Remember the old visual aid to the lesson about time management where a teacher puts some sand and gravel in a jar and then asks a student to add some larger stones? The stones don’t fit so the teacher empties jar.
(Image from Monica at http://wholelottasomethin.com/)
This time, she puts the stones in first, then the gravel, then the sand, and finally some water.
The lesson is that if you put in the big things first, there will be room for the smaller things to fill in the gaps.
I’ve been trying to put this in practice in my own life. Get the important things done first because the other stuff will get done anyway. Dishes will get done. Laundry will find its way to the washer then the dryer. I’ll pick up a book and read or catch up on a few rounds of Words With Friends. But if I do those things before tackling my most important task for the day (writing or Bible study), then often I end the day wondering where the time went. I may have played twelve rounds of WWF but not written twelve words on my manuscript.
Lists and goals and prioritizing will only go so far. At some point, you must decide what you’re going to focus on. Actually, I’m talking to “you” but I mean me.
I like my life and I like myself better when I’m working on my goals and feeling productive.
What’s your favorite strategy to increase your effectiveness?