I flip through the stack of papers on the left side of my desk…find the receipt I need…relocate it to the right side of my desk (with the other finance-related docs).
I reach for the book again.
The stack of papers on the left side of my desk catches my eye again. The envelope with the letter needing a response is now on top. I pick it up and re-read the request. I need to respond.
I reach for the book. I could move a few outdated paperbacks and make room for it.
Not now. Too many other pressing matters to do.
I pick up the receipt to document my travel expenses. I set it down so I can retrieve the file with the other receipts…
Really. This is how it goes sometimes!!
Please know… I am not a neurotic person. However, that glimpse into my life does not support such a claim! Exactly HOW many times did I touch the book…and the receipt…??
Talking with others, I’ve found that this is actually a shared experience.
Think about it: if I had shelved the book the first time I touched it, I could have gained all the minutes I was distracted finding new desktop real estate for it.
So…want to find “extra” time? Touch everything only once!
With the discipline to file or shelve or shred as you put your hands on something, you will ultimately gain time in each day. You are investing in your future time bank as you act on the needs of the present.
Try it for just ONE hour: Touch everything only once.
For every paper, book, or bowl that ends up in your hands, decide among four actions:
store it, delegate it, toss it, or give it away.
Don’t pick it up if you are not going to do something about it. Don’t be distracted by it until you complete your present task. THEN touch it!
So…when the snail mail crawls in: Open. Then file, scan or throw it away. (You need a filing system already in place, of course. If you don’t, umm, that will have to be another post!)
Feeling BOLD? Go for an entire day of touching everything only once!
It’s simply transformational!