Blogger: Wendy Lawton
Location: Books & Such Central Valley Office, California
So did you find an area or two in which to ramp up your organizational skills? One of the fun things about taking a quiz like the one I posted on Tuesday is not seeing where you may have fallen short, but finding areas in which to grow.
My advice is to:
- Tackle one area at a time.
- Spend some time analyzing how you currently work.
- Research how others handle that task.
- Choose the system that seems like it will work best for you.
- Put it into practice.
- Give it enough of a trial to work past the discomfort that always accompanies the unfamiliar.
- Decide if it’s working for you. If not, start over with #4.
Next you’d want to observe how you currently handle email. Let’s say all your email goes into one inbox. When you sit down at your computer most mornings, you scan all the email subject headings, opening the interesting ones and ignoring others. You leave them all to deal with later— some opened, some not. You check email several times a day, reading the fun ones and letting the others pile up. You only sit down to work on your inbox when it’s so full it’s making you crazy.
Okay, so you need to investigate other methods. You go online and google “managing email.” Amazing. You find out that your own email system already has automatic ways to filter your email, putting each category into a different inbox. You figure out how to create the rules to do that. Voila! Not hard at all. Now you look at all the ways of efficiently dispatching email, maybe like those found in David Allen’s Getting Things Done. You put the new system into practice. Now you’re cooking.
Once efficient handling of email is a habit, you’ll be ready to tackle the next problem area. It’s like the old question: How do you eat an elephant?
One spoonful at a time.