It's rare that a book gives me more than a new spin on tried and true strategies that make life easier. However, Take Back Your Time, by Morgan Tyree, has me rethinking my priorities and gives me a deeper understanding of how to best use my time.
As a note-taker, highlighter and To-Do list maker, Take Back your Time, is designed for my little ISTJ brain. I love it and you will to! Today I want to share the structure, a few gems, the challenges AND how you can win your own copy!
First, a Little About the Author
Morgan Tyree holds a Bachelors in business administration and worked in marketing, management and in human resources. Since we share the HR hat, I felt a connection to Morgan right away. Her presence as an author has you wishing within the first few pages that you were sitting at the coffee house having deeper discussions about the pains and moxie of Taking Back Your Time. Morgan is an author, blogger and regular contributor to other major publications.
As a professional organizer, Morgan helps you "take back your time with her proven-time management system." Her website is clean and perfectly organized - it was easy to navigate and lacked the clutter of many sites. But don't let the perfection fool you! Morgan admits, in refreshing transparency, how messy and chaotic life has been. She is dynamic proof her system works. Here's how:
Take Back Your Time, Identify Your Priorities, Decrease Stress, and Increase Productivity, is nine chapters, plus an introduction and conclusion. Each chapter begins with a quote and contains homework, thoughtful tips, and ends with a one to three sentence summary.
I enjoyed the idea of having homework. The accountability built in to the assignments inspired me to take my tasks seriously. I read this book from front to back and am motivated to go back and complete each homework assignment. Plus, this gives me an opportunity to go buy a new journal. :)
1) The powerlessness of BUSY. At least ten years ago, I recall visiting a co-worker's cubicle to follow up on their part of our group project. As you know, I'm an introvert so group projects are a downfall of mine to begin with. Plus, as an ISTJ (we're pretty straight forward), if something is assigned, then...we do it. Simple. It never occurred to me that someone would not do something as assigned.
But instead of handing me her work, she shrugged, and without looking up from her monitor said, "I didn't get it done. I was too busy. Go ahead and take it back if you want."
Not only did she not complete her part of the project because she was too busy, she assumed I could take it on because I was not. My day obviously had more hours in it.
I complained to my boss and his response sticks with me to this day: "Everyone has the same amount of time in their day. She wasn't too busy. she simply made other things her priority. Don't ever let anyone tell you they were too busy."
It made so much sense then and it was so affirming to read Morgan's take on this. I was giving her a virtual fist bump when I read how similar our views on busy are. She writes, and I whole-heartily agree, that we should "get over our self-indulgent complaining about how we're so busy or there just isn't enough time in a day." (p. 56)
2) The Daily Five. If you have young children, you will want this simple, aha! tip in your life.
3) Affirmation - Even if you are doing some of the strategies already, you are affirmed they work. PLUS, when you try all of the strategies together, I'll be you have a new perspective of that strategy and how to incorporate it more efficiently.
4) Personality - Knowing your personality can only help you recognize your strengths and challenges. *Introverts - this section was made for us!
5) Time Zones - These were a favorite of mine. Three chapters neatly outline your perfect time zones. These stretch far beyond simply understanding your most efficient time of day, but helps you organize your To-Dos according to your purpose, the type of priorities you have, your productivity levels and other elements you'll have to read to appreciate.
It would be a cop-out to say this system only works for people who don't work in corporate America. Full transparency - I caught myself thinking initially, "this will only work for those three or four hours I get in the evening before I set my alarm for 5 AM and crash for the night." However, this toxic thinking goes against what we learned when we committed to stop giving in the the Powerlessness of Busy. Instead, we should be driven by our purpose (p. 38) to our priorities (p. 39) and that means claiming our time from the moment we wake until we rest our weary heads on our pillows, regardless of where we claim our work space.
It was my choice to read Take Back Your Time straight through so I could grasp all the concepts in a big mind cloud. With the second reading, I'll be able to slow down, take snapshots of the concepts, and carefully compartmentalize them for future use.
It will be during the second reading that I will take back my time after studying the concepts carefully and doing the homework with mindful intention. And because I have a genuine interest and desire to view and capture my time differently, I will absorb and engage in each chapter with high hopes of executing the strategies and breaking free from the chaos.
It's my pleasure to highly recommend Take Back Your Time, by Morgan Tyree.
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Morgan Tyree is a professional organizer (chaos calmer), writer (list lover), and fitness instructor (exercise enthusiast). She is generally energetic and motivated, but also (very) realistic. Her life tends to be full and fun, and somewhat messy too. She believes in prioritizing and measuring progress one day at a time, while also “keeping it simple.”
Morgan does have a BS degree in business administration with an emphasis in small business and entrepreneurship from the University of Oregon. She has also worked in the fields of marketing, management, and human resources. She blogs weekly on her site Morganize with Me and contributes monthly to the popular blog I'm an Organizing Junkie . She and her husband, David, have three children and live in Colorado.
To find out more about or to connect with Morgan, you can visit her website!