Focus on big rocks

So what distracts you from your big rocks?

Small matters can be intensely distracting, if you let them.

When you choose to start each day with trivial activities you won’t have time for important stuff.

And in all probability procrastinate.

So what are important matters?

I mean the stuff that’s crucial.

Like writing client proposals, creating leveraged products like content or cold prospecting for potential leads to name a few examples.

Does it feel like you are running from one small fire to the next?

Are you constantly dealing with minor issues?

Maybe you don’t feel very productive.

And that your time could be better spent.

Frustration might be overwhelming you.

You’re probably thinking about the important stuff you need to get done that just seems way off in the pipeline.

Focus on big rocks 1

What if there were a way to prioritise your big rocks or the important stuff?

You might be thinking there has to be an easier way to move forward and to create a semblance of balance.

There is.

Managing your priorities is a matter of identifying what they are and then defending your stance on this or sticking to them.

You can find a strategy and begin applying planning in your life.

Especially if for you creating a business is a priority.

Keep top of mind it might also mean making sacrifices.

Like for instance giving up watching television every night, or being out drinking with friends every weekend for example.

Writer Stephen Covey used a visual analogy to illustrate his concept of time management in his book First Things First.

A mason jar represents time as a discrete variable, meaning we have a limited amount of time each day in which to achieve what we must.

The jar is then filled first with big rocks, then pebbles, then sand.

Each of the elements filling the jar represent activities in your day.

The rocks are those things which are crucial/time critical to us.

So ask yourself what are these things?

And write them down.

Focus on big rocks 2

Writing them down is the beginning of acquiring and implementing new habits.

Plan each day with a to-do list that has these rocks at the core of what you need to do.

Try out this:

  • write down what you need to do;
  • prioritise the order in which you need to do them;
  • learn to say “no” assertively and defend your big rocks
  • focus until you get things done
  • diarise what you will be doing on each day of the week with a day specifically identified as your planning day

You now have your big rocks mapped so think of the time as booked out.

If someone asks you for your big rocks allocated time say you can say you have an appointment or prior commitment.

When you are conscious and mindful of these important matters it’s more likely you will achieve your focus.  So defend your time.

Pebbles represent tasks that are “urgent” but have manageable impacts and we can manage the consequences of putting them aside for another day.

Sand is representative of minor activities like phone calls, emails, or social media status updates.

It’s important for you to remember not to try to do everything.

Better you attend to the important matters and fit in the others as and where possible.

I really like this quote which goes “There is never enough time to do everything but there’s always enough time to do the important things.”

So when you come to creating work/life balance focus on:

  • identifying your big rocks
  • putting them in your schedule
  • proactively putting aside the time
  • then taking action

This way you will achieve what you have laid out by following your plan and implementing these tactics.

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