Time And Priority Management



Life is time, and time is life.

There is a great poverty in North America: time poverty. And if people aren’t aware that time is the most precious resource a human being has in his life, they will never be able to manage their time or their priorities.

Even if you have all the money there is in the world, you will never be able to buy 2 hours from yesterday and 30 minutes for tomorrow. It’s all about awareness for managing your ambivalences and consciously choosing what you’re going to do and why you need to do it, with the time you have been given each day. That’s what priority management is all about.

First, who can tell me why people don’t focus on the high return activities? Do you really understand the reasons for procrastination. Do you really and sincerely think you don’t have time for this or that task? Realize the relationship you have with activities you despise doing knowingly they are a must! 

You need to distinguish the symptoms from the causes, identify time grudgers and get rid of 80 % of the time eaters. I suggest you do the following time registry exercise. This involves taking stock of your daily current activities.

I invite you to take note of your daily activities for 5 consecutive days and the time you spend doing each one of these activities. It’s crucially important to write everything down. For example:

Time. Activity. Time invested on the activity.

I get up at 5:30 a.m. I take the dog out in the backyard, 5 minutes. I have my espresso, 5 min. I answer my e-mails, I do this or that. Etc.

Note that this is the same exercise we’re asked to do when we are on a diet follow: we write down everything we eat and the time we ate it. Same thing when you are managing your finances: you have to write down all your expenses, that’s how you’ll know where to cut. 

At the end of the week, considering everything you’ve written down, I invite you to identify your activities and the time spent on each one. Are they professional or personal? After all, you need to ensure that the wheel of life is well balanced between personal and professional activities. Then, categorize your activities as follows:

A is a must; I can’t move it no matter what.

For example: a lawyer meeting with a judge can’t move it because he feels like to.

B is as important as an A, but you can only move it once in your diary, not twice.

C is for social interactions. We need to socialize, but sometimes it’s useless and it takes too long.

For example: a conversation that could be over in 5 minutes sometimes will last 15 minutes.

D is for activities you could or need to delegate.

E is used to identify time-wasters that need to be eliminated. 

Take e-mail, for example. It’s gone viral: people receive an e-mail, they have to reply right away. But unless you work at the NY Stock Exchange or for 911, there’s no urgency in answering an e-mail. Personally, I answer my e-mails 5 times a day, and that’s more than enough.

It goes without saying that, in life, the unexpected will always happen. But don’t let the unexpected take up more than 20% of your time. Dealing with recurrent problems piecemeal is deadly! You need to deal with problems once for all, by getting to the root of the problem rather than treating the symptoms.

Thanks to this exercise, you should be able to organize yourself better, plan your work and delegate some activities, become more effective and efficient by distinguishing between the important and the urgent, and prioritize in times of stress by keeping your focus on the essential., the high return activities.

If you follow the recipe, I guarantee you’ll save 60 minutes a day to do the things you love.

Still need help? I suggest you take my training course Time and Priority Management – Gain An Extra Hour Per Day or contact me for personalized coaching sessions.