January '23

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2 0 G R A P H I C S P R O • J A N U A R Y 2 0 2 3 G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M S I G N A G E & P R I N T I N G T H E R I S I N G T I D E O F B U S I N E S S | A A R O N M O N T G O M E R Y From Frantic to Strategic Regain control of your most precious resource A re you busy? Do you feel overwhelmed? Are you coming out of the busy holiday season and wondering how you will be able to go through that again? Maybe you are looking to grow, but you don't know how you are going to do that. In this month's column, I want to share my thoughts about going from frantic to strategic, so you can get your time and sanity back. I don't know anyone who is not "busy." In fact, it is the modern-day badge of honor. We all have many roles and responsi- bilities and running or working in our business is just one of those roles. We all feel very "busy." But we do not need "busy" to keep us in constant fight or flight mode. Even as someone who is constantly busy, what I know to be the truth is that the frantic feeling comes from challenges with time management. I have polled the members of Our Success Group, and many of them indi- cate that their number one challenge is managing their time — the jug- gling act that we all do daily. If this sounds familiar to you, keep read- ing, because the secret I know is this: we don't have a time management problem but rather a priority management problem. My goal is to share with you three questions that will help you go from frantic to strategic. When we get clear on the priorities, we can better manage our time, say no to projects more quickly, and regain control over our most precious resource — time. Priority management is easier said than done, so these three questions give us a great framework to measure our priorities with. Before you plan your week, start your day, or tackle a mountainous task list, break out these three questions and strategically move forward. Is this task important right now or for my future? When we feel frantic and have tasks on our list, they all feel essen- tial at some level. is question helps us measure the importance of the task beyond the current moment. When measuring the task's priority for Aaron Montgomery is certified by New York Times best-selling author Jack Canfield as a Success Principles Trainer and is the co-founder of Aaron has over 25 years of experience with personalized products and small business development and is the co-creator of the "5 Keys of Business Success." You can also find Aaron co-hosting the decorator's industry podcast 2 Regular Guys Podcast ( Also, check him out on his podcast channel called Small Business Saturdays (SmallBusiness your future, you will also realize that most of your tasks are someone else's priority. Even if the task is your priority, could it be a good idea that needs to be filed away for a future time? Will doing that task right now make a considerable positive impact on your future? For this question to be some- thing you can honestly answer, you must work from clear goals aligned with your larger purpose or reason. If you have not been able to get some clarity on that, reach out to me. I'm happy to help explore that with you over at If your gut tells you that the task or proj- ect is only important right now, it doesn't mean you have to scratch it off the list and try to forget about it. I would encourage you to have a system for managing your tasks where you can take these "right now" tasks and assign them. Complete them if they can be knocked out quickly and not interrupt your day. Or you can delegate them or dump them to a secondary list so you don't feel like you will forget about them. Finding a system that works for you and making sure you own and run your life by that system is crucial to getting from constantly frantic to strategic. How much does it affect my future? After determining if the task is essen- tial for your future, it is time to ask your- self about its level of importance to your future. Again, clarity on your goals and a clear vision or reason will make this ques- tion possible to answer. e answer to this question allows you to assign the appro- priate amount of time to the task. If it is imperative to your future, you should allo- cate more time. I assign a number between one and 10 based on how much it could 1 2

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