The Quest for Personal Organization!

Posted: March 27, 2010 in Leadership, Marriage / Family, Relationship w/ Jesus

Ever feel like this with your time?

This is one of the first major lessons I learned upon our move to CA and beginning at South Bay.  Personal organization is crucial to leadership, and it will impact every aspect of our lives.  Not only can I be a better leader, but I can be a better husband and follower of Jesus.  When we get organized with our time we are able to narrow our focus and not be spread all over the place.  If we are spread out far then we get little to nothing done, but if we are able to focus all of our attention to tasks that need to be done then we are able to accomplish much.

So what does personal organization look like?  It will look differently for each person because we all process information differently and have different systems that work for us but not others.  What I will do is simply share some things that I have begun to implement that are helping me.  First, I created an ideal week.  On an excel sheet I blocked out specfic times each day that I want to set aside for specific tasks.  For example, I know that between 9am – 12pm I am the most focused, so each morning I blocked in FOCUS TIME in these hours.  I fight for these hours and try to protect them from meetings or other works tasks that would pull me away from them.  I want to use these hours to work on my major work tasks.  I then block out times in my early afternoon to schedule meetings.  These hours I tend to be less productive if I am sitting in my office working, so having meetings in these times helps me be more productive with my day.  I also on my ideal week block out times for Quiet Times (Time w/ Jesus), Working Out, FOCUS TIME (work), Meeting hours (work), and even family time (Date Night (I will protect this time like crazy!), Marriage meeting (I’ll blog about this at a later time), bill paying night, and even reading time).  I then upload all of my ideal week hours onto my Google Calendar, so people in the office see it and know when they can schedule meetings with me and when I am not available.  I have found that this helps focus me on my tasks because I know during these set hours I focus, during these hours I have meetings, etc.  It also helps with setting meetings because I can protect my times by simply telling people I can’t meet during that time because I have something else scheduled.  If you don’t have control of your time, then everyone else will!

Since this blog is getting long I will only mention one other thing I am learning to do in regards to personal organization.  This is the key of Prioritizing!  I have had to learn to prioritize more because I am getting busier and if I don’t know what my priorities are then I get pulled all over the place.  To do this I use a couple of different methods.  I use a method called 6×6, which allows me to see what are the BIG 6 things I need to accomplish over the next 6 weeks (I’ll blog more about this in the future).  I then make a weekly TO-DO List and break it into A, B, C, and D categories (A = must get done; B = lower priority; C = lowest priority; D = what I can delegate).  Lastly, I have a notebook that I will write in my daily tasks for that day.  This might be 5-10 things I need to accomplish that day.  By doing this I can stay focused and make myself leave other things alone that I don’t need to be doing.  I can get A.D.D. at times and be pulled off task every 2 minutes, but if I have my key priorities and tasks in my face then I am more able to stay on task.

There is more I could write about what I have learned and what has helped me, so there may be a part 2 in the future.  I would be interested to hear any feedback or how you manage your time, get stuff done, and stay focused!

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