Harvey Mackay famously said that “Time is free, but it's priceless. You can't own it, but you can use it. You can't keep it, but you can spend it. Once you've lost it you can never get it back.”
Today I am talking not about to do lists which I last discussed in episode 99, in some detail I might add, but about a very special list that is perhaps even more important.
Your NOT TO DO LIST.
I first heard about this through Tim Ferris but it’s another idea that comes from Warren Buffet and in an earlier show FOCUS ON 3 THINGS I touched upon that. He said when prioritizing your goals that you should choose 25 and focus on 5 of them but under no circumstances whoever do any work at all on the on the other 20.
By knowing what you want to avoid, you can focus your energy instead on the things you want to do and maximize your productivity.
Tim Ferris's’ Not-To-Do List is as follows
1. Don’t answer calls from unrecognized numbers.
2. Don’t email first thing in the morning or last thing at night.
3. Don’t agree to meetings or calls with no clear agenda or end time.
4. Don’t let people ramble.
5. Don’t check email constantly — “batch” and check at set times only
6. Don’t over-communicate with low-profit, high-maintenance customers
7. Don’t work more to fix overwhelm — prioritize
8. Don’t carry a cellphone 24/7
9. Don’t expect work to fill a void that non-work relationships and activities should
But as creatives our lists should be much more expansive.
Optimizing time – not to do list is everything.
What do you want to do less of at work? Meetings? Or some other thing? Matt reference.
Who do you want to work with less?
What sort of jobs go against your values?
Are there any aspects of our job that you want to stop doing?
Are there specific companies or people you want to stop working with?
What do you stop eating? Drinking?
What household tasks do you hate doing?
What bad habits do you want to stop?
What personal commitments are unhealthy?
What was the unhappiest moment that has happened within the last year that was within your control?
What are you spending to much money on but that you know that you shouldn’t?
Look at your calendar – remind yourself of what you liked doing and what you didn’t
Identify patterns and note down anything you think you need to stop doing.
Call to Action
Time and energy are finite resources but we rarely budget our time with the same rigor we use for our finances. To achieve your highest priorities, it’s important to be strategic about how you spend your time and creating a not-to-do list will help you prioritize the stuff that really matters. Any items that aren’t important or urgent or that slow you down or steal away your energy and resources should go on your not-to-do list. You may even consider taking a leaf out of Warren Buffet’s book and calling it an under no circumstances whatsoever do any of this list.
On next weeks show I’ll talk about Parkinson’s Law.
I’ll end now with the words of Michelangelo who said There is no greater harm than that of time wasted.
Now take control of your own destiny, keep on shootin’ and join me next time on FILM PRO PRODUCTIVITY AND SUCCESS!
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Season 8 Executive Producer: David Richard Thompson
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