I Think I Wrote This 20 Years Ago …

I present this without editing. DVDs?  RAM?  Computer memory was a little more precious then …

The Top 10 of Time & Life Management

By Jerry D. Posner
Improving your time/life management skills is a piece of cake… but you have to really want to eat the cake!

1. THE TO-DO LIST IS A MUST. This is the easiest way I know of to accomplish more in less time. Simply write down the activities and tasks that you want to work on. Daily or weekly. Check them off when you complete them. “List the work … and work the list!” When you’re serious about getting more done, the to-do list is your constant companion, friend and ally! 

2. KNOW YOUR W.I.I.F.M. “What’s in it for me?” Choose a few answers to these questions: Why do I need or want to get more done in less time? What are the benefits to me, my team, family, friends, community …? Make a list. Read your list every day for self-motivation, passion-amplification and memory-refreshment.

3. SET, REVISE AND REVIEW MEDIUM AND LONG TERM GOALS. The “to-do” list is for daily or weekly tasks and projects. The goals on this list are for a month to many years into the future. Help yourself make choices that are consistent with your “big picture” objectives. The more passionate we are about the goals, the better. No strong desire? Weak commitment? Look for the blockage … examine the evidence … review the “wiifms.” Bad goal? Change it! You can have ongoing behavior, attitude and emotional goals in addition to task type goals. Keep an ongoing “to-feel” list. Or a “to-believe” list. The magic is in the daily attention to your lists. The daily reminder is the key.

4. KNOW AND DEFEAT THE OPPONENT. Who or what are the demons that nick your enthusiasm? Procrastination? Pessimism? Perfectionism? Paranoia? Pizza? Identify the opponent, and learn how to be the victor! For example, notice your procrastination, read books about procrastination, visualize yourself overcoming procrastination, write a procrastination journal. “Yeah, that’s good. I’ll start that tomorrow!” Eat the foods that give you energy and avoid the foods that put you to sleep (unless, or course, you WANT to take a nap). Visualize victory. Imagine your success.

5. MANAGE YOUR STRESS BY CHOOSING GRATITUDE. Or choose neutral. You can choose to be philosophical. Forgiveness is always a choice. So is a humorous interpretation of events. Some like to use the “don’t sweat the small stuff” reminder. The big idea is to become more responsive and less reactive, or in other words: more aware, conscious, in control and therefore, more efficient! Life is less stressful when we make better choices. And sometimes we can choose between stress and peace! Not always … but sometimes.

6. DON’T INVENT TROUBLE. Isn’t it a thrill to realize that some of our problems are self-created? Isn’t it great when we stop! So, ask yourself: Am I making it up? And, if so, WHY? Unconscious habit? Do I have counterproductive interpretations or beliefs that need changing? Why would I choose to make myself irritable? Can I stop?

7. UPGRADE. Would a better computer make your work go faster? Do you deserve a little more RAM? Upgrade tools and equipment, upgrade environment, upgrade confidence, upgrade attitudes, habits, etc. Sometimes even a small upgrade can make a huge difference in your productivity.

8. REWARD YOURSELF. Consider your needs and how you can get them met. Some people use the self-reward as a self-bribe. Some call it a self-motivator. Don’t you like to have a vacation or a new DVD player as something to look forward to? A small reward in the middle of a heavy work day could certainly have positive impact. Don’t use donuts, for example, if you’re going to feel guilty about it for the rest of the day. And be smart with your shopping — don’t create stress by rewarding yourself with something that puts you into debt! A one-minute gratitude break, mini-vacation visualization exercise, or quick walk outside could improve your mood and your work output! The self-promise of a large reward (material, emotional, spiritual) for a large project well done might be the motivator you need to move it forward.

9. TREAT EVERY CUSTOMER, CLIENT, VENDOR AND COWORKER WITH KINDNESS, COMPASSION AND EMPATHY. Even the difficult ones. This will potentially save you YEARS of time.


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