-Do the most important task on your to-do list first.
-Everything on my list is important.
When I started The Time Diet almost three years ago, my goal was to combat this type of thinking. The “priority paralysis” described above causes stress, unfocused work, and forces people to somehow decide which is more important: finishing a task for work, or taking time to relax and do something enjoyable.
With The Time Diet, I took importance out of the equation in favor of balance. I teach people how to label their tasks as either a Meat, Vegetable, or Dessert and choose a balanced selection of tasks each day. I’ve found, however, that the definition of Meat Task has morphed a bit, and it has created far too many time management carnivores. If you feel like all you do are Meat Tasks, let me help!
A Meat Task is Something Difficult, Not Just Important
In The Time Diet, your Meats are your difficult tasks, your Vegetables are your easier tasks, and your Desserts are your enjoyable tasks. The importance of a task has nothing to do with how it’s classified. If you look at your list and everything seems to be a Meat, ask yourself: “Is everything on this list really of equal difficulty?” Perhaps you are falling into the trap of labeling tasks with urgent deadlines Meats, even if they are easy to complete.
Meat Tasks can Have Vegetable Components
Even if you are staring down a big, difficult Meat task, it’s unlikely that every single component of that task is difficult. Learning to break up big tasks into much smaller pieces allows you to appropriately label easier parts as Vegetables.
A Vegetable for You Might be a Meat for Someone Else
I hesitate to give too many examples of Meats, Vegetables, and Desserts because the designations change drastically from person to person. If writing comes easily to you, drafting an email or a memo might be a simple Vegetable, but to those who struggle to find the right words, it might be a formidable Meat. For a fitness enthusiast, going to the gym might be an enjoyable Dessert, but to others it might be their least-desirable Vegetable.
Finding Your Balance
Remember, the whole point of The Time Diet is to ensure that your schedule consists of a balanced diet of Meats, Vegetables, and Desserts each day so you don’t become overwhelmed with difficult tasks and neglect to make any time for yourself. Learning to properly label these tasks requires practice, and the discipline to remain focused while working through your list. Thank you readers! I hope that The Time Diet has played at least a small part in helping you conquer your time management goals.
For a more detailed explanation of The Time Diet time management system, check out “The Time Diet: Digestible Time Management” on Amazon.com
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