Updated: Dec 29, 2019
To me, it seems that there are two types of people. Those that are always "busy" and those who accomplish more yet appear "less busy".
The word "busy" has always seemed odd to me. Determining just how busy you really are is a personal measure. One persons list of seemingly overwhelming tasks, might be perceived by others as easy to accomplish. Listening to my kids tell me they are "too busy to do their homework", reminds me of times when riding the bike, or playing with lego was so much more important then spending time on homework, and I, just as them was too "busy" to finish the 10 min homework assignment.
Reflecting on my last three months, I balanced a vigorous personal fitness program, extensive time commitments with family, a vacation, dedicated time to pursuing graduate studies, launched MorFokus with my business partner Carl, which involved client acquisition, project management and daily business operations. Amongst all of this, I still had a commitment, to my full-time employer.
My ability to manage time, has not always been easy. Important life lessons, from over two decades of trial and error, have taught me the importance to living a balanced life, and the tricks to accomplishing more without feeling overwhelmed or "busy".
What I have learned is that you have to always ask yourself; Why? Why am I doing this? What VALUE will this bring to me, my family, my work?
If there is value in what you are seeking then my recommendation is to do it. However, if there is no value in something that will fill your time, then why do it at all?
After you define your priorities, my suggestions are
A) Create an inverse priority pyramid
B) Be efficient and flexible
C) Always evaluate and make changes as needed.
INVERSE PRIORITY PYRAMID
To better manage my time, I have devised the inverse priority pyramid which is filled with priorities that bring significant value to me. The PLACEMENT OF PRIORITIES IS CRITICAL, as the items supporting the inverse pyramid need to be strong enough to carry the weight of the items above.
a) ME - Initially, this may seem self absorbed.
However, how can I support all those things
that I value like my family, my studies,
my business and my employe if I don't
strengthen myself first?
Therefore, the first priority is me. This includes, physical fitness, nutrition, sleep and mental stimulation.
b) FAMILY - My family is second. That way they get the best of me, rested and healthy and attuned to their needs.
C) EXECUTIVE MBA - I have seen how graduate education has benefited by business partner Carl, and many mentors in my life. Therefore, for me there is significant value in attaining the Executive MBA. It is providing me with knowledge and global networking abilities to grow MorFokus.
D) BUSINESS VENTURE - MorFokus- I love solving problems, collaborating with people, learning and managing my own time. The idea of running a virtual firm, allows me more quality time with family and our favourite activity of adventure and travel. There is no better opportunity for this then launching a virtual management consulting firm that empowers organizations to be part of the solution in developing and implementing efficient plans that drive results.
E) FULL TIME EMPLOYER - For now my employer, brings value to me by providing financial backing to grow our virtual firm as opening virtual doors does not guarantee a paycheque in the first three months. Additionally, the value of networking and learning is critical for the success of MorFokus.
That is my inverse priority pyramid, what is yours?
EFFICIENCY & FLEXIBILITY
Being efficient, is the key to managing time. I have eliminated tasks that bring no value and adjusted times to fit my priority pyramid.
Typical Week Day
a) I go to sleep early and sleep from 9 pm - 3 am (6 hours)
b) Work on school and MorFokus from 3am - 7am (4 hours)
d) Breakfast with kids, and drop them off at school FAMILY TIME - 7 am - 8:30 am (1.5 h hours)
f) Drive to work - MorFokus conference call/ audio book or audio lecture (30 min)
e) Work 9am - 12 pm (3 hours)
f) MorFokus 12 pm - 1 pm (1hour)
g) Work 1pm - 5.30 pm (4.5 hours)
h) Drive home - MorFokus conference call/ audio book or audio lecture (30 min)
i) Family time - 6:00 pm - 9 pm (3 hours)
Physical fitness is key for me, and twice a week I work out late and sleep later OR modify my schedule to keep everything balanced.
A) Work on school and MorFokus from 3am - 9am (4 hours)
B) Family time 9 - 8 pm (11 hours)
3.EVALUATE & CHANGE IF NEEDED
The last part is to constantly evaluate, with everyone and everything in your priority pyramid and make adjustments as needed.
Hopefully this helps you manage your valuable time.
Western Canada Division