A lot of people mistake activity for achievement & this is the reason why I find TODO lists inefficient. You can cross of every topic on your TODO list but you havent really produced any results. You need to shift your thinking towards what you really are after is a specific result or outcome.
The RPM Method
A few years ago I had the privilege, through my employer, to be coached for a full year by a coach assigned to Tony Robbins company. During this year I was introduced to the RPM method that Tony developed.
For those of you who are not familiar with Tony Robbins, he is one of our times most respected gurus in the self-development field. He runs 10 companies, he travells the world and are on stage 10 – 12 hours / day during his seminars. He needed a system that allowed him to focus on the most important aspects, in all areas of life, on a daily basis.
RPM stands for Rapid-Planning-Method but could also be translated to “Results focused-purpose driven-massive action plan” which in its core essence describe the process really well.
RPM is really a way of thinking rather than a time management system. The method is designed so the first step is to define and ask yourself. What do I really want? What is the result or outcome that I´m after and be really clear on that and as specific as possible. I will use my Ironman race as an example to illustrate how the method works. There is a difference between “I want to compete in Ironman” and “16:e of Aug 2014 finish Ironman Kalmar under 14 hours”.
The second question is WHY? Why do I want this goal? What are the reasons you have to achieve it? You have to make sure that the reasons are your reasons. You can’t be trying to achieve results and goals for other people’s reasons. You’ve got to make sure that they are your own and that these reasons really inspire and motivate you because this is what’s going to give you the juice to get you going.
Try to associate emotions to the result and the actions that you’re going to be taking. You want to make sure that everything you do, you have a purpose for doing it.
My result is to finish Ironman under 14 hours & my PURPOSE was “Feeling of pride”, “Prove to myself that I have control and able to do whatever I want”, “Call myself Ironman”, “role model for my kids that everything is possible once you make a decision”.
Massive actions & the Pareto principle
Knowing the result I´m after and why it is time to focus on the “Massive actions” that will make the result a reality. List all of the things you could to that could help you get the result.
Vilfredo Pareto was an Italian economist who introduced the Pareto Principle, also know as the 80/20 rule, when he showed that 20% of the Italian population owned 80% of the assets. This theory has since been approved in many different areas including productivity. 20% of your activities will give you 80% of your result.
So lets say that we have a list of 10 actions items – identify what 2 actions that will lead you to 80% of your result. Mark them off.
The reason for doing this is that allows you to focus on the things most important and as long you get those done you know you made significant progress towards your end result. If you dont manage to get the other ones done, that´s ok, you can work on them tomorrow.
In my example my initial listed actions was:
- Decrease weight to <90 kg.
- Improve my running technic
- Exercise reguarly – 6 hours / week
- Be in control of swimming in open water
- Learn how to crawl.
- Have detailed control of my energy intake before and under the race
- Find an experienced triathlet as mentor prior the race.
The two market in bold where my initial priorities. Dont get me wrong, the other activities were also important but not something that I needed to focus on directly. In fact as I progressed towards the end results other activities were added to the list. Which is another great benefit of this method. There are many ways to achieve a result and the activities may change as you progress.
This process, way of thinking, is applicable in your daily planning, your projects, your long term planning and provides you with a actionlist based on your RESULTS. That will help you keep focus on what really matters.
Hope that you find this process useful for you to utilize to achieve the results you want.
Co-founder, Unlimited Karma