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THE JOURNAL

Mimi & Alex Ikonn - The Art of Smart Planning (Part II)

In this second part of “The Art of Smart Planning”, Mimi and Alex Ikonn explain why it’s important to prioritize your goals, how to stay organized, and why you need rocks to create and realize your vision.

 

So how do you go about working out which of your goals to prioritize? “We asked ourselves the same question and were inspired to implement “rocks” to achieve impressive growth after reading Traction by Gino Wickman”, shares Alex when reflecting on the creation process of the Quarterly Productivity Planner. Wickman advocates the Entrepreneurial Operating System®, a system he developed to help individuals and companies function in a more cohesive and focused way to aid business growth and help achieve a better life balance. When you have a clear vision for what you want to achieve in a quarter or a year, identify your “rocks” –– milestones you’ll need to meet to get you there. These are the three to seven goals that are the most important for your vision to become a reality. 

 

 

SELECT YOUR ROCKS

 

Aiming high and being ambitious is a positive attribute, but in order to realize your vision it’s important to ensure that your rocks are smart and manageable. Likewise, aiming too low may hinder your chances of achieving your annual goals. “When selecting your rocks, consider if each one has an 80 percent chance of succeeding. If your prediction is below 80 percent, the rock may be too tricky to tackle and you’ll need more time for this. If it’s above 80 percent, you may be selling yourself short”, Alex continues. Aim for your rocks to be challenging but achievable, and you’ll be well on your way to a successful quarter––and life.

 

 

Time is our most valuable resource. Just like money, the more we keep an eye on it, the more awareness we gain about the patterns that underlie success

SMART DAILY PLANNING

 

Behavioral economists have talked at length about “ego-depletion,” which basically means that human beings have a limited amount of decision-making ability each day. This is why the Productivity Planner was designed with the built-in prioritization framework. By focusing on the most important task of the day first, before you start getting distracted with emails, will help you concentrate all your mental energy in an effective, streamlined fashion. Every day.

 

“We’ve previously based the Productivity Planner on the Pomodoro Technique, but felt that re-starting the timer after a distraction was a bit harsh. We created Focus Time to have the flexibility to pause the timer when those unavoidable distractions occur, deal with the issue, then re-start the timer and re-focus on the chosen task”, Alex adds. Breaking the day up in time blocks allows you to focus your energy on specific tasks to really give them your all. Time is our most valuable resource. Just like money, the more we keep an eye on it, the more awareness we gain about the patterns that underlie success.

 

 

“Create rituals for yourself that provide you with a grounding sense of peace and calmness” – Mimi Ikonn
Mimi Ikonn takes some time out to break the tension
— Mimi Ikonn takes some time out to break the tension

SHIFTING FROM WORK-LIFE TO LIFE-WORK BALANCE

 

“Block time for yourself and put it on your calendar or to-do list. Review your daily habits and create rituals for yourself that provide you with a grounding sense of peace and calmness”, Mimi Ikonn advises. It may be listening to an audio book, being close to nature, going for insightful walks and letting your mind wander. Or simply going out for breakfast with your partner, having a quiet moment while enjoying your favorite tea, or doing some breathing exercises.

 

“Regardless of what you do, the point is to have fun”, Mimi admits when talking about her values. Having fun is one of the greatest gifts you can give to yourself. Take some time to be playful, laugh, dance, engage in light-hearted pleasures, immerse yourself in creative activities, and enjoy the process—this helps you break the tension, which positively affects your well-being and productivity.


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