Too Many Balls in the Air? Learn How to Perfect the Juggling Act

Use this simple methodology to help you identify and focus on what's most important

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Inevitably no matter how much we try to manage our tasks and our time, we end up having more to do than is humanly possible. Many of us relate to this imbalance as performing a never-ending juggling act. The goal is to keep all of the balls moving in the air without letting any of them fall on the floor.

In real life, no matter how good we are at juggling the many tasks on our plate, sometimes balls will drop. We must accept that this is just part of the game and not see that as failure. More importantly, we should take inventory of the balls we are juggling, categorize them and then play the game accordingly.

There are three balls in the game of life: glass balls, plastic balls and rubber balls. The key to success is to understand which category the things that you are juggling fall into. Sometimes this can be more challenging than the juggling act itself.

GLASS BALLS

Glass balls will break and shatter if they fall. These are the things that need your immediate and focused attention. They are the things that are most important, cannot be delayed or delegated and will have a negative impact if dropped.

PLASTIC BALLS

These balls will fall but will not break. They will lay on the ground and roll around until they can be picked back up again. These things can wait and be attended to at a more convenient time or date. These things don’t need immediate attention and can be picked back up later.

RUBBER BALLS

When dropped, rubber balls will continue to bounce around for some time by themselves. They have enough energy to keep going by themselves for a little while. There’s no immediate or negative impact from letting rubber balls drop every now and then. They can easily be picked back up when time permits.

So, the successful juggling act dictates that you never drop a glass ball. The glass balls should command all of your focus and attention. If you need to drop a ball, try to drop a rubber ball. It will keep going for some time allowing you to pick it back up later. And, if you drop a plastic ball, no permanent damage will be done.

TRY THIS OUT: How many balls are you juggling right now? Can you categorize them into glass, plastic and rubber balls? What can you to do make sure you don’t drop any glass balls? If necessary which rubber balls can you let drop?

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Monisha Longacre
After 25 years in the corporate world, working at Lotus Development, Ernst & Young, The Weather Channel and Play On! Sports, Monisha Longacre founded her own company, Productivity 101 and created a new mobile app called priorigami™: the art of productivity.As our lives have become so much more hectic, demanding and complex, we strive to be more organized and productive but struggle with how to get everything done efficiently. Her mission is to provide simple, actionable and easy-to-use tools to help busy adults track, prioritize and complete tasks, to become more productive and spend more time doing the things that really matter in life.priorigami was designed to be the “Fitbit” for productivity and is based on the methodology that she developed juggling work, home and family responsibilities. Read and follow her blog at www.priorigami.com for weekly tips and tricks you can use everyday to get more done more efficiently.Download priorigami for FREE from the iTunes App Store.