If you’re like me, you often think, “oh, if only there were more hours in a day, or another day in the week, then I could get it all done.”
Even if there were, I probably wouldn’t get it all done.
We don’t really need more time, we need to make better use of the time we have.
The trick is not to get more done. The trick is to decide what you really need/want to be doing and eliminate the rest.
Successful people know how to focus their time and energy. Being productive relies on the ability to distinguish between tasks that move you closer to your goals and tasks that don’t.
Every time you’re about to take on another task, ask yourself: is this the best use of my time? How will this move me towards my goals?
The $25,000 productivity tip
In researching productivity for this post, I came across an amazing true story on how to be more productive.
One-hundred years ago, Charles Schwab was the president of the second largest steel company in the U.S.
Schwab was visited by management consultant Ivy Ledbetter Lee who offered to make Schwab’s management team 20% more productive.
Schwab asked Lee how much he would charge and Lee replied, “Follow my advice for 90 days, then pay me what you think my advice was worth.”
At the end of 90 days, Schwab paid Lee $25,000, saying it was the most profitable advice he’d ever received. In today’s dollars that might be around $500,000!
Here’s the advice, passed on to you for free!
- Each night make a list of the top six things you want to accomplish the next day.
- Number them from 1 – 6 in order of importance.
- Start working on task number one until you complete it. Do not move onto the next task until you complete the one before.
- Any tasks left at the end of the day get moved to the top of the next day’s list.
The list always stays with six items on it. The key is to prioritize and focus.
So that’s it. Try it for 90 days and see how your life changes.
“If we did all the things we are capable of doing we would literally astound ourselves.” Thomas A. Edison, American inventor and businessman