FOCUS! How to get things done:

Focus! Too much to do?


So I resurfaced today from a very long weekend abroad and found a long list of to dos waiting for me. I used the POSEC and Eisenhowermodels to help me.  Being the practical person that I am, I have kept the “first things first” attitude and worked on the Eisenhower Principal this week.  The idea comes from a quote by former US president Eisenhower: "I have two kinds of problems, the urgent and the important. The urgent are not important, and the important are never urgent." 


You have four variables for each task on your to do list: important or not, and urgent (time-wise) or not.  That leaves you with the most important jobs that are important and urgent to do first. In the grid, these activities are in red.



Then you have the activities which you put into your agenda and keep.  These are the important activities that are not urgent.  In the grid you find them in green.  I would add all the activities that keep you a healthy and happy person here, as well as the job to-dos. 



Since I own my business consultancy and have nobody to delegate to, the orange box means I have to “outsource”.  At the moment, this is only the cleaner, my husband or children.  But if you are working in a team, have an apprentice, or an employee, the urgent but not important activities are to be delegated.



Finally there are the things from your list that are just “fluff”.  Get rid of those things as they are neither urgent nor important and they waste your time.


Once you have your list of to-dos in order of priority, you go on with the POSEC Model


Done, using the Eisenhower matrix J



Decide what are one-time, yearly, quarterly, monthly, weekly, and daily activities and by importance and urgency, organize your day, week, etc.



The activities hat must be done that you dislike.  And, after the DO list do these 

to “get them over with”, as they can drain you of energy, if left undone for too long.  Here the proverbial “Just do it!” comes in to play.



Do not spend too much time on the fun things so you have no time left over for the DO  list  Be careful not to waste your time and make sureyou are using your best energy time on the your important things and lowest energy time on the less important (but urgent) things.



Contribute to society by doing one or two things that you are passionate about that are for the “greater good”.  This, in turn will keep you energized about life and work.


Finally, remember, after your DO list, to do the “worst things” to get them done and not weighing on you, stay positive and take frequent (but short) breaks to keep your mind fresh and focused, and enjoy the summer weather out there!


One more phrase:  EAT the FROG first.  In other words, do the least attractive/fun thing first.  Do not go for the easiest, most energizing item on your list to begin the day.  That you can do at 3pm in the afternoon.

My client uses post-its for filling out her Eisenhower Matrix

My client uses post-its for filling out her Eisenhower Matrix