The “Getting Things Done” philosophy has helped me make better, clearer plans for achieving my goals. I want to share with you some of the best points of this philosophy so you can use them in your plans as well. First though, a brief introduction on what “Getting Things Done” is.
After looking around and getting my hands on every course, book or program that crosses my way, I have come to realize that there are but a few really integral solutions in the matter of developing and executing a personal development plan.
One of those, the best in my opinion, is “Getting Things Done“, by David Allen. I consider “Getting Things Done”, or GTD for short, an integral solution because it guides you through the whole process, from Organizing, to Planning, to Execution. You can start from being completely lost and without knowing what to do, and end up with a well structured, clearly organized and prioritized action list that will make taking action as easy as it can ever be.
Regarding personal development plans, GTD has many strong points that make it the obvious choice. It covers project management in depth, a vital skill since personal development is one f the biggest projects in your life. It also covers time and life management, something particularly useful when it comes to taking the plan into action. Probably the best point is its task prioritizing aspect, which leads to better, more flexible plans that do not crumble at the first sight of trouble.
Besides personal development plans, GTD also helps you build the skills necessary for better managing work projects, better goal setting and better people management. These are all very important skills, whether you are an employee, a home business owner or an executive at a Fortune 500 company.
The points I want to share with you today are simple yet very effective when it comes to proper planning. These are two questions that you should ask yourself, and answer every time you are about to plan or do something. First, what is the outcome? Second, what is the next action required?
“What is the outcome?” is a the most important question you can ask yourself in almost any situation. It is a question common in all the teachings of the major gurus from Napoleon Hill and Earl Nightingale, to David Allen, Brian Tracy, Dan Kennedy and Tony Robbins. It is just that important.
If you do not know the outcome for your actions, you have lost from the start, period. Getting clear on your outcome will be one of the best things you can do at any given moment.
“What is the next action?” is just as important when planning something. Many times I have seen people who have found their clear outcome, yet are completely lost on where to start taking action about it. Knowing what to do next in order to move the plan forward is absolutely necessary.
The most important factor to consider here is that the next action has to be completely thought through. This is, it shall not require further consideration upon execution. When the rubber meets the road, if you need to stop and think, you will be run over. You need to have thought before.
If you master these two questions and apply them to your plans and to your life, you will see, not only your productivity, but your effectiveness as well, skyrocket into the stratosphere.
Take some time to reflect upon these two questions and decide to start applying them today!
I keep a journal and I write on it every single day. I can’t quite recall when I started writing a journal, but I know that I’ve been doing it for several years now. The first few times, I didn’t religiously write, but when I got the hang of it and saw just how good it is for me, it became a habit I’m quite proud of. If you have not written a journal before, or quit writing on your journal, here’s the reason why this activity is definitely worth your time.
Time well spent for yourself
This pretty much sums up the reason why keeping a journal is worth it. When you dedicate and spend time writing a journal on a daily basis, you are actually using that time for yourself. Moreover, this time is well spent because when you write a journal, you are doing several things that will benefit you in so many ways.
To be more specific, when you write, you:
Express yourself – You allow yourself to feel the rawest of all emotions and express it through writing. You either immediately write on your journal when you are in the peak of an emotion or you recall what that certain event felt like then express it through a vivid description. Expressing yourself is a benefit because when you share feelings, even through writing, you relieve stress. When you keep negative emotions bottled up, you will feel heavy inside. If you don’t express it in any way, it will add up to other future negative experiences. This could make you depressed. You could break down or suddenly burst in anger or sadness.
Additionally, writing on your journal also teaches you to better express yourself and describe what you are going through. The more you are able to explain your feelings, the more you will be able to understand yourself.
Reflect – Another benefit is you reflect on your actions. When you recall a day’s worth of experience and write about what you went through, you get a clear picture of the things you did. While doing so, you reflect on these actions, whether it was good or bad, or whether it was meaningful or not. This is a benefit because you can ponder on your actions and you have the choice to make an appropriate or necessary change.
Relieve Stress – Writing is a therapeutic activity. When you write, share, and talk about things that bothered you or made your day stressful, you take some weight off your shoulders.
Cultivate Happiness – This is in regards to positive emotions. When you write about the happy things that happened to your day, you will cultivate that emotion and enhance it. When you see just how happy you are, you become more overjoyed about it and, as a result, become even happier.
How long have you been writing a journal? What benefits have you gotten from it? Share your comments in the field below.
