How to Finish Your Work, One Bite at a Time | Scott H Young - Deepstash

deepstash

Beta

Deepstash brings you key ideas from the most inspiring articles like this one:

Read more efficiently

Save what inspires you

Remember anything

How to Finish Your Work, One Bite at a Time | Scott H Young

https://www.scotthyoung.com/blog/2008/04/08/how-to-finish-your-work-one-bite-at-a-time/

scotthyoung.com

How to Finish Your Work, One Bite at a Time | Scott H Young
"How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time." If you've ever ran more than a few miles, you probably understand why you need to pace yourself. Runners that sprint at the start of a race will be exhausted far before they cross the finish line.

4

Key Ideas

Save all ideas

Pacing yourself

Trying to get work done uses the same principle as running: You have to pace yourself. Runners that sprint at the beginning will be tired out long before they reach the finish line.

One of the ways to pace your work is by maintaining weekly and daily to-do lists.

289 SAVES

310 READS

VIEW

The principle behind the To-Do List

  • At the end of the week, write a list with everything you want to get done.
  • At the end of the day, write a list containing what parts of that weekly list you want to be finished with tomorrow.

After you finish your daily list, you don't work on more projects or tasks. After you complete the weekly list, you're done for the week.

301 SAVES

306 READS

Advantages of using a WD system

  • A WD (Weekly/Daily) system manages your energy. You will get a maximum of work done while leaving yourself time to relax.
  • A WD system stops procrastination because your big projects become bite-sized tasks.
  • A WD system makes you proactive. With a bigger picture in mind, it's easier to put in the important but not urgent tasks.
  • A WD system keeps you from burning out since you only have to focus on the next bite.

265 SAVES

263 READS

How to Use a Weekly/Daily To-Do List

  • Focus on the Daily List: Once you've decided what chunk of your weekly list to handle, you may put the other tasks out of your mind.
  • Don't Expand the Lists: If you finish your daily or weekly list earlier than expected, don't add a more as this will turn into an infinite to-do list that can cause stress and procrastination.
  • Do a Regular Monthly Review: Pick out a few larger projects and keep them in mind when you write your weekly lists.

302 SAVES

307 READS

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Denying you have a problem

Stop saying that you don't have enough time to complete your commitments.

Admit that you need to get better at managing your time and start searching and trying techniques that will help you ...

Not planning your day

It's important to have an idea of what your daily priorities are and tasks you need to complete, preferably the night before. 

Also, make sure you prepare in the evening the outfit you're going to wear and the meals for the following day. Doing this will save time in the morning, and reduce decision fatigue.

"Urgent" vs "Important"

Take all of your tasks and place them into four quadrants:

  • To do first: the most important responsibilities that need to be done today or tomorrow.
  • Schedule: important tasks that are not urgent.
  • Delegate: essential items that are not important.
  • Don't do: tasks that aren't important or urgent. 

8 more ideas

What Time Management Is

Time is our precious resource. It is perishable, it is irreplaceable, and it cannot be saved. It can only be reallocated from activities of lower value to activities of higher value.

...

Eat That Frog!

Your “frog” is your most important task, the one you are most likely to procrastinate on if you don’t do something about it.

If you have two important tasks, start your day with the biggest, hardest, and most important task first. Focus on completing it before you go to the next one.

Failure to execute

We tend to confuse activity with accomplishment: we attend endless meetings and make plans, but at the end of the day, no one does the job and gets the results required.

“Failure to execute” is among the biggest problems in organizations today.

The philosophy of working "smart"

... is to maximize your productivity when you are working so that you can get more stuff done in shorter periods of time.

By working smarter, you'll find yourself with more time in th...

Find the to-do list app that work for you

The best one for you depends entirely on your working style and personal preferences.

You can use a physical notebook around everywhere you go, but it's easier to use a to-do list app or tool that syncs across all your devices. That way, you can access your to-do items whenever and wherever you need to, whether you're at your desk, in a meeting, or on a business trip.

Prepare in advance

Write out your to-do list the day before:

  • You'll free your time to dive right into your to-do list in the morning - one of the most productive times of day.
  • It can help you spot obstacles ahead of time and prepare accordingly.
  • Knowing what you have going on well in advance could help you relax and sleep better the night before.