How do you accomplish personal goals with a full schedule of activities?
I have a full time job, side gig and two small kids. Time is a precious commodity.
My family priorities are most important. My full time job pays the bills.That leaves little time for my entrepreneurial goals.
Carving out time for MY goals is a necessity.
I work seven days a week. We have activities planned for most of the day and night. A packed schedule forces me to make the most of every minute.
How Do I Stay Focused?
I use a simple system.
I call it the 3X5 method.
I’ve been following this for about a year. Here’s how it works.
Before I go to bed, I prioritize the most important daily goals for the next day. I write them down on a 3x5 index card.
I follow three simple guidelines for this system.
Write down the top seven things you want to accomplish. Prioritize your list from most important to least important.
I work on all the tasks in order. Here is the key.
I always finish one task before moving on to the next one.
Do not move onto number two before you finish number one.
The Top Three Rule
Each day, I have a list of seven to nine items. There is one unbreakable rule.
I must finish the first three items. No matter what I have to do, those are the ones that must get done.
After finishing the third daily goal, I give myself a reward. The reward is small. It could be reading thirty minutes of mindless fiction, a square of dark chocolate or time alone.
After the reward, I continue on with my list. Everything after number three is a nice to have. This framework cuts down on the stress of feeling like you must accomplish something.
On average I complete six items on my goal list.
Never Do This
Your 3x5 list should only contain your goals, your desires or your priorities. Never make someone else’s priority your priority. I use the 3x5 method to fulfill my dreams, not someone else’s.
Here is what my list looks like today.
- Write a new story (10–23)
- Edit 10–22 story
- Publish 10–22 story
- One chapter of book
- Sales Letter (MW course)
- Update content list
Here is a picture of my current card. I divide it into four sections. Each index card lasts me four days. That means your $2.00 box of cards goes a long way.
Here are a few other guidelines I follow that seem to help me stay on track.
Each daily goal should range fifteen to forty-five minutes. This number might vary for different individuals. Start with a max of forty-five and adjust as you see fit.
It’s worth repeating. Never start on one task without finishing the one before it. This is the most important rule.
Warm up to the process with small, easy goals first. It helps build the habit.
That’s the whole system in five-hundred words.