There are many ways to find clarity in a hectic world. Build a time machine, travel back to 2009, buy loads of Bitcoin, and then chill the f out afterward.😎
But for us mere mortals, there are also effective mental models for organizing life:
Meet the Eisenhower Matrix.
The Eisenhower Matrix is a time management matrix created by US President Dwight D. Eisenhower that divides tasks into four quadrants based on urgency and importance.
Also meet Eisenhower in the Matrix:
He will help you decide which type of action is required for your task. Pretty neat from him, right?
🔥 Important and urgent task:
My house is on fire; I should call the fire department. Tasks you should do immediately instead of posting on Social Media about it.
Just do it.
🗓 Important, but not urgent tasks:
I think most of the tasks fall in this category. For example: buy an anniversary gift for your partner, because they care about it even though they say they don’t.
You don’t need to do it now, so pick a time when to do it. If you postpone it 10 minutes before the anniversary, it becomes so important and urgent that you better buy that gift first before calling the fire department to save your house. Just saying.
👤 Urgent, but not important task:
There are minor things that need your attention right now, like telling your kids to get out of the swimming pool because they’ve been inside for hours. Is it important? Not really.
But if you don’t have the urgency to get them out, then you’ll end up with raising raisins. Eisenhower said that you should delegate these tasks, so if you’re fortunate enough to do so:
let someone else handle this.
🗑 Not urgent, not important task:
The advice here: no need to take care of it; it is just clutter. I can’t even think of such a task besides liking the latest Gary V post. Just don’t do it. Seriously.
Write everything you have in your mind down.
Put each of your tasks into a quadrant.
Check tasks off when done.
Enjoy the silence.
We even created a workable PDF for you to make your life easier, you can go old-school and print it out in full color or use it in a digital format: