I came across an article a week ago that seemed crazy to me at first. The author, Michelle L Bryant, stated that the key to success and effectively managing your time is to only ever spend 10 minutes on every task that you undertake. My first reaction was to scoff and close the browser window. However, curiosity got the better of me and I opened for a second read.
What I learned is this:
The principle is simple – If a task takes you more than 10 minutes to complete, it should be broken down into smaller tasks, or part of it should be delegated.
There are no exceptions to this rule – If you are starting to feel that a task couldn’t possibly be completed in under 10 minutes, ask yourself if it can be broken down into smaller/shorter tasks.
In the beginning – Even if it doesn’t quite go to plan at the beginning, by tracking your time and noticing where you are going over the 10 minute mark, you will have a better idea of just where all that time goes each day.
Everything means everything! – This could be applied to both working life AND personal life (dishes without a dishwasher don’t need to take so long if I break it into 10 minutes washing and 10 minutes drying!)
My Personal Test
So, this morning I allocated 10 minutes to reading, sorting & deleting emails. I didn’t pretend that I could action every email in that 10 minutes. Yet when my phone beeped at the end of the time, I was pleasantly surprised to see that my day was already clearly mapped out for me. I had actionable emails, minus the unnecessary distracting content. I already felt productive and I was only 10 minutes into my day – sounds good to me!
Have a try for yourself and let us know how it works for you! Please share your experiences below.
And remember “By far, the most effective means of finding additional time in your day is to outsource the things on your to-do list that someone else can easily do in 10 minutes or less.”