Keith Everett
parkinson's law

How To Get Things Done In Half The Time, The SECRET Of Parkinson’s Law

There are many hacks out there to help you get more done. Let’s be honest, we’ve all probably said at some time or other “I just don’t have the time”. We live in a world that started off at a fairly slow pace but is now speeding up to bullet-train proportions in the 21st century.

It’s FAST, FAST FAST... the problem is..

Although we have all kinds of goodies like instant gratification and the internet, we still seem to not have nearly enough time and I think Parkinson’s Law is the answer.

What Is Parkinson’s Law, And Who Was Parkinson?

The term was first coined by Cyril Northcote Parkinson in a humorous essay he wrote for “The Economist” in 1955.

Parkinson’s Law: if you carefully observe each task, then a person will spend on that task exactly as much time as allotted. If, for example, 30 minutes is given for a specific task, then it will be simplified so much that it can be done in that time. And indeed it is.

In other words, the reason people don’t get much done is that they spend as much time on the task as they think they’ve got instead of creating a time-box for the task and allotting a specific time for it to be finished.

Let me give you an example:. A woman is on holiday and she goes into a shop to find a postcard to send back to her daughter. Instead of allotting 10 minutes (and no more) on this task, she takes her time and ends up spending 45 minutes. If she had given herself 10 minutes, she probably would have found the right postcard in 10 minutes. Hence, 35 minutes of time was wasted.

Think how many times you do this during the day.

Parkinson’s Law – Get More Done In Half The Time

Let me give you another example. When I wrote my first book, it took me nearly a year to write. The reason for this was that I had not given myself a timeline to finish. I used to faff about and do a bit here and there. This literally extended the time to complete the book by around four times longer than it needed to have been. So, I became more disciplined.

I started to chunk out my time into two-hour slots. Each day I would write my book for two hours. That was it. I was laser-focused on the task, and even on a difficult day when my brain couldn’t think, I would at least write 500 words, but on a good day, I would get anything from 1000 – 2000 words done per daily 2 hr session. This actually meant that now I could now write a 30,000-word book in 4-6 weeks.

By allowing 2hrs and no more for the task, you’ll “squeeze” the task into the two hours. If you don’t put a time constraint on the task, you’ll fit your day around the task.

To me, it made sense. A lot of these classic hacks from times gone by work very well today. Had I not been using Parkinson’s Law, I probably would never have written another book. What tasks are you taking too long to do?. Wouldn’t your life be easier if you boxed off your time to fit the task instead of taking “as long as it takes”?.

I hope you got value from this post. If you did, please do leave a comment below and share the post.

Thanks in advance.


P.S People who liked this post also liked this one. – How To Make Money From Other People’s Problems

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