How do I know how to use my time?

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Need another course in Time Management?  You may have taken one or many of those courses and read countless articles on how to get it all done.  Everything seems to be important!  And there is never enough time to get it all done!

That is so true in work and life.  Several years ago I realized the stress from not completing everything on my To-Do list was hurting my well being.  I had to figure this out.  

First I had to realize that the solution was not adding more hours to my work day, it was eliminating some of the expected To-Dos.  But how do I know which ones to eliminate?  Emails, text messages or phone seem most urgent. But are they really?

After research, experimenting, and measuring my success, I latched on to a quick and easy way to select where to spend my time.  It works for how I will spend my time the next hour, day or weekend.

If I have two (or more) conflicting balls I’m juggling at one time, I decide which is crystal and which is rubber.

Crystal balls are those events important to my long term goals. If I don’t take this call or attend this event, I will drop that crystal ball and it will shatter. I will never be able to recover it. When I choose something else on my To-Do list, I am missing a critical point in reaching my goals.

Rubber balls are those items which bounce so I can get it done the next time it bounces up. Rubber ball events or projects are rarely so important to my long term goals that I must do them right now. 

First make sure you know your long-term goals.  What will really matter to your success and happiness in the next year or three years?  Write them down.  Now measure the top ten activities on your To-Do list today.  Which items are you juggling are crystal and which are rubber?  Handle the crystal ones first!

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