Thursday, October 4, 2012

Introduction to the Time Matrix

Last week I had a reminder about some time management items, and I got to thinking about them.  I remembered about the Time Matrix.

You remember math and plotting and quadrants and all?  Well believe it or not there is a Time Matrix as well.  Steven Covey talked about it in his book 7 habits of highly successful people.  If you get a chance read that book, it has a lot in it...

So on the horizontal axis we have things that are urgent, and not urgent.  A phone ringing is urgent, must be answered like, now.  Not urgent is reading a novel.  The book just sits there until it is picked up and opened.

The vertical axis are Important and Not important.  So it looks something like this

There are four quadrants.  Important/Urgent = Quadrant I  A very stressful place to be.  Things have to be done right now!

Urgent/Not Important = Quadrant III.  These things interrupt your routine, your well laid plans. How you view things, some of them could become quadrant I issues, but if they are not important they eat up your allocated time to complete something else.

Not Urgent/Not Important = Quadrant IV.  Things that are good, we all need down time, but if we do too much of them we find ourselves wasting time, and our productivity goes way down and we find ourselves not getting anything done we would like to.  However we are having a great time until things fall into Quadrant I and we are back to getting stressed.

Not Urgent/ Important = Quadrant II.  This is the important place, this is where things get done, relationships are built, where things that matter happen.  Time spent here makes our lives rich and fulfilling. However, because these things are not Urgent they can be done later.  A lot of my blogs have been on motivation and relationships and things that matter.  I believe working and living in Quadrant II is important.  I find that the demands on my time pull me into quadrant I and stress more often than I would like.  Over the next several weeks I plan on exploring each of these quadrants and give my own personal input from my own life experiences.

Again Steven Covey's book covers these in great detail.  I just use this as a resource.  I want to be sure I give credit where credit is due.

So draw your quadrants out and list the things in your life that fits in each of those quadrants. Ask yourself where you spend most of your time?  Where do you want to be?  How will you get there?  Oh, yes, that is a Quadrant II activity, isn't it?

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