Monday, October 24th, 2016
The more value you place on serving, the more tempted you will be to supply what others demand. This seems good, but there is one problem…you are a limited resource. Which means eventually the supply (you) will be exhausted by the demand (others).
You have only a certain amount of time, energy, giftedness, resources and money. You’ve got only so much to give, and when it’s gone, it’s gone. At that point, everyone ceases to be served. In order to serve at the highest level, for the longest possible time, you must preserve the resource.
People like the idea that they can juggle many balls at the same time. It can make us feel like we’re more important. But the truth is, you may not actually need to do everything you’re trying to do, and cutting items off your list can be a good thing.
While you may think it’s critical that you stay on top of every detail, that’s not really what’s most important. We must identify tasks that may not be worth the time and eliminate them. We must learn to simplify, reduce, and in fact “do less” in order to “accomplish more”. Not everyone who wants “just five minutes” from you can have it. You must preserve the resource (you) and learn to say “no”.
Block out time to work on your top priorities. Do your most important tasks or your meaningful, creative tasks first, before the distractions and interruptions pile up. Designating specific times to focus on your highest priorities will help you screen out your lowest priorities.
Include buffers in your schedule for taking breaks, as well as for accommodating urgent requests or performing administrative duties. When the time block for your top priorities expires (or your energy drops and attention wanes), you can use the white space on your calendar to unwind, perform reactionary work or do routine tasks.
Summing-up: You are a limited resource, so you have to be strategic about what you’re going to do.