While on vacation in Scotland and Ireland, I spent some time re-reading the book that helped me get turned around a couple years ago in terms of focus and productivity – working on stuff that matters versus being a slave to my inbox and other people’s agendas instead of my own.
Leo Babauta wrote Zen To Done because he couldn’t find a perfect system to help him accomplish the work that mattered to him. He took bits and pieces of different methodologies which he credits fully in his e-book.
In the past couple weeks, in spite of being in 25 airports in 45 days, we worked really hard to get caught up, and I’d not only like to stay that way, but to step even harder on the gas to move even further into proactivity with our business.
One of my favorite exercises from the book was – on Sunday evening or Monday morning – to establish the week’s “big rocks” (a term the author got from Steven Covey) – those things that are most important to accomplish in the week ahead. This helps you not fall victim to the constant drum of urgency from the inbox.
You shouldn’t list more than a half-dozen or so. Hopefully, at least one of them relates to your larger goals (this week, mine are the master spreadsheet and getting my damn book exec summary to Michele). Schedule them now.
I’m going to print and post this weekly list on my monitor or in my hotel room if I’m traveling.
Then, each day – choose your three most important tasks for the day and schedule time to work on them.
These three tasks will – at some point – include your week’s big rocks. That way, by week’s end, all your most important tasks will be finished.
Try and get each day’s most important tasks done early – when you have the most energy.
When you’re working on them, close your email and turn off your phone.
Finish one. Take a break. Start on another.
When I was doing this regularly, I’d never been more productive. I’d never felt better. Over time, I fell away from it.
I’m starting fresh today. If you’re struggling with separating the truly important from the merely urgent, why not try it with me?
Send your weekly list to someone who will help hold you accountable (not me) – like I do with Dee and Ryan.
Even though our business has grown by 50% this year, this system scales perfectly to help you get the important stuff done.
Have a great week. I hope you work on stuff that matters.