Accomplishing More with Less Time
We have all experienced those days
which were full to the
brim and at the same time we have
experienced days when a few
time consuming tasks have taken up all
Why is it that on
some days we can do so much while on
other days we seem to do
practically nothing though we were busy
the whole day?
In order to provide an answer to this
question, I would like
to give you a small illustration.
Imagine your have a large bucket. Try
putting some rocks into the bucket. When I say
rocks I mean something
the size of medium sized cabbages. The
most you can put into the
bucket would be three or four. The
bucket is full isn’t it? It is full of
rocks. But does that
mean that it is really full.
some stones probably the size
of table tennis balls and see whether
there is room for a couple of
the in the bucket. Definitely four or five
of the stones can slip in to
the spaces between the rocks. Is the
bucket full now? Yes it is full of
rocks and stones.
Now, see if you can get
some glass marbles or beads. Slide them
into the bucket. You don’t
have to try too hard; they will find
their own paths.
If you think that the bucket is full now?
till you get some sand and pour it into
the bucket. You will be amazed
at the speed with which it trickles in. We are not done yet. You
are not going to believe this but the
bucket will actually accommodate
Try pouring a glass of
water into it and you will
find the water disappearing into the
depths of the bucket. Now your bucket is
The purpose of this experiment was to
show you that what
you thought to be full could in fact
accommodate much more, but
of a different kind of course.
This is exactly what happens to most of
us on most of our
days. We take on big tasks. That’s well
and good. But we get so
occupied with these huge tasks,
which may take more than a
day to get over with anyway, that we
tend to forget those smaller
tasks which may be just as important.
This is where we can
understand the importance of
prioritizing. The big things are
important, but the small things have to
get done too.
While you are trying to handle those
rocks, do not forget
those stones, marbles, and grains of
sand and drops of water.
- Things like saying good
morning and greeting others generally
are very important. These things I would
compare to the water.
- Telephone calls
(remember to be brief) I would liken to
the sand. They keep coming all the time.
- Responding to emails and
paying bills can be compared to the marbles.
- Meetings and
discussions are the stones.
projects and things like
audits and presentations are the rocks.
- There should be time for everything and
have it’s time.
A final word on accomplishments.
Please discard the
myth of perfection. It does not exist in
this world. Nothing, and I
mean nothing, is perfect. So stop trying
to make it that way.. As long
as it is presentable you
don’t have to lose sweat about a project
that you have done. But
that does not mean that your work should
be shabby. Make it as
presentable as is possible within the
time frame allotted.
Learn to manage your time.