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Beginning Balance

Sep 22, 2023

Mark explains his unique system for managing his day to day tasks after years of struggling with ADHD. For Mark, it's all about managing his energy and honoring his mindset in the current moment. If the "dirt pile" calls (his affectionate name for an ongoing earthmoving project in his backyard), then that's what he does, whether or not it's the "best" or most important use of his time in the moment. Over the years, Mark has learned that allowing himself space to indulge in physical tasks often has the benefit of settling his mind and, therefore, putting him in a good headspace to tackle bigger, more stressful business challenges. For Mark, productvitiy follows his headspace.


Jesse, on the other hand, has a very different style for getting things done. Jesse is a man of systems, and he's also a man with a long to-do list. He mentions how in the past he has been called out for letting tasks slip or needing reminders to follow up on things. So for Jesse the priority is making sure that tasks don't live in his head, but are organized in a good system. He likes David Allen's Getting Things Done (GTD) productivity system, which asks a person to first organize and sort through their list of tasks before tackling them. With a good categorization of tasks in place, it becomes easier to execute tasks at the time and place when you can do them, rather than relying on your mind's own reminder system which often reminds you when you can't do anything about the task! Jesse adds a weekly review to his process, to make sure he's working on things that matter -- in business and personal life -- and not avoiding challenging tasks by filing his day with low-level admin work.


The takeaway? People can get things done with very different approaches. One key to figuring out what will work for you is to recognize and honor who you are. As Mark's mentor says, you can't will yourself to be the kind of person who systematically categorizes and organizes tasks if that's who you are by nature. Once you accept that, then you can find the system that works for you.


Mark Butler, Virtual CFO

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