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
Eli Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints 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.’
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!
Wikipedia has a good overview of TOC
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
Meeting with self – Morning
Previous meeting notes
Matters arising – any loose threads..?
Correspondence (Incoming External stuff)
- Check Church of Scotland News
- Tue: Schedule half an hour to process emails/ Evernote Inbox
- Wed: Check Presbytery Website
- Thu: Check Ascend Website
Review AYOA/ To Do List
- Review Projects & Tasks
- Is there anything that anyone else is waiting for?
- Who is on my mind that I will phone or message today?
At least half an hour now or scheduled for later today.
- Watch/ Read a MindTools article
- Watch a TED Talk
- Sharpen a saw! Schedule time to hone a skill
- Listen to a podcast
Meeting with self – Evening
- What am I grateful for?
- How have I made a difference for others today?
- What 6 Things will I prioritise tomorrow?
- Time to pray