Really? Don’t waste your time!

Photo By Inigo Echenique

Really? Don’t waste your time! – By Arnie Wohlgemut

There are many quotes and sayings that involve time:

*To explain something, we say: “There is a time and place for everything.”
*To the sales clerk following me around the store, I’ll say: “I’m just killing time.”
*To your manager, you might say: “I didn’t have enough time to get to it!”
*After a long meeting, you might say: “What a waste of time!”
*On vacation, you’ll say: “Wow – time flies!”

The Ancient Greeks had two words for time:

Chronos: Time as something to be devoured
Kairos: Time as a gift to be managed or committed to priorities

Every so often I ask myself if I am using my time wisely.

Recently, I realized that I was killing more time than I was using productively.  My use of time was out of balance.

So, I went back to a system I have used many times to get back on track:

  1. I listed the things I ‘needed’ to do or needed to get done on sticky notes (one task each note).  Action items only; big or small, it didn’t matter. They are all items already top of mind, some I found in my journal, others in my phone log and in files on my desk.
  2. I stuck them all on the wall.
  3. More sticky notes. I listed my goals for the current year.
  4. More sticky notes. I listed longer term goals.
  5. I prioritized my goals.
  6. I grouped notes together under the goals – in order of priority. I took into consideration things like the impact on the goal and on other tasks.

Now, right here on my wall, I have an inventory of tasks. Not everything I started with is still there – some of the deleted items I wrote in my journal – for another day.

Other tasks were moved to a new subset – things I can delegate.

I realize this is just a brief outline of my system to use my time for impact rather than just killing it off one minute at a time!

If you want a more in-depth outline – give me a call or email me… I’d be happy to talk with you about it. Time management matters. It transforms us from a mediocre leader to a successful leader.

You’ve heard it many times (thanks Dad). We all have the same amount of time….