Sharpen The Saw
Ashley Napoli

When someone comes to your door and rings the bell, there is an urgency about answering. When you spend time with your family, there is importance. Not every task is urgent and not every task is important and clearly not every task is urgent and important. We tend not to categorize our activities in this way, yet it is important to be aware of the time we dedicate to our daily tasks so that we don’t sacrifice our passions and dreams for the laundry list of things we need to get done.

Here at A Wakened Events (AWE), we talk a great deal about being mindful. Is our mind too full to be mindful? Mindful time management, or being aware of how we spend our time, is key to  creating more time for the things that we love. Family, hobbies, and interests usually fall to the bottom of our list of priorities.

Most realize that you should first spend your time on activities that are both urgent and important. However, the deceptors are those tasks that are urgent but not important and they can lure us into doing things that we may do right but they’re just simply not the right things.

When a manager, parent or outside authority gives a task a high priority, the urgency seems to blind the doer from deciding whether or not it is important (or just urgent) and aligned with their goals. This can lead to misalignment, unhappiness, worry, and doubt. The key is to evaluate tasks and then recategorize and/or reprioritize to stay on track and be fulfilled.

Stephen Covey, the author of “Seven Habits of Highly Effective People,” tells a story of a lumberjack who says he does not have time to sharpen his saw while cutting down a tree. Sharpening the saw is important but not urgent, however it would yield amazing benefits in the future. Just as spending our free time refilling our bucket would make us more productive and less burdened by our work tasks. How do you fill your cup? What hobbies or favorite pastimes rejuvenate and relax you so that you can feel like your whole self again? Self development and exploration is like sharpening the saw. It is not urgent. It is important and would yield future benefits. The more self aware that we are and the more that we sharpen the tools that we use to live our life, the more productive and ultimately happy we will be.

At A Wakened Events, we will help you find ways to sharpen your saw. You will have an opportunity to assess your life and learn tools that will make you more productive, more fulfilled, and more joyous.