Are you one of those individuals that suffer from feeling like your to-do lists are getting longer not shorter and are not sure what to do about it? By learning how to set priorities we sharpen our time management skills. The benefit – achieving our goals more effectively. If you’re looking for effective ways to get more done – in a shorter amount of time – especially to free up time for the special things in life, this article’s for you!
Visualize and prioritize. A great visual way to set priorities is to use the Eisenhower Decision Matrix. This system was popularized by Stephen Covey in his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. This decision making matrix is to help individuals make a distinction between what’s important or urgent and what’s not.
Important activities: have a great significance or value and are likely to have a profound effect on the success of your goal. They contribute significantly to our desired objective and should be set to high priority. They come with long-term impact and help us to reach our goals.
Urgent activities: require some form of action or attention. They scream NOW but usually produce short-term impact and may or may not relate to our big-picture objectives. These urgent activities place pressure on us daily. They steal our time and energy and often mislead us into thinking that they are important.
In order to meet objectives effectively, we need to learn how to prioritize intentionally rather than reactively to the urgent tasks that may be on, or off, our to-do list. Taking the time to prioritize visually will result in getting more done and it will require less energy to do it.
Effective Ways to Get More Done
Now you can mitigating the unknown by following some of these time gaining tips. Here are nine simple ways to be more productive and get through those daily tasks:
- Plan plan plan. Make planning your priority. The things that get scheduled are certainly the things that get done. Plan for your week and plan for your day – every day. Rather than tracking what needs to be done and reacting you will look at your day and already know what needs to be accomplished. This is best done the evening before or early in the morning before the world wakes up.
- Set priorities during your daily planning. Eliminate unproductive to-do items from your daily list. This will make room for those tasks that will contribute to your objective and big picture goals.
- Know your high-energy time. Working more effectively comes from working when our energy is at its peak. Peak energy = peak performance.
- Create lists. Create lists and then prioritize them using a system that works for you, perhaps it’s the Eisenhower Decision Matrix. Lists are your blueprint for focus.
- Choose one thing daily that will help you reach your objective. This is your priority. Do this one thing before anything else – especially checking your emails.
- Schedule and sort email. It isn’t always easy or possibly to schedule a time to look at your emails. If you can, you will see that it results in much more concentration and focus. Quickly sort through your emails categorizing them as follows: Important, Urgent, Later, Trash and deal with them in that order.
- Create and use an agenda for your meetings. Agenda are an excellent way to keep your meeting on track and ideally on time. If you aren’t the meeting organizer, you can request an agenda which may prompt action by the organizer to create one.
- Send and request simplified emails. Sending only bite-sized, efficient, bullet-pointed emails and request the same format in return.
- Write out your clear objectives before returning a phone call. This will result in more effective, time-saving communication.
Top 3 take-aways:
3. Create lists
If you’re looking for effective ways to get more done in less time, our interactive and printable checklist* will help you get on track. These are some of the reasons RE/MAX sells more homes. Planning and having systems in place to effectively and efficiently accomplish more in less time.
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