What must you do today?
What are you up to today….?
✅ What will you do today…?
✅ What difference will you make..?
✅ What will you learn..?
✅ What questions will you ponder..?
✅ Who will you ask for help and support..?
Martin Luther King Jr Day is marked on the Third Monday January – close to his birthdate 15 Jan 1929
He famously said, “I have a dream…”
Not, “I have a plan… an idea… a project…
With the emotion of a dream he led others to action, changed beliefs, ideas, and plans… but it all began with a dream…
What are your dreams… your hopes… for the World, the Church, your nation, your community, your family, your self…
Stephen Covey spoke of ‘First things First’, important things first. He borrowed Eisenhower’s Urgent/Important Matrix Michael Heppell and others speak of allocating time to the categories: ‘Me’, ‘Key’, ‘stuff’ – where ‘Key’ projects are the mission critical important ones… yet how often all the urgent stuff pushes out the important. ‘Me’ times – are, well it says it on the tin doesn’t it – times for YOU – and that’s important too.
“Thanks, I’ll try to remember to do that at the end of the month”
Mmm… why leave it to you memory…!
Capture ideas and ’things to do’ when they first crop up!
iOS users – try:
‘Hey Siri, remind me to…. tomorrow/ next Tuesday/at the end of the month’
Put it in your diary, or notes
The late Eli Goldratt (1947-2011) was a scientist who building on models and ideas from the natural world and turned the focus of his work to the leadership of change. He coined the phrase ‘Theory of Constraints’ – which at its simplest says ‘No system is operating at maximum potential, if it were there would be infinite and perfect output, there will always be at least one limiting factor, or constraint, be it machinery, a person, policy, belief, behaviour or whatever. Any system is only as strong as its weakest link. To improve efficiency focus on overcoming the most significant constraint, work on that until it’s no longer the biggest bottleneck. Identify new biggest constraint, and repeat.’
If you are making widgets – in theory you can create an infinite number of widgets – but there are constraints: the size of the factory, the availability of raw materials, the number of workers, their competence…. And you can improve efficiency by reducing the constraints – building a larger factory, training staff, researching other sources of raw materials and so on…
In the Church context in theory our ministry and mission could impact every soul in the world. But there are constraints: number of leaders, ministers, teachers to motivate and inspire, availability of human, financial and material resources, competence of human resource, and external constraints in the willingness to engage, competing pressures on time and so on…
Goldratt also said that many constraints are unwittingly set up when we change a part of the system but omit to undo the rules required to uphold the old process! Have you ever seen that around the Church..? But we have always done it that way! The XYZ committee has to approve that because 30 tum years ago it was remitted to them…. We created the rules, laws, acts – and we can change them…
Wikipedia has a good overview of TOC
Goldratt also taught the importance of exploring the benefits and challenges not only of taking a particular action to reduce the constraints – but of exploring the benefits and challenges of NOT TAKING a particular action. This is helpfully – and amusingly illustrated in the video below.
In the context of your Church experience what are the big bottlenecks? Can you think of times when old rules are carried into new processes?
All Zoomed out! Lots of online meetings on various platforms filling our days. But the most important meeting is a low tech offline one!
Are you making time for a meeting with yourself? Have you put it in your calendar and blocked off time to review, plan and priorise your day?
Below is my ‘Agenda’ for Morning and Evening meeting with self – and God.
I’m a big fan of AYOA and have used it for years to keep track of my projects and tasks – it may work well for you – it’s very visual, actually quite fun, and integrates with mind-mapping. The important thing is to have a trusted system – somewhere beyond your head to capture and process all the things that you have to do
Matters arising – any loose threads..?
At least half an hour now or scheduled for later today.