How to Make Time Out of Thin Air

Do you ever have things to do that just keep getting put off? If you’re like almost everyone else, I’m sure you’ve got a ton of them.

Important things…

Silly things…

Family things…

Business things…

Whatever these things are for you, there’s an incredibly easy way to make them happen much quicker than they would if you are left to your own devices. This method is so simple and obvious, you’ve probably already used it yourself under the right circumstances. In fact I’m using it right now!

You see, I’ve got only an hour before I get to go to a dinner party this evening. We’re eating at a nice Italian restaurant we celebrate things like birthdays and promotions at. I’m really looking forward to an enjoyable meal, with family and friends.

A little later tonight, my brother who’s visiting my parents in the bay area, is driving up to my place for the weekend. We’ll play scrabble, have a few drinks, and maybe shoot some pool at a nearby tavern. Hopefully we’ll go on a walk or two during the break in the snow. So, my weekend is going to pretty much be taken, starting in less than an hour.

Have you guessed how I’m making time for this post yet?

We’re all pretty funny, we humans. We’ll procrastinate, surf the net, get up from our desk to check some unimportant thing outside (or in the garage), watch TV, or otherwise occupy our time… while at the same time, we’ll complain about lack of time, and having too many things to do.

A strange thing happens however, when we have a firm deadline to get things done, or else. What happens is time just manifests out of thin air. We figure out ways to get things done quicker than we’d imagine. Earlier this week I promised myself to make a post here before the weekend, and I’m doing it, but just barely. All because I have a real deadline. I have some other things to take care of as well, and I’ll handle them once I’ve posted this (5 minutes).

So, set a deadline. Make it real. Some ideas:

  • Tell your significant other that you’ll have something to show them in an hour (or whatever aggressively realistic time frame you like).
  • Promise yourself to take care of at least one online business related item on your list before bed.
  • Post a note to the world on your blog that you’ll be releasing your new product or service on a specific date–then keep your promise for that date.
  • Chunk the larger things into small, easy to handle bites, and set your deadlines for each one.
  • Make a game out of it and use a timer to see how fast you can do something, or how many things you can do from your list in a set period of time.
  • Set appointments to do things away from home, and finish up your projects before you go.
  • Plan to go to the store just before closing, for something you really need to get, and make sure you take care of an item on your list before dashing out the door.

What works best for me is having to be somewhere at a certain time, and I can’t be late–like my current situation. What works for you? Can you think of any other ways which might work for you?

If you put this practice to work, just a little every day, you’ll soon be amazed at how much more you get done, and how little extra thought is required to do those seemingly “hard” goals.

On to my next item… What’s on your list that you’ll take care of before you go to bed? And tomorrow?

Do and succeed!

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