Your attitude toward time has an enormous impact on your behavior and your choices.
People who take a long view of their lives and careers always seem to make much better decisions about their time and activities than people who give very little thought ot the future.
Long-term thinking improves short-term decision making.
Successful people have a clear future orientation. They think 5, 10, 20 years out into the future. They analyze their choices and behaviors in the present to make sure that what they are doing today is consistent with the long-term future that they desire.
When considering whether to do or not do something, ask yourself if it has any consequences for your long-term vision. If you do this instead of setting deadlines for everything, you won’t feel stressed for missing most of them. Instead, focus on the most important task, and give it 20% extra time so you can do it really well.
Ask yourself these questions regularly to find your focus:
- What are my highest value activities
- What can I and only I do that if done well will make a real difference?
- Is this the most valuable use of my time right now?
Accurately answering these questions will make it easier for people to set proper priorities and overcome procrastination.
The consequences of a task determine its value. Whether positive or negative, the greater the consequences, the more important the task. Productive, successful people analyze what they are doing now to make sure it contributes to their long-term goals. They sacrifice short-term gratification for long-term gratification knowing that the rewards will be higher.
Keep asking: What’s the one thing which, if I did really well, could create the biggest positive impact in my work and life? Apply this question to find the best thing to do every hour starting right now.