There is no shortage of people (and books), that pledge help and tools to get organized. It’s hard enough to get organized. It can be particularly hard to stay organized. One of the biggest reasons is that the benefits cited are often short-term and the techniques offered are tactical. The headline is usually some form of “stress relief”. See the “Spare Capacity” post for an idea about achieving longer-term more durable stress relief. Along with the tactical, there must be strategic, long-term analysis and thinking.
What helps us STAY organized?
In two words: Knowing Why.
Having one or two or more long-term benefits in mind (to go along with the short-term ones), will help us keep up the consistent delaying of gratification that is required to stay organized. In “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Stephen Covey advised, “Begin with end in mind”. Asking ourselves about the time between now and our death is a great place to begin.
A couple of High-level Questions to consider:
“What are my values?”
When I look back on my life…
“What significant things will I want to have done?”
“How will I want to have been?”
“In what roles will I be most effective and efficient?”
When you have identified values most important to you and chosen roles in which to engage, you will have context for saying “no” to things you otherwise would have wrongly said “yes” to and saying “yes” to things that fit well into the person you want to be.
What do you think about this topic?
What has worked for you?
Jeff Linroth – Longmont