How to Complete Those Essential Tasks


What activities do you feel you need to accomplish each day?

I thought I knew what they were for me. Then, about a week ago, I went home feeling uneasy and stressed. I reflected on what happened during the day and what didn’t get done that was causing me to feel this way.

That day I had to readjust my schedule of To-Do’s because a few student-athlete meetings lasted longer than planned (remember that I am a College Soccer Coach). When I got home, I took out my Green Time Management Planner and looked back over my day. I finished the majority of tasks on my to-do list, but there were still one or two things that were pushed aside. Reflecting back on my day helped give me figure out why I was stressed, but I needed to look into it more closely.

The next day was just as crazy as the day before. However, I went home feeling ok with what I accomplished. Did I get everything done on my To-Do list? No. But I did get a few of the things done that I hadn’t gotten done the day before. I again sat down and looked at what had gotten finished and what didn’t during the day. 

For the next few days, I paid close attention to what I accomplished and what I did not, and how I felt about both.

What I found is that for me, I feel good about leaving the office I send my recruiting emails out and have a chance to plan and prepare practice for the following day. 

The development and future success of my program is obviously dependant on my ability to consistently communicate with recruits. The success of my current team depends on preparing and executing challenging practices so we can continue to improve. When I make sure to finish these two tasks before I leave for the day, I feel assured knowing that I still have time to review my practice plan the night before and make adjustments if necessary. And, as a result, I walk into practice feeling more prepared. I also love the feeling of accomplishment I get when I know that I have taken another step forward with the recruits we are trying to get.

To avoid feeling stressed out, it took three or four days of analyzing what I did and didn’t do as well as assessing the feelings that followed for it to really hit home with me which tasks absolutely had to be done before I left the office. I now try to do my most important activities first thing in the morning when I get done with practice (we practice from 6-8am). I find that if I put them off until later, I get busy and run out of time to do them. 

So, what are your most important activities? What are your essential tasks for each day.

If you are not sure, do what I did.  At the end of the day, review your to-do list and see what got done and what didn’t get done. How do you feel when you get home? Once you have your data, analyze what causes you to feel this way. Then try to restructure your day to make sure you are getting your most important tasks done. 

Have a great and productive day!

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Mandy Green is a mother of two and has coached soccer at the collegiate and youth levels for 16 years. She is the creator of Coaching Productivity Strategies and author of The Green Time Management Workbook and Planner for Coaches. Mandy helps coaches prioritize and organize their tasks so they can get more work done in less time.

Release Date: Apr 27 2015


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