Getting Time On Your Side

07 Jul

Program Directors are always telling me that time management is an on-going challenge.

It’s no surprise that “Manage Self, Not Time” is one of the most viewed articles on this blog.

There are dozens of good time management systems, tons of books and plenty of software available.

It takes practice and discipline to use a time management system effectively.

There are so many demands placed on us today that often a combination of systems is needed.

Franklin Quest was the first system I encountered in 1993.

It was paper based and was great for tracking information and commitments. But, email and cellphones really didn’t exist then.

Advances in electronics and computing took our time pressure from zero to sixty in the blink of an eye.

The Franklin System generally helped me stay organized.

But in time something else was needed.

I tried Franklin software, Palm Pilots and a variety of add ons but nothing seemed to be one hundred percent effective. They only made my system more bulky.

Tony Robbins RPM or Rapid Planning Method offered a totally different approach.

Robbins is best known as motivational speaker whose style can be a little over the top for some.

The RPM system is his best work, at least in my opinion.

Instead of a hard core system using ‘to do’ lists, RPM teaches you a system of thinking. It’s very powerful when used consistently.

You begin by doing a ‘mind dump’ on paper of all your tasks, calls and commitments . This is followed by ‘chunking’ like items together and creating very specific outcome statements.

The idea is to get you very clear about what you want to accomplish. The more specific you make your outcome the better.

You then have a shorter list of manageable key outcomes. Often you’ll find the things on the ”to do’ list were unnecessary in getting your outcome.

The focus becomes getting real results.

Robbins recommends planning across a week and adjusting the plan daily.

RPM also features a very simple yet powerful way to handle project management.

RPM is a ten day course on CD offered through the website It’s not cheap, but worth the investment.

A paper planner is available but not really necessary.

I sometimes drift from following my system. When that happens, it’s time to review the CD and that gets me right back to the basics and feeling in control.

Whatever system you choose should be simple to follow, and help you keep track of important information.

Most of all your system should feel effortless.

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Posted by on July 7, 2008 in Time Management


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