Seeking inspiration? Look no further. The perfect people to turn to are those who have successfully tackled time management in their own lives and gone on to do great things. Just take a look at Warren Buffett, Sheryl Sandberg or Bill Gates.
According to billionaire investor Warren Buffett, time management is all about saying “no.” By turning down the requests or asks of other people, Buffett has more time to focus on things that matter most in his life. For Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO and single mother of two, time management is incredibly important in her life — professionally and personally. That’s why she’s come to understand the importance of prioritizing tasks and focusing only on a few projects at a time. “You can only do so much. There are five more projects you want to do, but you pick the three that are really going to matter,” she’s credited for saying.
And when it comes to Microsoft’s Bill Gates, it’s all about decision making — “Don’t make the same decision twice. Spend time and thought to make a solid decision the first time so that you don’t revisit the issue unnecessarily,” Gates once said.
Every successful entrepreneur or business leader has their own way of managing time. And it’s important to figure out what works best for you. For more inspiration, here are 15 time management quotes from successful men and women around the world.
1. “The difference between successful people and others is how long they spend time feeling sorry for themselves.” — Barbara Corcoran
2. “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.” — Steve Jobs
3. “The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.” — Warren Buffett
4. “You can only do so much. There are five more projects you want to do, but you pick the three that are really going to matter, and you try to do those really well, and you don’t even try to do the others.” — Sheryl Sandberg
5. “We think, mistakenly, that success is the result of the amount of time we put in at work, instead of the quality of time we put in.” — Arianna Huffington
6. “I think the hardest part of aging really is recognizing the time that you wasted and the things that you worried about that really didn’t matter…. That’s really the only regret that I have.” — Oprah Winfrey
7. “Don’t make the same decision twice. Spend time and thought to make a solid decision the first time so that you don’t revisit the issue unnecessarily. If you’re too willing to reopen issues, it interferes not only with your execution but also with your motivation to make a decision in the first place. After all, why bother deciding an issue if it isn’t really decided?” — Bill Gates
8. “One reason so few of us achieve what we truly want is that we never direct our focus; we never concentrate our power. Most people dabble their way through life, never deciding to master anything in particular.” — Tony Robbins
9. “Lots of companies don’t succeed over time. What do they fundamentally do wrong? They usually miss the future. I try to focus on that: What is the future really going to be?” — Larry Page
10. “So the pie isn’t perfect? Cut it into wedges. Stay in control, never panic.” — Martha Stewart
11. “I’m just always looking forward. I spend very little time, looking backward.” — Gary Vaynerchuk
12. “The question I ask myself like almost every day is, ‘Am I doing the most important thing I could be doing?’ Unless I feel like I’m working on the most important problem that I can help with, then I’m not going to feel good about how I’m spending my time.” — Mark Zuckerberg
13. “If we think long term we can accomplish things that we wouldn’t otherwise accomplish. Time horizons matter. They matter a lot.” — Jeff Bezos
14. “If you don’t have time for the small things, you won’t have time for the big things.” — Richard Branson
15. “Conditions are never perfect. ‘Someday’ is a disease that will take your dreams to the grave with you. Pro and con lists are just as bad. If it’s important to you and you want to do it ‘eventually,’ just do it and correct course along the way.” — Tim Ferriss