So, I'm always looking for tools to help me be more productive.
Number one for me is to begin my day with a Quiet Time with God and the Bible, a living breathing dialog with the living God. I note a qualitative and quantitative difference between the days I madly rush into my work, on the one hand, and those when I take the time to seek God's truth for my day and lay my needs before Him, on the other.
Martin Luther once wrote, "I have so much to do that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer." I can't match the Reformer for time spent in prayer. But I do try to begin each day in fellowship with God.
In an article on TIME's motto site, Lisa M. Gerry gives three simple techniques for becoming productive each day. They obviously represent the distillation of lots of other wisdom you've probably seen before, particularly that of author Charles Duhigg who Gerry cites, but I love it. And, doing maybe unforgivable violence to the short piece, I'm going to distill it.
The three ways to be instantly more productive [with my comments in italics], Gerry says:
1. Ask yourself why you're doing something.Read the whole thing.
2. Think big picture. [We can't get lost in trivial distractions, even those that may be "good," that deter us from pursuing the overall purpose, whether it's as a parent raising a child, a CEO leading a company, or a pastor leading a congregation.]
3. Take control of one aspect of the situation--no matter how small. [How did the gnat eat the buffalo? One bite at a time.]
[Blogger Mark Daniels is the pastor of Living Water Lutheran Church, Centerville, Ohio.]