In this episode of the Better Than Success Podcast, your host Nikki Purvy reveals step-by-step her time management technique that allows her to complete more in a day than others complete in a week. We all know that time management is key to success and business development. This 9-step process is easy to follow and start with laying a solid foundation that starts with mindset. There is also a free download that will help listeners to adopt this technique. Click the button below to get the download.
Last week on episode 4 of the “Better than Success” Podcast we talked about the 3 Phases of work/life balance for new entrepreneurs. We talked about the ‘Tantrum Phase’, ‘The Superman Phase’ and the ‘Work Smarter not Harder Phase’.
In the ‘Work Smarter not Harder Phase’, we learn that time is the most valuable resource. This is why it is important for us to learn to maximize our time if we must work smarter
Here I will lay out my 9 step process to maximize my time and get 75% more done in a day.
Steps 1-3 are foundational and very important.
Step 1. Develop A Time Control Mindset.
This is the most important step in this whole process. You have to develop a Time Control Mindset. I’m going to note a couple of facts that will help you develop a Time Control Mindset
“You have the same amount of hours in a day as Beyonce”
“Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion” – Parkinson’s Law
“You are AlWays the boss of your time” –Nikki Purvy
Step 2. Learn to Focus.
Most people cannot focus. This is not based on empirical evidence but I would guess that 80% of people don’t now how to focus on a single task for an hours up to 40 hours let alone one that takes 1 hour.
I learned the importance of concentration from the book the THE POWER OF CONCENTRATION. Theron Q. Dumont or William Walker Atkinson. The author is noted as both men.
Here are some tasks that will help you focus:
- working out without stoping to talk to your friends
- Playing an instrument or anything that requires you to use your hands
Here are some focus killers:
- Social Media
- Too much work-time banter
Step 3. Time yourself.
Write out your tasks to be completed over the next day/hour/week in haphazard increments before you attack them. Time your self on each individual task. How long does it take to complete each task uninterrupted? This is very important. This concept came from the book ‘Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time’ by Jeff Sutherland. I didn’t read all of it but I did uncover the part where the author talks about learning how long t takes to do certain tasks before you lock down a project due date
The concept here is to get an accurate time frame of how long it takes to complete different tasks uninterrupted when you’re focused.
Record these times, take a mental note or whatever.
This may take a week or a month for you to get a proper account for how long it takes to complete tasks.
Steps 4-9 I have a worksheet for you to download here
Step 4. Record Your Tasks as They Come to You
Record all your tasks as they come to your head. Write down all your tasks to be completed as you go along in life. Take notes in your phone, write on scraps of paper, or take notes on your computer. You will get ideas from everywhere. Write them down anywhere but be sure that you can find them come Monday morning. And at the top of every other working day
BEFORE YOU DO ANYTHING. BEFORE YOU HAVE YOUR COFFEE. Do steps 5 and 6.
Step 5. Create Your Master Task List
Make a list of all your tasks that you recorded in your various places. Take them all and put them in one place, for the week, ON the COMPUTER. This is called the master task list
Step 6. Schedule Out Your Day
Schedule out your day. Just today. Schedule out 15 min, 30 min, 1 –2 hour blocks of time to complete tasks throughout your day and start inserting them in these blocks according to priority and how long it takes you to do a task uninterrupted, because remember you timed yourself. This is called the daily schedule.
Add in your coffee break and your lunch break. And your Facebook break if you need one. Schedule these out. Schedule out time to BS with your coworkers. For real, factor that in.
Step 7. Define the End of the Day
Give yourself a definitive time to end work for the day, no matter what. This is what gives you the work/life balance.
Note: As you go through your day sticking as close to your schedule as possible make note of the following:
- Remember you are only doing today so not everything from the week’s list will get in here. Its not supposed to. What this does is it allows you to race against the clock for completing individual tasks and gives you a deadline for each. So its like you are always working in the last minute without the pressure. It also assures you that you are actually working as efficiently as you can.
- As you go through the day completing tasks use the strike out to cross them out both on the schedule and the large task list
- As new things come up through out the day that does not need your immediate attention, add them to the master task list.
Step 8. Account for the things you completed
At the end of the day account for the things you completed as well as the things you did not. Sometimes things come up or new more urgent tasks get thrown in the day so tasks take a little longer. So you may not complete everything but that’s ok. You did as much as you possibly could. And if that is true then it’s a lot. You are human, so that means that you are powerful by nature. As long as you are at your best then that means you did a lot!
Step 9. Start your new day
Before you do anything as soon as you sit at your desk. Take the things from the master task list that did not get crossed off and the things that did not get completed and remember the new tasks that came up yesterday that didn’t require your immediate attention they should be here too. Copy and paste them all down to anew master task list for that day and repeat steps 6-8. This is why you do this on a computer.