What's the last excuse you gave for being late?
CareerBuilder survey found the main reasons people miss work are:
Traffic - 51% Oversleeping / Too tired - 54%
Bad Weather - 28%
Forgetting Something - 13%
Other common excuses were: having an appointment, a sick child, a school delay, car trouble, mass transit delays, a family emergency or illness, house problems, or waiting for a service person for repairs.
If you have used some of the excuses above or have different ones adding buffer time can help.
Skills You Will Need:
a) Time estimating
Before you do a task, guess how long it will take.
See if your estimate was close. Many people will consistently be on average too high or low.
Practice this with things like doing chores, work, hobbies, or cooking.
Over time, you will improve this skill.
b) Planning ahead or forethought
Break large tasks into smaller steps to identify possible problems.
Taking a few minutes before you start can save you hours of frustration later.
Consider the following before starting a project or doing a task:
What is my goal?
What materials do I need?
How long will this take?
Do I need assistance?
Where could things go wrong?
Should I do a little research first?
c) Comfort with trial and error
Adding buffer time sounds like it will be easy but like many daily habits, it will take months of practice before it comes naturally to you.
Build your own systems to add buffer time.
Example: when taking transit, always leave 15 min early per every hour of transit time.
It is common to add too little or too much buffer time at first. Over time, you'll find the sweet spot.
Doing your dishes takes 20 min most days and 30 min sometimes. Including buffer time: How much time should you reserve for doing dishes?
Tim is late for work often.
He lives 15 minutes from work.
I live so close to work, I will leave home at 8:45 am
I am only 5 minutes late sometimes
I usually sleep in until the last minute
Being late does not matter that much
Pablo is always on time
He lives 40 minutes from work.
In case of traffic, I will leave at 8 am
Most days I arrive to work at 8:50 am
My commute is not stressful because I listen to music and audiobooks
I want a good review and to be reliable
How much buffer time should Tim add to his schedule?
Decide being on time matters
Identify common reasons you are late
Estimate how long tasks will take
Add buffer time to the estimate
Adjust as needed
Find hobbies you can do if you are early to an event:
Listen to Music
Read a Book
Play a Game
Try it yourself!