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Hi, Is this habit wasting your time?
September 07, 2009
Hi there to all our loyal and our new members. 189 new members joined in the last month.
Welcome to the Time Creation community.
In this Edition:
Without realizing it I was wasting hours everyday. I had fallen into the habit over the years. Most others were doing the same as I was. But when my coach asked me about saving time it suddenly became clear how much time I was wasting.
This was back in 2002 and I was working in the IT industry. I had just started my coaching program (this time I was the client not the coach) and we were talking about the challenges in my job, one of which was not enough time. The simple question "what could you do to save time at work?" sparked a flurry of thoughts and the BFO (blinding flash of the obvious) about my bad habit that wasted massive amounts of time.
I was starting each day by opening my email - thinking that I would deal with the new emails in my inbox before I got started on my important tasks. In doing this I was making four mistakes at once!
By opening my email as soon as I got to work my time, my day and my week was controlled by email.
Mostly the emails were about issues or problems and they required me to do something to address them. Within a short time I was feeling pressured and anxious. It was still early in the morning and already I was feeling the pressure and stress. Bad move!
My thinking was "check if there are any important emails and deal with the emails I can respond to quickly. Once that's done I can concentrate on the important stuff". BUT I was wasting the most productive time of the day with problems and unimportant things. And often I didn't get to the important stuff until late in the day (if at all). I was making these four mistakes ALL AT ONCE!
With the support of my coach I created a new productive habit that I have continued for the last 7 years. I start my day by looking at my weekly plan, not my email. I don't even open email until my first high impact task for the day is complete!
Now I am the coach that helps others with this challenge. Changing this habit saved me a minimum 5 hours a week and 100s of my clients have saved at least that amount of time each week. Most people though do find it very hard to change this habit. They have come to believe that email is a vital, critical communication tool and they need to check it constantly to be sure they haven't missed anything important. I like to challenge that thinking.
If a task is urgent and critical would you as a leader only address it using email?
And even if email was part of the process to address this urgent issue, would email be the most important of the communication tools? I think not!
I suggest it is the easy way out. You don't have to think or be proactive if you just answer the emails that arrive for the day. Perhaps it is really a form of procrastination.
Try this Time Creation routine:
In doing this I have prepared myself for a productive day and accomplished a HIGH IMPACT, motivating task. I feel energized!
YOU can get the same benefit I did (like an extra hour of productivity a day) from using the routine above. The key is to plan the time (no distractions like phone or email) and complete a task that will give you a sense of achievement. This may be something you enjoy OR something you have been avoiding. It doesn't matter as long as you feel GREAT when it is complete. Here are the steps again.
Links you should visit
1) Check out my new video on time management tips, myths and a story.
2) Time Management Central.net time management videos to inspire you to use your time wisely.
English - a language for the insane!
Have some fun today :-)
Time Management Videos -- Free video presentations on time management.
Time Management Forms -- Download and use our time management forms to get control of your time
Time Management Articles -- A comprehensive library of time management articles with information that really saves you time.
Time Management Planners -- A summarized review of leading time management planners.
Thanks for spending your valuable time with us.
Michael, Graham and the Time Creation Team
© 2008 Time Creation Coaching. All rights reserved. Please pass the above in its entirety to anyone you wish.
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