Chris Croft
Tips of the Month – Archive

Time management Tip 22



Four levels of time management

Self discipline and assertiveness

Making goals into action

Did you ‘achieve’ and ‘enjoy’ today?

Poem: My hands were busy through the day

New year’s resolutions that work

Junk calls

Looking forward 5 years

Action versus activity

My top ten

Personality Drivers

Bunch of grapes

Ideas of beating procrastination

Putting up a sign

Money won’t make you happy

Interruptions – some ideas

Interruptions - less time or later

Beating procrastination at Christmas

Planning the year ahead

Examples of efficient systems

Deciding what’s important

Laziness – the root of all problems

Why box 1 is bad

Take time to…

Welcome to the afterlife

Writing everything down

The objective of time management is to work out what's important, and then spend as much time as you can on it.  The unimportant things need to be squeezed / delegated / not done in order that the important things can get the time that they deserve.

Most of time management theory is about how to squeeze the unimportant things down (negotiating, having efficient systems, doing things less well maybe, etc) but all this comes to nothing if you haven't clearly worked out what's important and what isn't.  Which is what this tip is about!

Nearly everything has to be done - but that doesn't make it important. Life is full of trivial things that have to be done. I would like to suggest three tests for importance:

  1. How much effect does it have on the future? Particularly in a positive way: does it contribute to your goals, does it help get you to where you want to get to?
  2. Is it something you would ideally delegate? If you could press a magic button and have it done for you, would you press the button, or would you say "No, I want to do it myself!"
  3. Would you miss it if it was gone? If you were no longer able to ride a bicycle, or no longer needed to eat, or no longer had to do a monthly report, would you miss it?

Try the above on...

Cooking dinner.
Listening to music.
Reading a bedtime story to your children. Cleaning your car.
Food shopping
Shopping for a luxury that you like (in my case second hand CDs).
Visiting your parents.
Your next holiday.

Do the three questions work? I hope so.

If they do, you can now try them on the things you've got lined up for today, both at work and at home.

Hoping this helps,

Onwards and upwards.

Chris Croft..

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