Working the smartest way to get things done.
For decades, leaders have equated commitment with long hours and working hard. At long last, more are recognizing that you can excel in your work and care about your workplace by working smart and not just hard.
To me working “smart” means being organized and efficient with focus on doing stuff which really matters; in the right priority.
To me working “hard” means putting in a lot of efforts and perhaps also many hours. Unless you also work “smart”, working "hard" could be caused by focusing on doing stuff "right" instead of doing the "right things". Or it could be caused by an unproductive method of working .
To me work- life balance starts by working “smart” and then decide for yourself (= plan) when you may need or wish also to work “hard”.
There is a lot of power in being effective and efficient and optimizing every action you take towards prioritizing important stuff - and deep diving in to those areas. That could be strategy or leadership at work, family activities or time for exercise.
When it comes to work- life balance, it boils down to using the time on stuff which really matters. “Time is more valuable than money. You can get more money but you can't get more time.”
My 3 overall suggestions on areas to take control, run your day and gain minimum 30 minutes daily are:
1. INBOX. a) Clean your inbox and keep it clean. b) Process emails and decide to either c) Delete, Dump (to a folder), Delegate, Do it now (less than 5 minutes) or Do It Later (task the email and prioritize it on your task list).
2. TASK LIST. a) Work with one task list. b) Create categories with colors and deadlines to maintain an overview. c) Use the same color categories in your calendar.
3. CALENDAR PRIORITIZATION. a) Create recurring daily "check-in" and "check-out" meetings to process emails. b) Reserve time in your calendar for a weekly planning meeting. c) Time prioritize your meetings, your tasks, your personal life and build in "slack" in your calendar for the unforeseen.