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7 Tips to Declutter Your Calendar-and Keep It That Way

Create Blocks

Create Blocks

Part of cleaning up your schedule is finding strategies to prevent it from getting cluttered again.

Block chunks of time on your calendar when you won’t be available to answer emails or phone calls or to attend meetings. This will prevent other things from accumulating and occupying the time you need.

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

The Planning Fallacy

We all have busy schedules, but we are incorrectly planning our day around the time we have, not around priorities.

Our estimates on how long certain tasks will take are almost always ...

Dwight D. Eisenhower
Dwight D. Eisenhower
“What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important."
The 4 Kinds of Priorities

The Decision Matrix on how to approach tasks has 4 quadrants:

  • Quadrant 1: The Urgent Problems which are important.
  • Quadrant 2: Not Urgent but important tasks
  • Quadrant 3: Urgent but not really important
  • Quadrant  4: Distractions and time-wasting tasks. 

Prioritize the important (Quadrant 2) to attain maximum benefit from your work.

Scheduling styles
When it comes to our daily schedule, most people fall into one of two camps:
  • The Overscheduler: Their days are determined from the moment they wake up to their evening routine.
Scheduling your day

A good daily schedule is a blueprint for a successful life. 

Knowing what we’re doing and when empowers us with a sense of purpose, meaning, and focus.

Your most important work

The most successful people consistently get their most important work done first.

Build recurring time for your most important work in the morning, before you start anything else. Your energy levels are naturally higher in the morning, but completing a meaningful task first thing has also a domino effect that pushes you through the day.

Self-Managing Our Priorities

We need to take ownership and set priorities of the existing workload ourselves. Our priorities can be divided into:

  • The work that one is passionate about, and ha...
Prioritize Your Work
  • Prioritize the tasks with the highest value addition and impact, while being in your 'high passion' list.
  • Tolerate tasks that may be important but stress you out, as they may be part of the deal. It is also good to push yourself out of the comfort zone.
  • Elevate tasks that others don't see as important, but you are extremely motivated about
  • Delegate all procedural, low-value and low-energy tasks to someone else. If that is not possible, try to minimize or eliminate such work.
Flag Your Priorities

Take ownership and reclaim your time, choosing where you can best spend your time and energy.

You can analyze your last month's calendar and flag or grade your work and in which quadrant you have been working. This will help you plan in a more informed way to use the finite resources of time and energy.