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How to Get More Work Done in a Week Than Most People Do in a Month

Busy doesn't mean productive

Busy work makes you feel like you are moving quickly and being productive in the process. But in effect, you are not. 

When you're busy, you're more likely to make poor time-management choices - taking on commitments you can't handle, or prioritizing trifling tasks over crucial ones. 

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

How to Get More Work Done in a Week Than Most People Do in a Month

How to Get More Work Done in a Week Than Most People Do in a Month

https://medium.com/personal-growth/how-to-get-more-work-done-in-a-week-than-most-people-do-in-a-month-ca0328a0cdd2

medium.com

5

Key Ideas

There are no hacks

Habits and work systems can produce the best return on your time

Getting more work done is about knowing what to do, when to do it, and how to get it done in order to maximize the little time you have every day.

Distractions

Urgent but unimportant tasks = distractions. 

Urgent tasks put us into constant “reply mode.” Important work is related to planned tasks that move us closer to our goals.

Interruptions break your flow

Anytime you are pulled away from your tasks, it takes time to readjust to them when you jump back in — up to 25 minutes in many cases.

Interruptions (notifications, loud noises, social media, checking email) harm your concentration. 

Busy doesn't mean productive

Busy work makes you feel like you are moving quickly and being productive in the process. But in effect, you are not. 

When you're busy, you're more likely to make poor time-management choices - taking on commitments you can't handle, or prioritizing trifling tasks over crucial ones. 

Planning today for tomorrow

  1. Before the day ends, identify and write down the best actions you need to take tomorrow.
  2. Every morning, focus on completing your action list from yesterday before midday.
  3. Rinse, improve and repeat. Every day.

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Living the 80/20 Life

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The Most Important Tasks (MITs)

Choose three Most Important Tasks for each day, and focus completely on gettting them done within a specific time.

If you add more than three, and you might not get them all done. By limiting yourself to a small number of things, you force yourself to focus only on the essential.

Success List

Instead of following a to-do list, make a shorter one called "success list". Why make one?

  • It aims you in a specific direction
  • It is an organized directive.

If your to-do list contains everything, then it’s probably taking you everywhere but where you really want to go.

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The Planning Fallacy

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

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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.

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Ruthless prioritization

It means deciding not to do things you'd really like to do. It also means deciding what's the most important task even when everything on your list feels crucial.

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Consolidate All of Your Tasks Into a Single Source

To-dos arrive from a variety of sources. Your boss sends you an email, you get a Slack message from IT, a bill arrives in the mail, or a coworker asks for a favor in the hallway.

In order to prioritize your task list efficiently, you need a master to-do list that contains all of the tasks you need to prioritize and complete from all of those sources.

Analyze Your Task List

Go through your list, review each task, and decide what you want to do with it. You have 4 options:

  • Do: complete the task now
  • Defer: complete it later
  • Delegate: assign it to someone else
  • Delete: remove it from your list

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