picture a painter with a bright red smock, screaming as she throws purple, blue and yellow paint on a canvas in the shape of a three.
How to be on Time
There are few things that annoy professors, bosses, and professionals more than people who arrive late for classes, meetings, and appointments. Arriving late to a test or sales presentation is unthinkable. It is both rude and disrespectful to enter a classroom or meeting room late. It gives the impression that one thinks the event is not important enough to warrant punctuality. Habitual tardiness leads others to view one negatively. The tips outlined below are intended to help people become more punctual.
Set clocks ahead
Set clocks and watches ahead the number of minutes one is typically late. For example, if you are usually five minutes late, set clocks and watches to run five minutes fast. Then try to forget they are running fast so you don't think you have extra time.
Set two alarms
If you have trouble getting up in the morning, set two alarms. One should ring about five minutes after the other. For early appointments that are really important, set one non-electric alarm clock in case electricity goes out overnight.
Buy alarm clocks without a snooze button as these make it too easy to stay in bed.
Attend to your health
It is easier to be on time when you are well rested and healthy.