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Lesson 4. Finishing a Day's Work in Advance > The 30-Second Recap - Pg. 20

Finishing a Day's Work in Advance 20 Self-Determination, Your Power Tool In Lesson 2, we created a task matrix. This is one of the best tools you can use to plan the week ahead. When you get into the task list habit, you'll become a better time manager, simply by trial and error. Here are some other time-planning techniques to add to your toolbox: · Own your own time--You wouldn't let someone help himself to your cash, would you? Why let that person dig into your time? You can control interruptions by having a ready response, such as, "I'd like to help you with that problem. If you send me an e-mail/note/memo, I can give it the attention that it deserves when I'm through here." · Just say "No"--It's not easy to do, so we don't often say it. Here's an exercise to help you learn to be positive while delivering the negative. At the end of each week for four weeks, write down the requests that you should have turned down. Now write down why it didn't work out, or why you felt burdened by it. That's the reason that you'll give next time you get a similar request. · Prioritize and protect--Ask yourself if you're working on the most important project. Have you scheduled enough time to do it? When you have created the time blocks outlined in Lesson 2, guard them. You can't make time go faster or slower, but you can keep a to-do list, freeing up your mind to tackle the work. You can't manage every minute of your day, and no one is saying that you should. What's important is to plan ahead for the big chunks of time to get the work done. It's also important to give yourself a few breaks. Scheduling in 15 minutes for quiet reflection or a walk around the building can provide just the change in mental attitude that you need to be efficient in business and to continue to enjoy life. The 30-Second Recap