It's About Time
Strategy helps tie up life’s inevitable loose ends
At a seminar I presented recently, several attendees lamented that they have an overwhelming amount of work to catch up on.
I gave my opinion that, to be honest, I don't think we can ever catch up -- not with the constant daily inflow of new work.
I added that the best we can hope to do is to:
1) Focus on getting the important, high-priority, high-value things done.
2) Streamline the way we do things.
3) Strive to stay current with daily work.
I know how easy it is to get further and further behind. It can be like trying to walk up a "down" escalator -- expending good effort and energy but not getting anywhere.
To counter that, I've been reprogramming myself to "Do TWT." That's my shortcut for "Do Today's Work Today."
My handwritten "Do TWT" sign on bright orange paper hangs above my desk. This sign encourages, motivates and reminds me of this goal.
When I can "Do TWT," I stay more current with my work and have fewer things back up on me.
You might be wondering, "Just what is your 'TWT'?"
My "Today's Work Today" are those important things that need to be done, items that successfully wrap up today's events, handling any small tasks that came in today's mail, preparing for tomorrow and doing routine daily tasks.
To be specific, for me to "Do TWT," this afternoon I need to:
» Finalize this column so I can e-mail it in tomorrow.
» Wrap up the seminar just given by doing my evaluation, putting away the training materials and preparing the invoice.
» Prepare for tomorrow's meeting.
» Balance the checking account statement that came in today's mail.
» Water my houseplants, plus the usual routine tasks of doing the dishes and picking up the house.
As I write this on a Tuesday afternoon, I estimate the time to complete the above to be about four hours. If I stay focused, I figure I can complete it all and still have time to watch "American Idol"!
Because I'm definitely NOT a Type A, driven sort of person, my "Do TWT" approach provides sorely needed structure and challenge for me.
On some days there are a few leftovers, but far fewer than if I didn't have this goal.
Today, what do you need to do in order to "Do TWT"?
I invite you to join me to "Do TWT" each day and experience the positive difference it makes to wrap up today's loose ends today.
See you in two weeks!
Ruth Wong owns Organization Plus. Contact her care of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, Honolulu 96813, call 488-0288 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org