To be fulfilled at the end of a long day, you must have a sense of accomplishment. You must feel a sense of traction. John Maxwell says, "A budget is telling your money where to go instead of wondering where it went." In order to have a fulfilling day with a sense of traction, we should treat our time the same way. We determine what we will do with our time, not wonder where it went. Dave Ramsey refers to making the most of time management and organization as "Flavoring your day with steak sauce." Here are a few thoughts on adding to the flavor:
1) Plan your day around the pursuit of your written goals that flow from your mission statement, born of your vision for living your dreams. This will keep you energized and enthusiastic.
2) Plan time for what Stephen Covey call quadrant 2, which is the important but not urgent things. These are things like exercise, prayer, reading, goal setting, date night etc. If we don't plan for the non-urgent, the daily whirlwind will keep us forever distracted, running from fire to fire. A well planned EMSR (early morning success routine) is the best time for Q2 activities.
3) Create a prioritized to do list each day. You can categorize them such as "A" for things that have to be done today and "B" for the less time sensitive items. Once every item has a class (A or B), then prioritize as A1, A2 which tells you the priority as you work through them.
4) Utilize technology to make things more efficient but avoid the distractions. A paperless calendar and to do list on your phone can be great tools, but reacting to every email or Facebook post can be distracting.
5) Keep your work environment clean and organized. In many cases your desktop represents the organization of your mind.
In the early 1950's, a consultant told Charles Schwab that he wanted to give him the most productive advice that he would ever receive. The advice was simple, "At the beginning of each day, write down and prioritize your top 5 things and don't work on anything else until they are complete." At the end of 30 days, he had implemented this throughout his entire organization and wrote the man a check for $30,000. Flavor your day with steak sauce and determine what you will do with each day.