Publisher and Managing Editor for The Retail Observer
For years, I was one of those people who started my new year with new business goals.
And like “those” people, I found myself in April back to the drawing board to layout new
plans that were more realistic and attainable. However, deep inside, I knew that the goals
I originally set out for myself could have been reached if I just stuck to my original plan. That’s
when I began to reflect on why so many “other” people seem to soar on the wings of their
aspirations while others stay grounded frantically flapping and getting seemingly nowhere.
According to David Allen, author of Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity,
most of us have anywhere from 30 – 100 projects on our to-do list at any one given time. YIKES!
Makes sense why so many of us struggle with prioritizing our lists. But he argues that even if we
were given more time, most of us wouldn’t accomplish more than we are right now and would
only fill the extra time with feeling more overwhelmed and anxious.
Let’s get real, when it comes down to it, we all have the same amount of time each day. To be
exact, 24 hours, 1,440 minutes and 86,440 seconds. All the great minds in history had the same
amount of time too – from Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein to Leonardo da Vinci – and they were
able to accomplish wondrous achievements with limited technology and some with the added
responsibility of raising 10 or more children. So, time is clearly not the issue!
We can only reach a level Allen calls “sophisticated spontaneity” when we stop keeping
things in our heads and begin systematically choosing what to focus on and how to spend our
time. I found that getting everything out of my head and into a workable system so that my mind
and time are free to focus on the task at hand has taken me a lot farther than previously
misguided New Year’s resolution lists.
Whatever way you choose to free your mind to make the most of your time this year, I recommend
that you forget your resolutions, if you truly want to go from proficient to productive!