Not another system?!

Who here has been trained in time management systems and – after weeks of implementation (and good intentions) – decided to go back to the basic systems you used before? This week in workshops and client conversations it’s been a theme that the best results often don’t come from big systems, but instead from applying one or two key principles to how we approach tasks and time.

My favourite combination is this:

  1. What’s the outcome?
  2. Use 20-minute time pockets to deliver

The first will become a welcomed habit: before any call, meeting or task, ask yourself which outcome you would like. Jumping heedlessly into your email inbox vs deciding the outcome of the next 20 minutes of email focus means everything for your productivity. The same goes for conversations.

Many different schools of thought, like the Pomodoro method, use this second principle because it’s hard to keep focus and concentration for longer than 20 minutes at a time. Therefore, we help our wellbeing and efficiency by planning for windows of time with specific outcomes – and enjoy a stretch, a glance out the window or a tea before you dive dedicatedly into the next window of time.

Would you like to have more time? Would you like to get more done?

YES and YES I hear you say. We all have 24 hrs in a day, and yet it is astounding how different results we want and get from each day. Most often, it doesn’t come down to the systems you have access to – but the mindset and principles you apply daily.

Have a go this week of applying the outcome question and the 20-minutes windows of time to your day and interactions, and let me know how you go. Enjoy!