Sunday, May 08, 2011

Check mail only twice a day?!

Great article on ways to become more productive. Collide Magazine did this article. I love their stuff!

This Tim Ferris guy is great at getting his ideas out and has some thought-provoking ideas. I want to learn how to become more productive so I'm reading about this kind of thing regularly. Perhaps this will help you too. -Darien

  • Check mail only twice a day, at set times. Tim Ferris, the guy who wrote The 4-hour Work Week, encourages setting times during the day that you check and respond to emails. This allows you to tackle the messages all at once as opposed to being interrupted all day with various emails that may or may not be important. Set a schedule and abide by it — this creates efficiency and margin in your work day.
  • Put the TV out of sight. Skye Jethani once told me his family philosophy on television is to, “have it outside the life-flow of the house.” This is a practical and useful strategy, as it’s no longer a peripheral distraction as you walk from your kitchen through the living room to the bedroom. Personally, my TV is in the basement “entertainment room,” and it’s true — out of sight is out of mind. This can be especially useful when kids come in the picture, as the TV can become a binky for the brain.
  • Phone fast. Go outside once in a while without your phone, I know this seems unreasonable, but I believe it is important to find time free from the possibility of distraction, as I have found possibility always means inevitability when it comes to technology.
  • Intentional time with God. My pastor was telling me about Eugene Peterson, the author and pastor, who every week takes a 3-hour walk with his wife in complete silence! Afterward, they sit and discuss their thoughts and what (if anything) they heard from God. This is an unconfirmed report on Eugene Peterson’s life, but true or not seems to be a great way to be intentional with your life partner and God.
  • Begin your day social media-free. Don’t check your email, Facebook, Twitter, or other social media outlets until after breakfast. This one is difficult for me, but seems to be the most beneficial, as it gives me time to sit, eat, and read the Bible before jumping in the furious interaction found within the Internets.
The fact of the matter is, finding margin in your life is ultimately up to you and it is rooted in discipline and intentionality.
I want to hear from you — what other ways can we unplug and create margin?