7 Days to Better Time Management

Found Time-7 Days to Achieve More Without Working More

Master the art of time management in just 7 days! George & Mary-Lynn tell you more below, and on The BIGG Success Show Podcast. Click play.

Are you a reader or a doer? Of course, the two aren’t mutually exclusive. However, there’s an interesting phenomenon in our hyper-busy world.

We read books. We file them away, physically or virtually. We forget about them.

We search. We bookmark posts. We never go back.

We check our inbox. We stash emails away. We lose track of them.

Sound familiar?

The New York Times rang in the New Year with an interesting post, The Unending Anxiety of an ICYMI world. (In case you’re wondering, ICYMI stands for “in case you missed it.”)

The author of the NYT piece says, “While the extended phrase has been used in conversation for a long time, the shorthand betrays an anxiety central to the Internet epoch. There is simply too much readable, viewable and listenable data for anyone to stay abreast of.”

Information is useless, unless it’s converted to knowledge.
And knowledge is wasted until it’s applied.

But that’s hard to do with a constant stream of information. What is one to do?

We have the answer. We call it the 7 Days, 7 Minutes series.

Would you commit a minute a day, for a week, to form a new habit critical to your BIGG success?

Since we designed this series to help you build new habits in no time, it seemd only appropriate to make our first installment about time management. It’s called Found Time: 7 Days to Achieve More Without Working More.

Each day, you quickly gain an insight about managing your time better. Then we tell you how to swiftly put your newfound knowledge to use so you truly start accomplishing more, without working more.

All you have to do is dedicate a minute a day and follow the prompts! Simple, yet highly effective.

Imagine hitting your deadlines. Reaching your goals. Enjoying your evenings and weekends. You’re only 7 days away from being able to do all these things and more.

Get instant access to Found Time: 7 Days to Achieve More Without Working More

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:

Freedom To-Do App

This App Gets Rid of Your To-Do List

Freedom To-Do App

Is your to-do list stressing you out? Get some relief! The Freedom To-Do List app creator joins us today on The BIGG Success Show.

Today we’re talking with Dr. Jim Steffen. He’s a time management expert, and author of Bestseller Aligned Thinking: Get The Most From Your Time, Life And Career – which is based on his thirty years of research around the world and in 160 Fortune 500 Companies.

Jim has created a new FREE app available now in the iTunes store called the To-Do List Freedom app – designed to help anyone relieve to-do list stress and frustration.

Listen to our interview to learn:

· The danger to-do lists have on your health
· The problem with putting everything on a to-do list
· Why Jim’s “holding list” concept helps you prioritize
· What outstanding people do and don’t do

You can find Jim’s FREE To-Do List Freedom app in the iTunes store for iPhone and iPad. If you don’t have one of those, just visit for a free tutorial on how to avoid to-do list frustration.

More To-Do List Help

Become a free member of our Entreprenurturing™ Center to hear our extended discussion with Jim where you’ll also learn:

· The 2 simple yet important questions to ask yourself about time
· How to be efficient AND effective

Plus, we provide a download of just the section in the interview where Jim talks about how app works so you can quickly review how to use it once downloaded to your iPhone or iPad.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:

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Success as an Entrepreneur is NOT a Marathon

Run races for BIGG SuccessYou often hear people say that the race for BIGG success as an entrepreneur is a marathon. We think they’re wrong.

In fact, we don’t think it’s a race at all. You don’t run one race – you run races. Plural.

Listen to this post! Click a player to hear George & Mary-Lynn on the BIGG Success Show podcast. (Duration 5:00)

iPhone/iPad/Mobile Podcast Player

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A series of sprints

And they’re not marathons, they’re sprints. You reach BIGG success as an entrepreneur by running a series of sprints.

You sprint every day. You strive to get to the finish line in the fastest time possible. Only then – unlike a sprinter who has just completed a race in the athletic world – you line up for another one!

Sure, you may take a short break between races, but you’re driven. You have more work you love to do. So you keep pushing day after day, from one sprint to another.

