Master Your Calendar for Ultimate Productivity
I was just recently asked by an aspiring entrepreneur about how to manage variable work hours and what outcome that has on an individual's quality time. Awesome question.
Give attention to both your professional and personal obligations EQUALLY.
It is not impossible, nor is it pointless. We just have to look at the stories of some magnates to realize that success cannot be identified alone by one's accumulation of wealth or prominence. Walmart founder, Sam Walton, was one of the most affluent men in the world. And what were the last words he reportedly uttered at his deathbed? "I blew it." Quite an epiphany. Despite his fortune, he was among the most miserable of the needy, having let the relationships that mean most unravel into withdrawal.
Make no mistake. This isn't one of those anti-money rants. In any case, the only way to create more individual and community autonomy is for each of us to have more financial skill. However, victory must not be evaluated just on the career front. Success Principles author, Jack Canfield, feels there are seven arenas one should nurture in order to possess actual and balanced prosperity:
• Finance & Wealth
• Free Time
• Health & Appearance
• Personal Development
• Community & Charity
Now, aside from the why, I'm also going to demonstrate the how. Understand that a person who flakes on simple meet-ups may either have their values twisted or they haven't yet mastered how to maximize the use of their calendar tools. If you are among the latter, be consoled in the fact that you aren't by yourself. Productivity skills are for the most part practiced. The key: Reverence for and control of your calendar.
In my own Google calendar, I've put together these major categories:
• Make Money
• Friends & Family
• Home & Personal
Make Money is what others might tag as Work. It's whatever is business-related: whether it's an actual occupation, or it's a consultation I offer or a seminar I attend that may advance my profession.
Arts. They're a significant part of my study, both as a creator and as a leader. So this calendar includes lots of art shows, performances, workshops, and conferences.
Friends & Family includes lunches coffee talks, birthday parties, holidays, or even time with a buddy at the rock climbing gym.
Home & Personal is "me" time. Anything related to a visit to the beach, exercise, grocery shopping, laundry, a doctor's appointment, or home improvement.
It is essential that we record everything. Otherwise, we can too easily "Sam Walton" our relationships and family time, making the poor presumption that forgiveness will amend what people imagine about our core integrity. In the technique I describe above, EVERYTHING is scheduled. Not just the theoretically important Work stuff - All of it is important. Give each event a specific time and day slot. This way, you can precisely (i.e. honestly) conclude whether you can commit to any invitation, however big or small.
As a result, you will be able to create a legacy that will far outlive any wealth you accumulate and any growth your business may undergo. That of your sense of honesty, your penchant for congruency, and your strength of contract...so that you may save your voice for a communique more poetic and tranquil when it's time for you to slip away into that great unknown.