In the workplace, there’s only one thing you want to achieve and consistently have, productivity. How do you ensure that you are constantly maximizing productivity? In my opinion, you only need to fulfill the basic things needed for a productive day and you’ll be able to maximize your productivity. The basics are the following:
To ensure that you work well, you have to be in your best physical condition. Notice that it’s practically impossible to work at your best if you are sick or not feeling too good? Work in a healthy body. There are basically two things to fulfill in order to ensure that your body will perform well. These are to eat the right foods and to get the right amount of sleep.
Eat what is required of you. Eat three times a day. Your mind won’t be able to churn out great ideas if you work on an empty stomach. Additionally, you won’t be able to move well or run errands, if you’re body lacks energy. The key is nutritious and protein rich foods.
As for sleep, you need it because this is your body’s way or regaining the energy spent the previous day. Sleep at the right time and at the required length. A good night’s rest for about 7 to eight hours will do you great.
In order to properly maximize productivity, you need utmost concentration. To gain that, you need to have a clear mind. Remove all the clutter and unnecessary thoughts in your head. Think only of the task at hand. This is obviously easier said than done, especially since you can’t stop your brain from thinking of other things every once in a while.
To deal with thoughts that aren’t related to your present task, write them down on a piece of paper. A sticky note or notepad would do nicely for this. Once you’ve written down that thought, dismiss it from your stream of thoughts for the moment and get back to it once all your tasks are finished. You can place that sticky note on a board somewhere on your walls or set aside the notepad on a separate drawer where you won’t easily see what you’ve written. Literally out of sight, out of mind.
Another aspect of the mind is focus. Aside from removing distractions from your head, you gain focus by providing yourself a map or guide to the tasks you have to do. The easy and fast way to do this is via a to-do-list. Write the specific tasks that you need to accomplish for the day. If a task needs more attention than others, prioritize it and put it at the top of your list. Additionally, when working on these tasks, try not to divide your attention by working on several tasks at a time. If you concentrate on one task, you’ll be able to finish it at a quicker time than when multitasking. Divided attention calls for slower focus on each task you are attending to.
It’s a new beginning once again. It’s the New Year. The beginning of the year is the best time to think about the future and what lies ahead. It’s also a time to think about making improvements and changes in your life. The most common method to make changes happen is through resolutions. This article will guide you through making resolutions for the year ahead.
Making resolutions is comprised of searching for possible resolutions, deciding on which to work on for the year, and setting them.
Searching for Resolutions
In this step, you need to come up with resolutions. In order to do that, look through yourself and your life. How is it? Does it need some changing or improvements? What do you have to do to make the life you’re living a much happier one? In which area do you need changes? What kind of changes can you make?
Look at all the possible areas in your life, from yourself to your surroundings. Make a list of probable changes and improvements you think your life can do right now, and then proceed to the next step.
What to Work On
Right about now, you have a list of items which have potential of becoming your resolutions for this year. What are you to do now? It’s time to decide which one you’re going to work on.
Yes, you can have several resolutions, but if your list is too long or has several items that are particularly difficult to attain, you might not be able to finish them all. Take note that resolutions usually mean you’re going to make a change with yourself or with your life, and the reality is, changes don’t happen overnight. They take time and for the change to become fully ingrained in your system, you also need to put in a lot of dedication. What I’m trying to say is, a year might not be enough to fulfill all of your resolutions especially if the changes you listed require so much of your time and energy. Hence, you need to choose only a few.
How do you choose which ones to set and how many is enough? Choose based on its value to you. Which one is more important to you personally? Which item do you think will make your life much happier? Which changes will make you become one step closer to your goals? Think about these questions and cross out those that you can live without for now. As for how many you should have, it really depends on the type of your resolutions, but a safe number would be about five. Remember though, that if your resolutions are high maintenance, then you should have at most three items, so that you can concentrate and not get spread too thin.
If you’ve chosen which changes you’d like to make, you can now set your resolutions for the year.
Setting Resolutions for the Year
Setting resolutions is not just about writing down your resolutions. You need to declare them as well. Declaring can be done by simply giving it a label such as “My Resolutions for the Year 2013”. In addition to giving it a proper heading, also announce it to your friends and family. If you’re too shy to share it with all your loved ones, pick a few special people and share it with them. These friends will then serve as your supervisors. They’ll check up on you once in a while, cheer you on, and even give you advice on how to achieve your goals. You could even set resolutions with them so that you’ll cross the finish line with a partner.
After setting your resolutions, you need to do a lot more: research, planning, and making an action plan. To get details about these other steps, you can check out this article.