A money management principle applied to time management

Now there’s a reason why we think making this distinction – between a marathon and a series of sprints – is important. It has to do with conditioning.

Don’t train for a slow, steady, long race. Prepare yourself for fast, hard-charging bursts!

So rather than run – run – run – rest, think run – rest – run – rest.

This is a concept we can apply from money management to time management. It’s called duration matching.

When dealing with money, you want to match the duration of your debt to the expected life of the asset that debt is financing. Do something similar with your time.

If you’re not running a marathon, if you’re in a series of sprints, take frequent, short breaks rather than longer ones. Get away from your work every hour or two.

An important part of rest

But just as important as when you rest is how you rest. The BIGG idea behind BIGG success is synergy.

The right rest at the right time ramps up your running ability.

So while you get the rest you need, you don’t give up anything for it. In fact, quite the opposite – you get even more done.

If you’re a long-time reader, you know we believe in life blend. And this run – rest concept is part of that. You need variety. It’s up to you what it is, but it’s a custom blend.

If it works for you, it works! For example:

  • We often take quick breaks where stand up, stretch our legs and clue each other in to what we’re working on. One of us may have an idea the other hadn’t thought about.
  • We often find that when we step away from my desk for just a minute or two – to grab a cup of coffee, walk around or get outside – it often helps us get unstuck.
  • Another thing we’re fitting into the blend is to make sure we exercise. It doesn’t mean the brain shuts off. It just means we work the body too.
  • But sometimes shutting the brain off is just the thing. Research
    published in
    Psychological Science suggests that mindless tasks which allow your thoughts to roam can be springboards for creative thinking.

Participants in the study were presented with a creative challenge. Immediately after, the first group performed an intellectually demanding task while a second group did an undemanding one.

The researchers concluded that doing a mindless task allows your brain to wander more.

So next time you get stuck – mop the floor, file away some papers or clean off your desk.

Take frequent, short rest breaks so you can keep sprinting to BIGG success!

What do you think? Is the race for success a marathon or a series of sprints? How often do you rest?

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:

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What is Your Ideal Day?

Our ideal day balcony view | BIGG Success
Our friend, Jason Womack, has a fantastic new book called Your Best Just Got Better. One of the concepts in his book is the Ideal Day.

He says that “envisioning your Ideal Day can make a major impact on your creativity, productivity and quality of life.” So he’s promoting the Ideal Day Campaign.

And we’re participating! Here are our Ideal Days:

[Mary-Lynn] I open my balcony door to hear the glorious sound of the ocean. The constant motion gives me peace. I enjoy a cup of coffee as I watch the waves in amazement. I begin my day reading some inspiring work from online friends, and share those articles with others on my social media spaces. Then I get to work…forward motion like the waves…creating content and tools to help our clients move forward, to live life on their own terms. I take a break during the day to get in some exercise. I feel so much better mentally and physically when I do this. At the end of the day, I go for a stroll along the ocean with my husband and business partner, holding his hand, feeling the water touch my feet.

[George] I wake up early without an alarm and go to the kitchen to make a pot of coffee. I feed our cat Fraidy after giving him some attention. Then I grab that extra strong first cup as the coffee still percolates. I ease into the day by reading the Bible and spending some quiet time in prayer and contemplation. I see a hint of sunshine through the window and look out at the glimmer on the great expanse of water. What a wonderful day this will be! I step out onto the balcony with my computer and check my e-mail. I exchange messages with friends, colleagues and clients. Now it’s time to get to work, so I start doing the work I love. We create a lot of content every week and I’m most creative in the morning. By mid-morning, it’s time for a break. Mary-Lynn and I walk down to the white sandy beach and go for a long, brisk walk. Then it’s back to work. I spend the rest of the work day conversing, researching and planning. Mary-Lynn and I enjoy our dinner on our balcony, overlooking the ocean. I close the day with some light reading as I enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of nature.

The first thing you may notice is who makes the coffee in our house!

We wrote these independently but you’ll notice the similarity between them. That’s because we frequently discuss our individual and mutual visions.

