Some time ago, a book was released called “The 3 Pillars of Personal Effectiveness.”
The book aimed to give people who struggle with managing their workload or even day-to-day life, a way to better deal with these issues.
Since then, a variety of other texts have been released describing the pillars of personal effectiveness and it seems that putting these issues into “pillars” or bastions or even foundations is a great way of working out how to be more effective at work and at home.
It allows people to figure out ways of better managing their busy lifestyles, thereby becoming more effective and productive. Let’s take a look at the pillars and what they mean.
Pillar 1 – Building an Understanding of Personal Effectiveness
There is no definition set in stone of what personal effectiveness actually is. Hence, the first pillar needs to define what you believe personal effectiveness to be. This can be in terms of your personal career, your family home, how you influence people, and so on.
“People who are personally effective make good use of their skills. They don’t squander them. They use them to achieve their goals and do so in a way that is efficient and cost effective.”
Personal Effectiveness by Mitch McCrimmon, Ph.D.
Pillar 2 – Focus
Just as described in the original book on personal effectiveness, the second pillar has to be focus.
“Learn to see focused time as the success criteria.” The 3 Pillars of Personal Effectiveness by Troels Richter
Focusing on what you do and when you do it is a surefire way of becoming far more effective in everything that you do. It is about no longer being interrupted either by your own thoughts or by intrusions of others and about stopping to procrastinate, something we are all guilty of.
Pillar 3 – Planning and Prioritizing
Now that you know what it means, to you, to be personally effective and how you can focus on the task at hand, you need to determine what the task at hand actually is. This means you have to plan and prioritize your day before you face it.
“Mastering personal effectiveness necessitates that you commit ahead of time to consistently step back from your work to plan and prioritize, even when you don’t feel like you have time. If you want to master personal effectiveness you must accept that you will not and cannot physically do everything you want to do or everything that others expect of you: choices must be made.” 5 Pillars of Personal Effectiveness – Yahoo Lifestyle
Those who are good at effective time management suggest everybody takes out half an hour at the start of their day to prioritize what they will be doing during the day. The idea of a “to do list” has long gone out of the window, because this list simply starts to get endless and we tend to forget the things we wrote down first, working instead on the newer ones that seem to have bigger deadlines.
Personal effectiveness, above all, is about understanding that there are only 24 hours in one day and that you cannot do anything to change that. Out of that day, you have to have some time for yourself, as well as time to rest and recuperate.
It was once explained as having three cups: work, social and personal, and 24 Smarties. It is up to you to decide how many Smarties go in each cup, with each Smartie representing one hour of the day. This is a great way to visualize just how little time you have, and to prioritize on what is and isn’t important to you. You can further divide the Smarties on your day as well, but you should never start to take Smarties out of the cups and start to regroup them in a different way.