You’re Going About Your Day Completely Wrong

So am I, and I am ready to make a change.  Here’s the back story.  Did you ever notice that when you go about doing tasks you get bogged down in stuff like email and “do now” tasks?  That is the story of my life some days.  I never seem to get to the bigger tasks, the ones that I know will bring a bigger return or mean more to me.  If I spend all of my time dealing with email and putting out fires, I never get to blogging, and that’s what I really want to be doing.  It’s frustrated me for a long time, but I could never seem to figure out what the issue was.  Until yesterday.

I was reading through my Google Reader, and came across an article by Chris Brogan titled “Organize Your Business.” Now, there are a few reasons that made me click and read the article.  First, I really enjoy and benefit from Chris’ blog posts.  I think they are insightful and always get me thinking.  Second, it had the word “organize” in the title, and as we discuss all the time, I’m a sucker for organization.  I can tell you this article blew my mind, and has me working differently today, the day after I read it.

I won’t go into the whole article, mainly because I want you to click HERE and read it straight from Chris’ point of view, but the main idea is that we are going about getting our stuff done backwards.  In the article, Chris says that putting the long-range goals first helps get them done, and those are the ones that bring the biggest return.  Chris details his daily workflow for his business as this:

  1. Long term goals.
  2. Important projects.
  3. Urgent tasks.
  4. Maintenance tasks.

So today, I’m trying just that.  I’ve spent the first hour or so of my work time getting a few blog posts done and scheduled for the upcoming weeks.  I am about to move on to some projects I’ve been working on, and then later today I’ll get to the “do now” tasks for the day, and then after that I’ll deal with email.  I already feel more productive.  Let’s hope it sticks.

How do you organize your day?  In what order do you get tasks done?  Share with us in the comments below.

This entry was posted in Time Management and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to You’re Going About Your Day Completely Wrong

  1. This really interests me Aaron as often I keep rolling over ‘to do’ things that will really grow and help/impact on my business to the next month or week as I am bogged down doing ‘daily admin’ and they are not getting done as I keep pushing them forward, but how to ensure the other stuff still gets done if the to do list is reversed? Yes it’s mundane but still needs to be done, he he I’m off to read the post as I want to get my bigger stuff done and fed up of feeling frustrated and ‘trapped’! . . thank you for sharing 😉

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree, this is a problem I’ve had too…how do I make sure the “other” stuff gets done? What I’ve been trying to do is balance a little bit, like one “big task” followed by a few “daily admin” tasks and then back and forth. Plus, if I know the laundry has to be done, it prompts me to make it through my other stuff so it gets done.

  2. Mcscraps4/Claudia says:

    I never thought of it that way. I often feel unproductive because I’m putting out little fires but not getting anything big done. So at the end of the day I know I’ve been busy but have little to show for it. I’m going to try to re-train myself to do as the article suggests and get more done, hopefully opening up my day for more fun stuff!! Thanks

    • Anonymous says:

      I have to say, working like this has been so rewarding lately. I feel like I am doing more “important” tasks, rather than putting out the fires.

  3. Hi Aaron, I have been going about my day starting with email, and it can take a couple of hours to get through, but that is because I don’t get a chance to check it every day. I am also going to take a week and give this order-of-events a shot.

    • Anonymous says:

      I hear you on that, email takes up a ton of time. I’m the opposite, I always end up going back and checking, and then rechecking and rechecking…so many times it’s just as time consuming. I have to say, with the backwards working like this, I am getting more done, and more “important” work done.

  4. Sara Gleason says:

    Oooh thanks for this!  It’s refreshing to reframe my thinking about organization.  I too, pretty much approach this in the exact opposite way from Chris’ suggestion with maintenance first on the list and then urgent, etc.  My long-term goals are always always on the back burner.  And in the process I sabotage my own success, I think.  Going to give this approach a go.

    • Anonymous says:

      Awesome! Yeah, I had forgotten about this post, and now I want to try and get back on track with this. I remember that when I did start doing it, it was much more effective.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s