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I have previously brought up what you must ask yourself to find your drive. That is the easy part. The hard part is how to keep your drive. Keeping your drive requires time management, a skill few people have.
Dedicate Time For What Drives You
You probably have a very busy schedule, it is hard to find time to spend on what drives you. The key to spending time on what drives you is to re-prioritize your schedule using time management. This is best illustrated by Steve Covey’s time management matrix. Read The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People for the original material. The matrix is illustrated below.
It does not matter what is all in your schedule, every minute could be put in one of these 4 quadrants.
I – Urgent and important. These include crises and deadlines. These are things that are absolutely essential including medical treatments for injuries, and paying your bills.
II – Not urgent and important. These include preparations, and development. More importantly this should include what drives you. These are important, at least to you, but there is little if any urgency in completing them.
III – Urgent and not important. We all know perfect examples of these including random phone calls or other forms of contact. It is difficult to compartmentalize the difference between important and urgent. I find it best to compartmentalize by simply asking “is this important to me or just someone else?” For example, you may have heard that a celebrity is having issues. Unless that celebrity is your friend, it is not important to you.
IV – Not urgent and not important. You have probably put the fewest items in this quadrant. After all, why would you spend precious time on something not urgent nor important? Trust me, you do. Even I do. I wrote about opportunity cost, it is actually one of my favorite posts. It is even a popular subject among people who write about personal finance. It would not be if it was easy to utilize time for things that are important. These include watching excessive TV, and playing excessive video games, or excessive use of social media. The key word is excessive, I will get into that soon.
Focus More On Quadrant II
You should focus more on what is important and not urgent to keep your drive. This includes working more on development, and preparation. By doing so, the time management quadrant will look more like this.
If you notice, by working more on what is important and not urgent the third quadrant will decrease significantly. You will have fewer distractions and time management will be easier.
Urgent Matters May Appear Less Urgent
If you notice the first quadrant changed, but it did not decrease by much. You will always have crises and deadlines to worry about and working on what is important should not change the deadlines, but they will make working towards those deadlines seem less urgent. Think about it, when was the last time you felt very urgent about something you prepared for? It’s harder to think about. That’s not because the matter was not urgent, but you may not remember panicking too much about it. If you do not have strong emotions towards something, it is hard to remember it.
Consider the idea of losing your job or business (if that has not happened already). That event short of mental or physical emergencies or the death of a loved one may be the most urgent moment of your life. There’s no way to sugarcoat that. But there are ways to keep it from getting sour. Even a small amount in savings will ease you during that urgent matter. If you save, you are doing something important, but not urgent. But by preparing, replacing your main source of income becomes less of an urgent matter. It is easier to focus your efforts to develop a new source of main income if you know that you do not need it immediately. The urgent and important suddenly seem less urgent.
You Will Waste Less Time
Now the fourth quadrant changes in a very similar manner to the first. Truth is most of the things we consider time wasters still require time. 4 hours in front of the TV is 4 hours not doing something else. However, that does not mean that the TV will deplete your drive, in fact depending on how you use it, it can help you keep your drive.
Media Can Be Very Helpful And Controlled
Media is simply a means of mass communication. TV may be media, but so are literary books, scientific journals, and Forge Your Wealth is especially media. Media is a word said with such spite, but it is one of, if not the best way to spread information and ideas. Media contains information on curing diseases or ideas of how to solve famines. Unfortunately, it is poisoned with misinformation and horrible ideas. That is why media is viewed very negatively.
I dare say that most media can actually help you grow. You just need to make sure to purge media that is toxic and that you prepare them the correct way. When you go online try to block out anything distracting. Certain search engine tricks will help make sure that few distractions come up when you block certain items. Subscribing to media channels that you find beneficial will help to block out everything you find toxic. For instance, subscribing to Forge Your Wealth will tell every search engine that you prefer sites that focus on personal finance. This is not done by me, but by algorithms from search engines. Search engines want you to stay online, to do so, it tries to give you what they believe you want. If you subscribe to media channels that provide you information on what helps you keep your drive, media will continue to show you new items and channels that will further help you.
Relaxation Can Help You Keep Your Drive
I have previously pointed out that recreation is very important. It helps you mentally by managing stress and helping you collect your thoughts. Recreation is only a waste of time if it is excessive.
One of the best steps to keep your drive is to turn what drives you into a source of income. I will write a post explaining how to make drives you into income.
If you want to keep your drive, you must focus more on what is important, but not necessarily urgent by using time management. There are two problems with this. The first is that it is hard for people to know the difference between important and urgent. The simplest way to determine this is by determining which you are doing for the future and which you are doing for the present. Everything being done for the present is urgent and those being done for the future is important. That is not to say you should not take care of what is urgent and important, but if you take care of what is important today, it will not be as urgent tomorrow.
The second thing that makes focusing on what is important difficult is the distractions that will steal your focus. While you can minimize what is urgent, urgent matters will never disappear entirely. However, similar to any potentially dangerous situation with more than one danger, you cannot focus only on one thing. You must take on the most urgent danger quickly, but be able to quickly transition between those dangers. Furthermore, you can utilize your recreation in order to keep your drive and even turn your drive into income. I will bring this up in a future post.
Maintaining focus on what is important, even in situations where it is not urgent is the key to maintaining your drive. Drive is either growing or receding. Work more towards development to keep your drive and to forge your wealth.