Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Do Less to Achieve More

Do less to achieve more. It sounds odd but it works. In order to maximize your attentiveness, you may be well served by diminishing the number of responsibilities you have. Doing less things will give you more time and emotional energy for high-priority tasks.

Sit on fewer boards, cancel some personal obligations, cut back on attending so many meetings, and spend less time out for the evening. Do whatever you have to do, to devote the time and energy you need to achieve this important  outcome.  If it is worth achieving, you need to focus on it, make sacrifices for it and create time for it.

Be very sure that this is an activity of sufficient priority to cause you to make such significant changes. You will realize a side benefit of greater clarity around what is really important to you.

You're looking to use your focusing powers to create more of what matters most to you in the moments you're able to schedule. When you realize what's really important, then say no to anything that consumes time but doesn't bring you closer to what matters most to you. If you can't say no, delegate it, speed through it, or eliminate it. Robert Cooper

Five Days of Action

If something is of sufficient priority, you need to concentrate on it. But you may be distracted by too many other responsibilities. Some may have to go, no matter how good they may seem. Take some time today to prioritize. What really needs doing? What needs to be dropped because you're too overstretched to devote true attention to the priorities?

Take action today to drop those responsibilities that you determined yesterday needed to go. Make the phone call. Write the email. Send the message. Take action.

Concentrate like never before on what matters. Get clarity. Take ownership. Put supportive structures in place, start and build momentum. Determine today to start making your actions reflect the priorities in your mind.

Some things take time to ease out of. Be committed to the decision you have made. Take actions today to be very clear about your leaving or your duties ceasing. See that steps are being taken to replace you and, if necessary, train those who will follow you.

How can you convey to your key people that being involved in less may actually accomplish more? Communicate this powerful insight and strategy to them.

This post was adapted from my new book, 52 Solutions for Those Who Need a 25 Hour Day.

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