Time is a finite resource. Everyone has the same amount of hours in the day and the same amount of days in the week. When your schedule is overbooked, the result is often subtle. Minutes and hours evaporate each day from your life.
Action Steps to Master Your Schedule
- Make a list
- Recognize and eliminate the unnecessary
- Group tasks
- Learn to say no
- Umbrella Each Daytm
- Choose only one calendar
What’s Important and What’s Not?
- 1. Do I need to do this task to become successful or fulfilled?
- 2. Why did I initially add this task to my life and is that reason still valid?
- 3. When was the last time I did it?
If the hours spent on a task outweigh the results, remove it from your schedule. Once you know what you need to do to be successful and lead a fulfilled life, you can move onto determining your set intention for each day of your week.
Time Management ─ Umbrella Your Daytm
You will save countless hours by grouping related tasks together into the same time frame; for instance, making all of your follow-up calls together or researching for long, uninterrupted blocks of time. To umbrella your tasks, you first need to list the recurring tasks that you perform weekly on a sheet of paper. Then you can begin to allocate time in your schedule for these recurring tasks.
Block tasks into similar types of activities; for instance, phone calls, paperwork, outside meetings. Divide your main job activities into five days:
* Planning day (Friday or Monday is optimum)
Set goals/intentions, line up the week
* Current large project
* Outside appointments, client meetings
* Client Follow-up and Research
* Administrative, reports & paperwork
Create specific days and chunks of time for related activities. If you need to research client files every week, schedule your research for the same day each week. The benefit of this is that when a client calls for information, you can safely tell them that you will be working on it on a specific day. I know you are thinking at this point, But they want it now! Trust me when I say this, clients care more about the quality of your work and whether you meet your promised delivery date more than they care about instant gratification. Quality work takes time.
Here is an example of one business person’s schedule using the Umbrella technique:
Busy Moms can also create their own weekly Umbrella System
This is an example of one of my real life mom clients schedule:
How to Say No to New Opportunities
Once you have your schedule set up with umbrella intentions, always pause before adding a new obligation to your agenda. Realize that if you need to add another recurring task to your schedule, you might need to let go of something else to keep your life in balance.
Whatever life you live, you can always benefit by determining in advance what you wish to accomplish each week and each day. Try creating an umbrella of intention before your week starts and watch how much more you will be able to accomplish with much less stress!
Dave Davis and me in the KUSI studio.