Pressure to put more in your cup – when your cup already overflows – stresses you out and drains your energy.
The cycle of death:
Work hard – Succeed – Get more to do – WORK HARDER – and so on.
Practically speaking, there are only three ways to get more done.
- Improve proficiency. Shorten the time it takes to do your work through mastery, systems, or software. Proficiency enables you to do in hours what took days in the past.
- Eliminate less meaningful work. Stop doing things that matter less so you can focus on things matter more. Pour something out of your cup.
- Give work away. Get someone else to do some of your work. Take something out of your cup and give it to a competent other.
Improve proficiency – make better lists:
People who get things done make lists.
Automatically prioritize your list WHILE you make it. Divide your list into three columns.
- Must do today.
*Always include the ‘next action needed’ to every item on your Must Do Today list.
Never put anything on Today’s To-Do List if you don’t know what to do next. Uncertainty drains your energy and wastes your time.
What if you’re unsure of the next step? Your action item might be, “Ask Betty for suggestions of what to do next.”
The purpose of recording the next action step is to free your mind and lower your stress.
Productivity tip: REST
The purpose of rest is restoration so you can work. Hard work makes life meaningful. A life of all leisure is boring. But the cycle of constantly working harder destroys you.
How might leaders get more done and enjoy life more?
*The idea of adding the next action item to things on your list comes from, Making It All Work by David Allen.