Monday, June 18, 2012

Choice 3: Schedule the Big Rocks, Don’t Sort Gravel

Today I am writing part 3 of a 5-week blog series providing an overview to the principles covered in The 5 Choices to Extraordinary Productivity.  Did you miss the first 2 posts?  If so, follow these links to read Choice1 and Choice2.

One of the most common concepts taught by FranklinCovey over the last 25 years is the concept of Big Rocks.  The concept is simple.  In life, we have activities that require planning and others are more reactionary.  We also have some that are more important than others.  Once you have determined what tasks you need to accomplish, you need to schedule those into your calendar.  When urgent 9non-important) things come at you, stay focused on your most important goals.  When you do this over time, you will feel like you are accomplishing more in life and will become more fulfilled.

In order to achieve this, you will need to take 3 steps:

1.       Create a Master Task List
2.       Do Weekly Q2 Planning
3.       Do Daily Q2 Planning

Your master Task List captures all of your goals in one place.  It clears your mind of gravel.  It is used as a reference during Q2 planning.  It also helps categorize incoming tasks in natural chunks.

Your Weekly Planning should connect with your roles and goals.  You should take approximately 30 minutes to schedule your big rocks into your calendar and then organize the rest.

In order to achieve Extraordinary Productivity, we must live in Q2, as much as possible.  Here we find our most proactive work.  We create high-impact goals, do our creative thinking, we build our relationships and take time out for learning & renewal.

When working on your daily planning, build in some recurring Q2 time zones if possible.  Maybe you have a permanent block of time each day for planning, working out, reading, etc.

As a good rule of thumb, you will need to plan out 30 minutes a week and 5-10 minutes per day for planning.  Taking these 60-90 minutes per week to plan will allow you to live in Q2 and react less to unimportant activities.  Some things will simply not get done, but at least that isn’t what is most important!

Next week we’ll dive into Choice 4: Rule Your Technology, Don’t Let it Rule You!

Until next week,
John Vakidis

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