In his book The 10 Natural Laws of Successful Life and Time Management, author Hyrum Smith introduces the personal productivity pyramid – a tool for making sure that our daily to-do lists are clear reflections of our governing values and long-range goals.
1. Governing Values
At the base of the pyramid are our governing values – those things we choose to govern or guide our lives by. Here are some questions to help you identify and clarify yours:
· What inspires you?
· What makes your life worth living?
· What would you miss most if you were to lose it?
If there was a one foot wide metal girder placed across the expanse of the grand canyon, what would be important enough for you to venture out across it?
2. Long-Range Goals
In light of your highest and most deeply held values, what do you want for your life? What do you want for you? Choose at least one long -range goal that relates to each of the governing values you identified in step one.
3. Medium-Range Goals
Given each one of your goals, what are some projects for you to focus on over the next 90 days? Over the next month? How about this week?
4. Daily Tasks
Finally, what’s the very next step? What do you need to do today to begin/continue reaching your medium-range goals, moving towards your long-range goals, and fulfilling your highest values?
If you haven’t already, fill in your own personal productivity pyramid. Go through each of the questions above and answer them to the best of your ability. If you’re concerned about how long this might take, begin with your governing values. When you get really clear on what matters most to you, you’ll know whether or not to take the time to complete today’s experiment!
Have fun, learn heaps, and get the stuff that matters most to you done!