The 80/20 rule
In 1906, Italian engineer Vilfredo Pareto noticed that about 20% of the citizens of his home country of Italy held about 80% of the wealth of the entire country. The principle that 20% of causes lead to 80% of the outcomes has spread to all areas of life and became known as the 80/20 rule or Pareto principle.
Applications of the 80/20 rule
Applied to time management, 80/20 rule means that about 20% of the tasks that you perform will lead to 80% of the results that you get.
You need to always be aware of your current situation
Effective time management is all about being aware of what you are doing and constantly asking yourself whether you are working on something essential, on the 20% that will lead to 80% of the results, or the non-essential, the 80% of things that result only in 20% of the outcomes.
Top tasks need to support your goals
Your goal should be to identify and isolate the tasks that will help you accomplish your goals. Then, create routines and systems that allow you to complete these tasks without interruptions and distractions.
Effective time management is based on constant prioritization
Once you create a list of your goals and a list of your tasks, you need to prioritize them so that you can focus on the things with most value. For example, if your long-term goal is to send your children to an Ivy League school, you may choose to spend your time working somewhere instead of being a stay-at-home parent.
Finding out where to focus your energy is vital
If you apply the 80/20 rule effectively, it will help you become more productive at work and at home. You will be able to establish and communicate your goals better, focus on money-making activities and manage people more productively.
80/20 also applies to your personal life
You always need to remember that the 80/20 rule applies not just to business and work, but also to other areas of life, including your family and your personal life. You can use the rule to create lists of your personal goals and priorities and categorize your life at home, too.
You can balance household duties and hobbies
To get the most of your personal time, figure out how you can align your time doing chores with your hobbies. For example, if you enjoy entertaining guests in your backyard, then you can afford to spend time on gardening and mowing. If you like to spend your free time traveling, focus your time on budgeting and planning, not gardening.
Everything should revolve about your master list
Before you begin your day, write down what you want to accomplish by the end of the day. The goal is not to think about what you need to do, but have lists of goals and tasks so that you can focus your energy and mind power on doing and not thinking about to-dos.
Tasks need to have priorities
Once you have lists of goals and things to do, determine what goes on the A-list, B-list, and C-list. Ask yourself about what you need to do to get the most out of your time and delegate the things that are unimportant.