How I Get Work Done – TPW252
Published July 24, 2019
62 min
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    Sometimes when we're looking for ways to get work done, it helps to hear about tools and techniques that have been effective for other people. This week I'm sharing a bit about the tools, systems, and approaches I use to get work done.

    (Some of) The tools and systems I use to get work done

    Like you, I wear more than one hat. I have a full-time law practice, host a podcast, and work with coaching clients, as well as having a family I love and personal interests. Trying to get all these things done can be a challenge. I try to be as efficient as I can with respect to my work. I like hearing from others how they get their “stuff” done, so I thought I’d share some of the tools, systems, and routines I use to get my work done.

    Backdrop: If you’ve listened to the TPW podcast for a while, you know a couple of years ago I changed my law practice to a different firm and moved my office to my home. (Check out TPW154 - Working from Home to hear more about that).

    I like working from home for a lot of reasons. But because of where we live, I have a real problem getting reliable internet that’s fast enough for the things I need to do. So early this spring I decided to look for office space in the small town near where we live. It turned out to be much more affordable than I expected. I found an office in a building downtown, 10 minutes from home.

    I miss having the ability to toss a load of laundry into the washer or get dinner started early, but having fast, reliable internet has made a huge difference in my productivity during working hours.

    Universal systems & approaches

    Some of the approaches I use to get work done both for my law practice for TPW include:

    * Batching: Doing like tasks together so I only have to set up/clean up only once rather than multiple times
    * Block scheduling: Allocating chunks of time to specific tasks or types of tasks
    * Single-tasking: Focusing on one task at a time

    * Problems of multi-tasking:

    “Research conducted at Stanford University found that multitasking is less productive than doing a single thing at a time. The researchers also found that people who are regularly bombarded with several streams of electronic information cannot pay attention, recall information, or switch from one job to another as well as those who complete one task at a time. . . . Multitasking reduces your efficiency and performance because your brain can only focus on one thing at a time. When you try to do two things at once, your brain lacks the capacity to perform both tasks successfully.”

    The same study looked at people who feel they’re good at multitasking:

    “They found that heavy multitaskers—those who multitask a lot and feel that it boosts their performance—were actually worse at multitasking than those who like to do a single thing at a time. The frequent multitaskers performed worse because they had more trouble organizing their thoughts and filtering out irrelevant information, and they were slower at switching from one task to another.”
    Multitasking Damages Your Brain and Career, New Studies Suggest

    We discussed the detriments of multi-tasking in TPW111 - Time Thieves. Another article I suggest reading is "
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