Systems and Routines for More Free Time
If you find your days getting away from you and undone items being carried over day after day, you may want to consider adding a little more structure to your day. Now before you begin scheduling in 10 minute intervals, let me suggest you create that structure with systems and routines instead of intense time limits.
It is very easy to be distracted by busy work if all your to do list holds is a bunch of tasks. If you begin by grouping similar tasks together and then scheduling a block of time you will work on that kind of task you will create just enough structure to put some focused energy into that task and you will get better results.
Think of it this way, if you make calls every morning for half an hour, there will be days that you get through to a couple of people and get all the business done, and some days where you leave 25 messages. In either case, you are only opening your address book once, you are taking call notes in one place, and you are in get it done mode for half an hour.
It takes a bit of patience in the beginning but most of my clients are able to catch up on a backlog of calls within a couple of weeks and are constantly moving projects forward instead of things grinding to a halt because it is after 5pm and you forgot to call that one guy about that one thing and now you are stuck.
Contrary to popular belief, a little structure in your week will not zap your creativity. In fact I have found at least 5 advantages to adding systems and routines to your schedule.
- Free up creative time – less stress opens up the mind to more creative solutions that can pay off in time and money in the long run.
- Create focused time for projects – every bit of accomplishment can motivate you into the next one.
- Effective batching – start looking for the things on your list that go together.
- Opportunity for doing quick tasks – a few little things can get done and help you transition between the focused blocks of time.
- Easier delegation, even for perfectionists – by knowing the steps and having practiced them you can be more confident in handing jobs off and knowing how long they should be taking.
By applying this concept to most of your frequently repetitive tasks a structure to your week will start to emerge. Little things will stop falling through the cracks. Crisis situations occur far less often and you will experience much less overwhelm. Oh yeah, and you will find several hours of free time every week. I use mine to read a book, what will you do with yours?
WANT TO REPRINT THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR EZINE, BLOG OR WEBSITE? You may, as long as it remains intact and you include this complete blurb with it: Miriam Ortiz y Pino CPO, owner of More than Organized, helps people gain control of their time, stuff & space so they can experience, their life, streamlined. For more free streamlining tips visit www.morethanorganized.net.