The technique is popular due to its external ease of use, it is useful to know about it, you should definitely try it, so let’s figure it out.
Dwight Eisenhower, General of the Army and 34th President of the United States, was hardly involved in the theory of time management and techniques for efficient use of time. But it is his phrase “Not all urgent matters are important and not all important matters are urgent” that best describes the principle underlying the method called the Eisenhower matrix.
Problems that the Eisenhower Matrix helps solve
Sometimes you work all day without unbending, you manage to do a bunch of things, you literally spin like a squirrel, and as a result — only fatigue and no satisfaction. Because it is not very clear how all this labor heroism brought you closer to your goal.
In time management, this is called the goal-setting problem, and its consequences can be the most devastating — life turns into a grueling marathon with rare respite and an incomprehensible result.
King Sisyphus was sentenced forever to roll a huge stone up the mountain, which fell down as soon as it reached the top. No one sentenced us to this, although sometimes it seems that we simply missed the announcement of the verdict.
It is important to understand that the problem is not that we work little or poorly, but that before starting any business we do not set the right goals and do not define priorities. One way to help sort this out is to use the Eisenhower Matrix to quickly sort tasks by priority.
The essence of the Eisenhower matrix
This technique helps you quickly sort through your to-do list, even if there are a lot of them. Outwardly, everything looks extremely simple — we look at the list of tasks and answer two questions for each.
It is important?
This is urgent?
link to the glider
We take a magnetic glider and divide it into four parts. We get four squares, in which we enter the answers to these two questions
What does the Eisenhower matrix look like?
Quadrant A: important and urgent matters
Things that, if not done, jeopardize the achievement of the goal. Tasks that need to be solved in order to avoid great difficulties in life. Health issues. If you are an efficiency monster, then this quadrant will be empty for you: you simply will not bring things to the point of falling into the “fire” sector. But you are not an efficiency monster (and neither are we), so this is unlikely to happen. The most important thing is that things happen there infrequently and in small quantities. If half of your task list is there, it’s a disaster.
Panic, however, is not worth it. In order for this quadrant to be empty, you first need to work on the content of other sectors.
Quadrant B: important but not urgent
Primary activity. There are tasks that need to be given maximum attention. Those who work well with this quadrant will be successful in achieving their goals. Important tasks that do not burn, which means we do not do them in a state close to panic. There are no obstacles to perform them as efficiently as possible. Just don’t delay — tasks from this quadrant can move to sector A.
Quadrant C: urgent but not important matters
distracting factors. Completing these tasks does not help achieve the goal, they interfere with focusing on what is really important, reduce efficiency and exhaust.
Quadrant D: non-urgent and non-important matters
A paradoxical quadrant, because there live things that do not carry any benefit; our favourites. Listen. Our favorite music is playing here, a comfortable chair is waiting and the participation of the brain is practically not required. Social networks, talking on the phone and in instant messengers, surfing the net, computer games — we tried to convince ourselves that “this is also for work” or “you must also rest sometimes.
How to use the Eisenhower matrix in time management
There are many different, sometimes not very compatible methods and techniques in time management. And this is not a disadvantage, because people are different. What works great for one will not work for another. Therefore, you will inevitably have to try different techniques, choosing the right one. Start right now. Draw the Eisenhower matrix template and try to fill it in.
Important! It may not work out right away, but even the first attempts will help you get an idea of the priorities of your current affairs and tasks.