First the bad news: you can’t do it all.
That long to-do list you have staring at you? Working harder, longer and more frantically will not help you get all your boxes checked. The reason is because more tasks, more responsibilities, and more activities keep piling on. But the harder you try to do everything, the more frustrated you become.
The hard truth is that there simply isn’t enough time to do everything there is to do. Of course we know this intuitively, but for some reason we keep on trying to do it all—probably because we don’t really know what else to do.
And if you are like most men, one of the first things to go is your own fitness and health. Who has time to go to the gym when you are buried under 6 weeks of backlogged to-do’s?
Now for the good news: there is a way out.
You see, when you try to do everything, the most important tasks get mixed up with the least important tasks. The result is that you end up spending precious time on things that do not move you toward your goals. If you are doing things that do not move you toward your goals, you are, in fact, moving away from your goals.
You only have so much energy, and you only have so much time. The key is to make sure that you are focusing on the most important tasks.
The only way to sort through your to-do list and decide which tasks are the most important is to know where you are headed.
What are your goals? What things do you want to change? Where do you want to be in 6 months, 2 years, 5 years, 10 years? What is your goal in relation to your kids, your wife, your job? How is your health? How fit and healthy do you really want to be?
We’re looking at your top goals right now: the big ones. This doesn’t mean that you do not have other goals, but these are the ones that get priority no matter what else is going on.
Stop doing some things
Once you know what your goals are, you can take a critical look at how you spend your day.
Each day, you do a lot of things and you expend a lot of energy. Where are you focusing most of your best energy and concentration? Every task can be assigned a value—it is either a high value task or it is a low value task. High value tasks are those tasks that move you in the direction of your established goals. Low value tasks are those tasks that do not move you in the direction of your goals. It’s that simple.