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When most people see the term “system” they associate it to something complicated or in the personal development world, something you need to buy. In reality, systems are simply a set of steps to follow and creating systems is a powerful way to become more efficient by minimizing the duplication of effort.
I have systems for a lot of the things I do professionally – and I’m always tweaking them and adding more. Sometimes my bigger systems have smaller ones within them. For example, I have a system for creating a new course and within that, there are systems for creating the audio program for the course as well as the course workbook.
These days, cell phones do a whole lot more than just making calls – yes, they still make calls. Of course, with apps that do everything from connect you to latest social network to addictive games that can keep you busy for hours, the fun can cancel out the productivity pretty quickly. I have an Android phone and I love it (for my iPhone friends, you may find that many of these apps are in the iTunes App store as well). And yes, I play lots of games on it. However, I have found some great applications that actually help me be productive. Here are my top five:
To do lists really are useless. The remind me of the pile of junk mail on my desk – they keep growing and growing until I finally get frustrated and just wipe it out. Throughout the years I’ve experimented with various type of to do lists: paper based, electronic and I even created several types of my own. But I’ve found a tool that’s been around a lot longer that works much more effectively: the calendar.
Living in the present is much easier said than done. Ever been in a meeting but your mind is drifting elsewhere? Perhaps you’re thinking of a conversation you had right before your meeting or you’re planning out the rest of your day. It’s amazing how so many of us spend our days at work thinking about our next vacation yet when we’re actually on vacation, we spend so much time worrying about work.
Last week, we discussed how time is something that we never seem to have enough of. Once you’ve looked at how you spend your time and made changes, the next step is to save time when you do things. You can accomplish this in a number of different ways, many of which fall under personal organization.
Here are some examples of how lack of organization can add more stress to your life and make you less efficient:
- You’re late for an appointment because you spent 20 minutes looking for your car keys.
“So much to do, so little time to do it.”
“If I could just get an extra hour each day to catch up”
These are some of the common reactions I get when I ask people about time management. With family commitments and increasing pressure to do more in the workplace, it’s no surprise that people wish they had 30 hours each day to get everything done.
Here are some tips to help you get more done in less time:
In this day and age, people have so much to do that they are often pressured to multitask. Bad idea – at least the way most people multi-task. If you start one thing and then receive a phone call and that call makes you start something else and then you get an email message that reminds you to do another small task, you’re not being efficient. Even if you eventually get all three tasks done, you’re wasting effort.
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Please take a look at my latest e-book, "The Ultimate Guide to Effective Theme Meetings." This 62 page e-book contains tips as well as 10 ready to use theme meeting kits. Each kit contains everything from the invitation to planning the food & decor to enough table topics for up to 30 participants. And if you act fast, you can get it while it's still on sale.
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