Identifying High Value Activities

A lot of us are busy. Sometimes we are so busy, we have no idea what we are doing that’s actually moving the needle and has value and what doesn’t. Rememer that the busier you are does not equate to you being more productive. If you work 80 hours a week, you many not be doing any better than 60 hours or less a week. If you just keeping yourself busy, I’m going to go out and say that you are probably not even being all that productive. While “busy” and “productive” are not antonyms, they are not necessary synonyms either. It is time to take a minute and reflect on how valuable the things your doing are. Here are just a few points to consider in doing so.

  1. Get all of your activities in one place. Whether you do this on paper, in an spreadsheet, or in an application, be sure to get everything you are doing in one place.
  2. Create a point system for each activity. Use whatever point system you want, I’d recommend 0 to 10.
  3. Multiply the amount of time of each activity by the point score. This could be based on your time budget at first. However, this should be based on your actual activity that you get from tracking your time. This could be down to every single thing you do or more broad to just a few main activities. Do what works best for you, and it is OK to change methods from time to time as well.
  4. Keep a running score for regular set of period. This can be done daily, weekly, or even monthly. Just remember that months are different lengths so multiply by number of days and get an average per day.
  5. Compare your score with your previous score. This can help encourage you to do the tasks that you determine the highest value by seeing a higher score as well. If you are the type of person that enjoys gamifying things, this is the ideal approach.

This is a great way to gauge how well you are spending your time. In addition to keeping a time budget and a detailed schedule, this can also help you gauge your time further. You can also assign points to your schedule or time budget and than compare your score to the actual. Please let me know if you have done anything like this before and what your thoughts on this are.