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Compounding Time Doubling Achievement
by Carol de Giere
There ought to be a way to put time in a savings account and let it grow. Then we could afford the time to learn new programs for the Palmtop, keep up with the expanding knowledge in our field, or vacation more often with our family.
While there are no banks so far that offer time accounts, you can at least double your investment in the moments of your day by using a technique known as "time compounding."
Time compounding essentially means fulfilling two or more goals at the same time through purposeful activity. For example, if one of your goals is to pay more attention to your teenager, and you also wish to improve health through exercise, then you can compound time by exercising with your teenager.
In the computer world, when two programs are running at the same time, it's called multitasking and is usually beneficial. In the human world multitasking may be dangerous, as when you try to eat while driving. It may be counterproductive, such as distracting yourself with TV while trying to enjoy a calm meal with the family. However, fruitful time compounding is actually "goals compounding" rather than multitasking doubling up on achievement rather than dividing your attention.
ON THE PALMTOP
Compounding time breaks out of linear thought patterns and gets you into a bigger picture mode. There are several ways to accomplish this on the Palmtop.
You can create a custom Database to track your compoundable goals or activities. Create a new database and set up a text field for the goal or activities and some checkbox fields to list locations where you can accomplish this goal.
Locations might include: home, office, car, bus, while resting, while driving, meals, after meals, while waiting, etc.
If you keep your goals or ToDo list in this format, you can check it easily using the Database Subset feature. For example, if you realize you will be waiting somewhere, pull out your Database and select the "while waiting" Subset to remind yourself of what vertical reader books you want to read, or whatever you have there. If you need a break from one project, select your "while resting" Subset to decide what reading you can do while relaxing or audiotapes you want to listen to that will help you accomplish another goal.
NoteTaker or Memo Approach
Use NoteTaker or Memo to brainstorm a little. Make a list of things you'd love to do if you only had time. Then divide one or more into activities that will help you accomplish your pet dream. For example, let's say you write down the following:
"Learn to fly and then travel to exotic places, share my computer interests with my family, etc. "
You can then look at the first one and imagine that some of the places you fly to are in Central America and populated by Spanish speaking people. Your activities list might include: calling up the flying school at the local airport, buying flight simulator software to get the feel of flying, borrowing Spanish cassettes from the public library, locate Spanish vocabulary program, etc.
To compound time efficiently, compare these activities with your existing weekly ToDo list. Then generate a new set of compounded ToDo's. For example:
Create flashcards with Spanish vocabulary on the Palmtop and use them while waiting for appointments;
Invite an associate who is also a pilot to lunch to discuss business and hear him or her discuss experiences as a pilot.
Show my kids the new flight simulator program.
Make up a weekly schedule at the beginning of each week. Consult your compoundable goals Database or ToDo list, add in layers of activities, looking for other goals you can accomplish at the same time you are completing your normal duties. For example, you might enter 7:00 am commute to work (if using carpool or public transportation). Below it, at the same time you might enter "Listen to Spanish tapes." Indent the item in the Description field so it appears as a secondary activity under the primary one. It might look something like this:
7:00a Commute to work
7:00 Listen to Spanish tape
Palmtops and time
Ideally all your career time doubles as personal time because through your career you fulfill your life's mission. In any case, we all need time to expand our horizons outside of work. With the Palmtop as a central organizer we can more easily clarify for ourselves the kinds of activities that will be most fruitful. (For further discussion of Time Compounding see Time Management for Unmanageable People, by Ann McGee-Cooper with Duane Trammell, Bantam Book, 1993)
Copyright © 2010 Thaddeus Computing Inc