Prioritizing, planning and scheduling is the process by which you design your life. Ultimately the habits you have will determine how well you succeed.
Key Points for LIFE DESIGN
Prioritising, planning and scheduling is the process by which you design your life. By doing so you can reduce your stress levels and maximise your effectiveness.
Follow this nine-step process to prepare and implement:
1. Decide on the essential priorities necessary for you to succeed in your job/business/life.
2. Identify the time/resources you have available.
3. Identify what goals and targets you need to achieve.
4. Identify what is irrelevant, intrusive, and drains energy.
5. Eliminate habits and behaviors and commitments that do not serve you.
6. Create firewalls to protect your boundaries and learn to reject what doesn’t serve you.
7. Schedule the goals and targets you need to achieve to meet your priorities.
8. Ensure that you have the right habits in place to achieve your targets.
9. Execute your plan and course correct.
It’s crucial for your professional and personal goals that you schedule your time. If you have little or no discretionary time left when you reach Step 7 above, revisit your tasks to see if you can do them differently. Otherwise, your work-life balance will suffer.
Here are twelve time-management habits. Tailor these as you like, but whichever you’re working on, ensure you do so in twenty-one-day cycles.
Habit 1: Strive to be authentic. Be as honest with yourself as you can about what you want and why you do what you do.
Habit 2: Favour trusting relationships. Build relationships with people you can trust and count on. Ensure those same people can trust and count on you. Train your staff to assume greater responsibility. This will free up your time.
Habit 3: Maintain a lifestyle that will give you maximum energy. This includes exercise for at least 120 minutes a week, sufficient sleep, and an appropriate lunch.
Habit 4: Listen to your biorhythms and organise your day accordingly. Schedule your tasks based on how your energy fluctuates throughout the day. Stop working impossible hours trying to do it all on your own.
Habit 5: Set very few priorities and stick to them. Plan your time so you are working on a maximum of two things, both of which are your highest priorities. The negative effects of bad meetings are much more dramatic than the positive impact of good sessions.
Habit 6: Turn down things that are inconsistent with your priorities. Saying “No” to other people will make you more productive. Stop people pleasing and be more driven by your values and your priorities. One of the more common reasons for overwhelm and burnout is not being able to say "no" and protecting your time and energy for what truly matters.
Habit 7: Set aside time for focused effort. Schedule time every day to work on just one thing. We have spoken about how “attention fragmentation” afflicting the always-connected executive harms productivity and happiness.
Habit 8: Automate repetitive tasks and improve them if possible. Consider ways of doing things better and faster. Consider using templates.
Habit 9: Build solid processes. Set up processes that last and that run without your attention.
Habit 10: Spot trouble ahead and solve problems immediately. Anticipate potential problems and build solutions for them in advance. The further in time you project, the more potential problems you can anticipate. The idea is not to be overwhelmed by all this but to design just in time solutions.
Habit 11: Chunk up your work into small units. Focus on one unit at a time. Instead of dreaming about the big goal, spend most of your time working on what’s in front of you.
Habit 12: Unless there’s a good reason to give it up, don’t terminate what you considered worth starting. Stop doing what’s no longer worthwhile; finish what’s important.
Creating your Strategic Plan (You may pause the audio every time you are answering a question) – For the CEO, Entrepreneur, Manager
1. Identify the core business beliefs you need to succeed: I believe the
following things are true and they are how I want to run my business (Write down ten.) This is also the time to look at these beliefs and decide if they are really valid or are archaic shadows from your past and limiting beliefs.
2. Your Personal Vision: Write out all that you want to be, have and do if money were no object. How much money would you like to have flow through your life to make this happen?
3. Your Company Vision: Write out your company vision as if it were already true (present tense). Include the value of your company and any other details you want to make sure happen
4. Your Ideal Future: Write your ideal future here. What will you see, feel, hear and touch when you are living your ideal future? Who will you be sharing this ideal future with? How will you look, behave and feel when you are living this future? Who will you be working with? Have fun with it!
Average success is often based on setting average goals. Decide what you really want: to be the best, the fastest, the cheapest, the biggest, whatever. Aim for the ultimate. Decide where you want to end up. That is your goal.
Then you can work backwards and lay out every step along the way. Never start small where goals are concerned. You’ll make better decisions — and find it much easier to work a lot harder — when your ultimate goal is ultimate success.
Achieving a goal — no matter how huge — isn’t the finish line for highly successful people. Achieving one huge goal just creates a launching pad for achieving another huge goal.
Maybe you want to create a hundred-million business; once you do that you can leverage your contacts and influence to create a charitable foundation for a cause you believe in. Then your business and humanitarian success can create a platform for speaking, writing, and thought leadership. The process of becoming remarkably successful in one field will give you the skills and network to be remarkably successful in many other fields. Remarkably successful people don’t try to win just one race; they expect and plan to win a number of subsequent races.
5. Long-Term Targets: Pick a specific date somewhere between three and five years from now. Write down the long-term targets you want to have accomplished by that date for your business.
My general experience is that we very often over-estimate what we can do in one year and under-estimate what we can do in five. So the impact of picking a longer term target is that it helps to focus the current short term target as well as helping you create a detailed map of how to get there.
6. Long-Term Priorities: Write down the most important areas of your business to focus on in order to accomplish your long-term targets. Write down ten, but identify your top five and then write them down.
7. Short-term Goals: Pick a specific date somewhere about one year from now. Write down the short- term goal that you want to have accomplished by that date for your business.
8. Top Five Short-term Areas of Focus: Write down the most important areas of your business to focus on in order to accomplish your short-term goals. Write down ten then identify your top five.
9. Key Metrics: Write down all the things you may want to measure in your business. Write down the four things you will measure on a weekly basis to ensure you hit your short-term goals.
10. Key Short-Term Area of Focus: Detail what all the Weekly Tasks aim to accomplish.
11. Quarterly Initiatives: Write down your first Key Short-Term Area of Focus then break it down into no more than five quarterly initiatives.
12. Weekly Tasks: Break down each quarterly initiative for the upcoming quarter into smaller tasks. Write down how long each task will take. Go back and break down any tasks that are longer than thirty minutes into smaller tasks.
You are done when all tasks on your list are no more than thirty minutes long or two cycles on 15 minutes. These tasks must also be routine and easily accomplished and better still can be delegated. If they are not routine tasks, then they have not been defined accurately and chunked down appropriately.
One lucky listener that posts a review on iTunes will win a private confidential consultation and coaching with me on discovering your soul’s purpose. I will lead you on a personal journey to discover your unique mind-body psychosomatic map of your life. You will get a detailed report and a personal 45 minute consultation with me that is worth thousands.
On this podcast I’m going to help you design a life that works. So you are able to say yes to the things that matter and eliminate everything else that slows you down. The more clear you can be about how to organize your daily life to support your bigger vision, the more you’ll step into your true potential, stay on track and accomplish all that you want and deserve. Are you ready to make that happen?
Feel free to reach out to me to ask your questions at AskDrSun.com. Your life is a gift. Design it. Do what matters and join me each week as we get closer to designing the life of your dreams. I am Dr Sun. Join me next week on Your Life by Design.