Scheduling Your Day: Most Important Thing First?

Personally, I am most wide awake, energetic, and focused early in the morning. Except my morning hours are usually sucked away by reading email, putting out fires, and being in meetings. Once I realized I was wasting these beautifully productive hours in things that did not require my absolute full attention, I started blocking off my precious morning hours for doing my most important things first, and moving the less important stuff later.

How about you? Have you taken notice of when you are most productive and worked to block off this time for yourself?

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James E. Evans, MISM, CSM

My most productive time is the morning as well. I tend to take my “me time” at the very beginning. Before I begin taking emails, meetings, etc. The Pomodoro technique has helped me to keep it all in check.


I’ll have to check out the Pomodoro technique.

I’ve been trying to do the same. Have at least 30 minutes to focus on important things.

Although I have the best job in the world so that usually involves hanging out on GovLoop 🙂

Andrew Krzmarzick

If I can wake up at 5:30/6:00a, I end up having my best days – that’s when I make time for prayer/reflection, exercise – top value items for me that get lost once the hum of the day has begun. Of course, getting up in the morning usually begins the night before – shutting off the TV / laptop an hour earlier.

In terms of the work day, it rings true there as well.

Classic “7 Habits of Highly Effective People” stuff – start with values, put big rocks in first! 🙂

Shannon Donelson

I love my mornings! Typically they involve a ton of email and putting out fires. I like having my meetings in the afternoon. It’s good to get away from the computer (especially for my eyes) and collaborate with folks face to face (or phone to phone).

I’ve found the best way to keep myself on track is to have a physical checklist with prioritized tasks. I call it “Today’s To-Do’s” and it keeps me on track throughout my day. I love the feeling of crossing out a task with a sharpie!

Allison Primack

Daylight Savings Time has really helped this week in getting me up early – it’s always nice to have time to wake myself up slowly before starting the day. I have found that this has helped my productivity overall – it’s easier to get going at 9am when it feels like lunchtime in my head!