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Balance Your Agenda

Some perfectly live with one. Others do very well without one. 

I cannot live without an agenda. Things are happening here, an event there, another call scheduled somewhere between a meeting and a proposal. 

There is just no stopping when one tries to slot corporate obligations like the blocks in a Tetris game. 

These days, we can synchronize our calendar with online appointment software that connects this with whatever app to set up tasks, calls and deadlines to meet. It’s a revolution on technological advances driven to be more efficient and allow the computer to do some of the work for us.

It may save time and synchronize aspects but does it have all the productive benefits it says it deliver?

Without technology, we certainly would not be able to do everyday tasks that were not normal a decade ago. The revolution of these inventions has both advantages and disadvantages and will continue. 

On the latter, my handwriting has become almost next to indecipherable 😉

An agenda aligns the tasks set for what lies ahead, and voila, we have our work cut out for us.

The above summary leans towards how we use our agenda for tasks to complete, events to attend, and presentations to give. It is that must-do driver connected to work, and it often flows into planning a fun evening out or that soccer practice game with your children. 

It is all connected, in one way or the other to how we define productivity.

If an agenda can organize your productive tasks, why aren’t we using it for non-productive tasks as well? Because non-productivity is also productivity. 20 Minutes of relaxation, a 15-minute stretch between tasks. Or just 5 minutes of conscious breathing before that key meeting reminder pops up; in 5 minutes from now, you’re up!

Have you ever considered including a NOT to-do list as well in addition to a to-do one? What we write down, our brain interprets it as a higher priority than when we leave it aside. Don’t check your socials between this and this hour. Avoid browsing through your emails when dinner is served.

We all have those moments. If we do not write things down, we often forget them. 

There is a time and a place for everything. If the principle of not jotting it down works just as well for matters we must do, why should it not work when you plan some time to recharge for more “productive” times?

Make time for non-productive moments. Plan ahead and reap the benefits of scheduling a couple of minutes here and there to thinkatate, let your mind wander freely (and the great ideas you often see floating above the surface). 

And leave some space free to be flexible. A packed-to-capacity agenda may look cool but is hardly a productive one.

Focus on being productive instead of busy.| Tim Ferriss
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