Busy much? When life gets busy (which is always), little to-dos tend to pile up on your task list. Change out the bathroom light bulb. Sort through the mail. Read that brochure on your health insurance plan, hang up that new piece of artwork, and reply to that email from an old friend. Find a local plumber and order a bag of diet dog food for your piggy little pup.
None of these tasks take very long to accomplish, which is exactly why most people procrastinate when it comes to getting them done. It only takes a couple of minutes to change out a lightbulb at most – so why do it right now? You know that you could squeeze that task in anytime – but you don’t.
Little to-dos linger and stack up on your task list, creating mental clutter that can cause stress. All these tiny things to do can add up to a feeling of being overwhelmed. But you can take a big bite out of your list by implementing the Hour of Power.
What is the Hour of Power?
Do you have a towering task list that’s filled with a million things to do? Set a timer and give yourself exactly 60 minutes to cross off as many things as you can. Use a colorful marker to mark items off and crank up some tunes. Make it a game and when you win, give yourself a reward. Decide on an incentive that excites you and that will increase as you accomplish more and more.
For example, reward yourself by putting $1 for every task that you finish to your savings account for your next vacation, clothes shopping fund, or book buying budget. Or award yourself with 5 minutes per task of no-guilt time to enjoy a guilty pleasure, like Facebook surfing, reality TV, or simply doing nothing. Establish the prize at the finish line and then get ready, set…and GO!
Why the Hour of Power Works
Starting a timer and setting a worthy incentive will help you stay focused as you slash through your task list. Distractions can wait – you’re earning bucks for your trip to Paris. You’ll catch yourself jogging around your house, zipping from one task to the next. If you don’t, then your incentive isn’t good enough. Bump it up.
Along the way, you’ll probably think of other tasks that you’ve been meaning to do but never wrote down. Add them to your list, cross them off, and keep going! When 60 minutes is over, count up your conquered to-dos and immediately give yourself the reward. You’ll feel a surge of accomplishment as you realize how much you’ve done in just one hour, including all those lingering tasks that you’ve been avoiding for months.
Does sixty minutes feel like too much? Opt for the Half Hour of Power, or even the Quarter Hour of Power! Some things should never be rushed (like mascara). But some things just need to get done. Simply set a timer and give yourself an incentive that increases with every task you finish – and you will turn your to-do list into a game.
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