I am finally getting back to this series. I have no good excuse for the delay, especially considering I have been teaching time management in a series in my church. I think the delay has been good though because it has helped me organize my thoughts into something that might be more useful than just throwing out random ideas.
In my business, Vitabase, we like to focus on what we call holistic treatment. By that, I mean that we try to make the body healthier so it can fight off disease. Or, another way you could say it is that we endeavor to address problems from the top down rather than just trying to address symptoms.
I tend to look at time management in the same way. If you have problems managing time, your problems likely go deeper than you might think. Here is a chart that demonstrates what I mean.
At the bottom of this pyramid, you see tasks. There are numerous tasks that we could choose to do in a day but we do only a small subset of them. This is not a random process. Those decisions are made based on various objectives (short term goals) we have in our life. We do not decide on the objectives by accident. Those are determined by our priorities. Priorities come from our life plan. Your life plan refers to what you think is important in life and what role you play.
Here is a simple example. Let’s say that you have a child named Johnny in the first grade. You might make decisions based on this process.
Life Plan: My responsibility is for Johnny to be reared and equipped with the tools to be successful in life.
Priority: Johnny’s education
Objective: Johnny needs to know how to read.
Task: Read with Johnny for 30 minutes a day.
See how this works? Your decision to take 30 minutes a day to read with Johnny does not originate from a vacuum. It goes back ultimately to what you believe about life.
For this reason, it is important to start a real discussion about time management with a discussion of a life plan. That is where I am going to focus in the next blog on this subject.