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How Do You Get It All Done?

by Robyn Tippins on October 20, 2006

Getting to done is often not possible. I sometimes spend morning to evening working, just to fall into bed to do it again tomorrow. A few days of this means I have to take a day off to recoup lost time with the kids and just to exist, and that can’t be helpful. In fact, I think it means I spend more ‘tired’ time trying to get things done, when I still end up behind and busy.

I’ve been a 43Folders reader for sometime now (a year?) and I’m embarrased to admit that I just don’t follow Merlin’s advice well:

Get pickier – You are the sole person in your life who gets to decide where your time and attention can go. Take that responsibility seriously by not wasting time on junk. You know in your heart what’s really important to you — does the current direction of your time and attention reflect that? Is “kid hugging” time where it should be in proportion to “Blackberry checking” time? Be mindful at the highest level about where you focus your energy, and always strive not to squander it on undeserving activities.

Today I read Holly’s email communication advice and I’m determining to do better in this department:

Now, before you go beating yourself up about all the time you’re spending on e-mails and blogs remember this: these pastimes aren’t just hollow time fillers. By engaging in either or both you are recording your personal history and journaling your life and that’s one BIG check on the “most important things” list. A few years ago, I was kicking myself for not being more consistent with my journal writing when I realized that I have the most detailed and amazing journal/history in daily e-mails with my mom. I started to convert them into a document and was amazed at how much detail there was and I’ve never looked at my online correspondence the same way since. You can even use your e-mail to send yourself reminders, calendar items, etc. Just one more really positive, though less visible, benefit of time spent using it.

The downside of all this benefit is that making it easier to communicate with more people also means MORE time. E-mail groups and daily “checking” can turn into hours of activity in front of the computer. This can and will make you absolutely nuts if other things are slipping as a result. So what do we do?

We all want to be Super Affiliates ($10K+ per month) and Adsense Kings, speak on the circuit, give time away to collaborative efforts and somehow write award winning content so we can make the Technorati Top 100 (or shoot, even the top 1K LOL). But you just can’t do it all.

No you can’t. Trust me, there is no one that fits into your ‘perfect model’. You’ll have to pick a few things and shelve the rest for now. Or, I guess you can become a basket case, but that doesn’t pay very well…

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Ted Demopoulos October 21, 2006 at 1:35 pm

I was recently reminded that just as important as deciding what we’re going to do is deciding what we are NOT going to do.

There is only so much time in a lifetime!

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Robyn Tippins October 21, 2006 at 2:03 pm

Yes, and speaking of which, I have GOT to get with you on that talk we spoke of. I covet your expertise :)

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