Last week, we introduced our new series: Super Simple Productivity Plan for Pastors. Over the next 6 weeks, we will be covering what I believe is a system that will revolutionize the way you work, plan, and rest. Not only have I experienced the benefits of this plan in my own life, but I have walked countless clients through it as well. There is no doubt: when this plan is implemented, productivity increases. Today, we’ll be discussing the first step. Let’s get into it. We all have tasks that must be completed. Many of us live and die by our to-do list. Unfortunately, our task list is not a crystal ball that predicts the future. Although we have things that need to get done, we cannot ignore the unexpected obstacles that present themselves throughout our day. Sometimes we get a phone call from a hurting church member; other times we get called into meetings that we weren’t planning to have. But instead of getting upset when faced with these unexpected things, we must plan our day with the possibility of such issues in mind. Our Super Simple Productivity Plan will help us do just that. Plan your day with one simple phrase: 50-10-01.  

  1. 50 Minutes on Task.

    Begin by planning your day in fifty minute increments. Many people plan their days in one hour increments, but when your inbox is full and you have back to back meetings, you leave no room for things that may come up. When you have an extra ten minutes on every hour to deal with the unexpected, you will not lose control of your schedule should a meeting go long or someone stop by your office.
  1. 10 Minutes of Busy Work.

    This 10-minute block on every hour not only creates space for dealing with the unexpected, it also allows you to respond to emails, tidy up your desk, and collect your thoughts before tackling the next item on your agenda. Grab a cup of coffee, check in with your assistant, and stay on top of the little things.
  1. 01 Hour of Margin.

    I recommend to all of my clients that they allow the last hour of their day to act as a buffer, meaning nothing is on the schedule during this time. Let’s go back to our glass full of water. When we leave the last hour of our day free, we leave space in the glass to deal with dropping lemons. Lemons are going to drop; that is unavoidable. But the best way to avoid overflow is to plan for it. Create space in your glass by leaving the last hour of your day open to handle the unexpected.
  When you use the 50-10-01 method for scheduling your day, you create the space you need to handle the unexpected. Instead of being ruled by life’s lemons, we are able to address those things with grace and still accomplish the items on our agenda. We don’t have to be ruled by the expectations, needs, and demands of others; we can perform with excellence no matter what comes our way.  


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