Fortunately, we both share similar affinities and dreams. Maybe that’s why we can spend so much time together without fighting (much)!

We vacation in a coastal area every chance we get. In fact, the photo above is the view from our balcony the last time we did.

It’s also true that we live our Ideal Day most days, without the ocean. We love where we live; we have so many wonderful friends here. But down the road, we will spend much more time every year by BIGG water!

What’s your Ideal Day? Share it here or better yet – post it on your blog. Then go over to Jason’s blog and let him know.

While you’re there, you can get a free chapter of Your Best Just Got Better. You can even sign up to have your Ideal Day funded by Jason!

Image in this post from our vacation set on Flickr

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Should You Stop Making a Daily To-Do List?

stop making to-do lists for BIGG SuccessLinkedIn recently released the results of a survey about to-do lists. Of the 6,500 professionals queried:

  • Almost two out of three (63%) stated that they regularly create a daily to-do list.
  • Yet just a little over one out of ten (11%) said they regularly complete all the tasks in a given day.
  • Agricultural workers had the highest success rate. They work fast so they can get back home and make sure some stranger isn’t hitting on their daughter.
  • Legal professionals were the least productive. They spend too much time messing with their briefs.

The most frequent reason cited for not completing their to-do list was “unplanned tasks”. These include “unscheduled phone calls, e-mails and meetings”.

We’ll share three suggestions to make sure you are more like a farmer and less like a lawyer.

Make a “to-don’t” list

Let’s not take the professionals in the survey at face value just yet. Let’s assume for just a minute that there’s another reason for the shortcoming.

What if the truth is that they are just unproductive too much of time? Let’s face it – it’s easy to fritter away a day these days.

The temptations are ever present – texts from friends, social networking, etc. It’s especially difficult for entrepreneurs who aren’t accountable to anyone for their time.

To make matters, it may be easy to justify the time. The line between productive and unproductive can be a very fine one.

We know from personal experience. Like us, you may have to ask yourself some hard questions. For example:

  • When networking online, are you making valuable connections or just playing with friends? 
  • When surfing the web, are you conducting valuable research or just feeding a fancy? 
  • Even worse, are you moving forward or pushing off something you know you need to do but don’t really want to right now?

You may be better served by doing something unusual. Stop making a daily to-do list, at least for awhile.

You may find it helpful to make a “to-don’t” list instead. These are things you want to stop yourself from doing when it’s time to be productive.

Make a list. Display it prominently. When you find yourself starting to stray from what you know you need to do, take a look at the list.

If the activity you’re about to partake in is on the list, stop. Then go back to work!

Of course, you need to plan for some “down” time in your day. Complete a task. Then reward yourself with a goody from your to-don’t list.

A sticky daily to-do list

If day after day, you can’t complete all of the tasks on your to-do list, the answer may be a simple one – plan to do less.

Before we dive deeper, though, we should make one cautionary note: Be honest with yourself.

It may be worthwhile to conduct a time audit for a day:

  • When you start working, set an alarm to go off in fifteen minutes. 
  • When it sounds, write down what you’re doing. 
  • Set the alarm for another fifteen minutes. Write down what you’re doing. 
  • Repeat until you stop working.

Now look at your notes. If you didn’t accomplish everything you wanted to, you have too much of something:

  • too much play
  • too much work

If it’s the former, make the to-don’t list we discussed above. If it’s the latter, you’re simply trying to do too much.

It’s a common symptom among BIGG goal-getters. We tend to think we can accomplish way more than is humanly possible.

So to keep yourself out of that trap, get out a 3″ x 3″ sticky note. Draw an X through it.

You now have 4 triangles. Write down the four most important things for you to accomplish today.

If the task can’t be described in the triangle, it’s too much to take on. Carve it up into smaller tasks.

By the way, it’s okay to write down less than four tasks. But by using a small sticky note, you won’t be tempted to write down more.

You’ll feel so much better if you regularly complete your daily to-do list. You’ll be energized. You’ll feel more confidence. And besides that, you’ll reach BIGG success!

How do you make sure you complete your daily to-do list?

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