How to Create a Personal Productivity System That Works for You
As I’ve been on my own for seven years and made all the mistakes possible in business (but learned tons), here’s my strategy today.
Early in my business, I overcomplicated everything because I didn’t have a structure, the tools, or the experience of running a business.
Mostly I was looking at other people’s businesses and tried to do the same thing, and that’s how I ended up overcomplicating everything by adding unnecessary things to my business.
Even though we might share the same niche, it doesn’t mean our business and personal goals are the same.
Most importantly, our business should complement our lives.
Here’s how you can simplify, get organized and boost your productivity using the Eisenhower decision matrix by prioritizing tasks by urgency and importance.
“I have two kinds of problems: the urgent and the important. The urgent are not important, and the important are never urgent.” — Dwight D. Eisenhower
In today’s world Eisenhower matrix look like this:
Now that you’ve seen the quadrants, let’s go deeper.
1. Eliminate — what doesn’t aligns with your top priorities?
Anything that’s not related to your top goals should be eliminated.
Look at this quadrant from two angles:
- Time wasters like: watching Netflix in the middle of the day, scrolling social media, playing video games, doing laundry or dishes, etc.
- Notice if you’re procrastinating by planning, researching, and learning more. These are good, but make sure you plan these activities carefully to stay focused on what’s important.
2. Delegate — what can you delegate to someone else?
Not everything on the table should be managed by you.
I’ve been trapped in this cycle for some time, trying to do everything myself.
I used every excuse, from my business is too small to afford an employee or collaborator, I can do it better, to where I’ll find that person, etc.
I mostly felt frustrated by attending meetings that could be an email or managing administrative things rather than writing articles, creating content, teaching, and coaching people.
- What’s on the table that someone else can do better and faster than you?
- What tasks can you delegate that will give you more space to do what’s important, and only you can do it?
Remember: you go faster by asking for support.
3. Schedule/Automate — what’s important but not urgent?
This is the best place to be.
You feel relaxed knowing your top goals, know what tasks you should focus on, and have the mental space to plan and execute them carefully.
Usually, you end up here after taking care of the elimination and delegation quadrants.
4. Do — what do you need to do right away?
When you end up here, you mostly take care of urgent tasks, crises, and close deadlines and feel pressure to take them on. Do them fast so you can focus on what’s important and move further with your goals.
Make sure that how you spend your time and energy daily reflects what’s most important to you. So, be intentional and choose activities that align with your goals.