I have been playing the video shown below in my NewHabits time management programs, primarily to illustrate Orange Belt scheduling skills.
It’s a great teaching video, as it shows clearly the advantage of using a schedule (even on paper) over a list, or personal memory. It’s an essential level of skill for college students who are taking lots of classes, have lots of assignments and want to do well.
In other words they are inundated with time demands, and many migrate to Yellow belt skills in order to deal with the volume they must handle. As I watched the video I realized that I probably used these skills as a college student who had a full course-load, and a part-time job.
But something happened when I graduated. All of a sudden the volume dropped, as I no longer had the same time challenges, and I recall the sense of relief I felt at no longer ever having to feel the pressure of an exam date.
Unfortunately, I also threw out the baby with the bathwater, and lost my Yellow belt Scheduling skills.
It wasn’t until later, when I started my own company, that I began to rediscover these skills. Once again, it was in response to a huge increase in time demands, and a situation in which I had to upgrade my skills in order to cope.
I imagine that I’m not alone here.
One of the basic tenets of Time Management 2.0 is that one’s skills are not fixed, and they change over time in response to the number of time demands we face in our lives. The problem comes when we practice our habits for so long that we lose the ability to change them, and even defend our old habits as somehow “fixed” and impossible to change.
The useful thing is to know that we can change them, and that they are indeed malleable, even though I’m sure it’s harder to teach older dogs like myself new tricks.