Hand by Castor & Pollux from The Noun Project

Hand by Castor & Pollux from The Noun Project

It feels good to be productive, but it’s not uncommon to look back at your day and feel like you’ve accomplished little to nothing, especially if you’ve been burning the midnight oil and working piecemeal on a multitude of projects. To avoid feeling overwhelmed by your tasks, and subsequently underwhelmed by your perceived lack of progress, J.D. Meier suggests that you only bite off three things you can accomplish each day:

Start your day with The Rule of 3. Know the minimum you want for the day – simply identify three results. These are your “tests for success.” It’s your chance to define your success, and you get a clean slate each day…Remember that these three outcomes aren’t tasks. You might have lots of tasks that roll up to these three outcomes, but these are three results your want for the day.

Set healthy boundaries for yourself. The Rule of 3 will give you clarity and help you focus on the right things. When you’re fully engaged, you’ll produce your best results. And by consistently achieving a good day’s work, chances are you’ll keep going. 


  • http://SourcesOfInsight.com/ J.D. Meier

    I find it helpful to think in terms of 3 Wins:

    * 3 Wins for the day

    * 3 Wins for the week

    * 3 Wins for the month

    … etc.

    This helps me test if I’m focused on the right outcomes.

    I have a lot of demands each day, and a lot of things competing for my limited time, energy, and focus. I need a simple way to avoid getting overwhelmed, and to appreciate (and put a bow) on my accomplishments.

    By identifying 3 outcomes that I want to achieve by the end of the week, it helps me have a much better week. It helps me focus and prioritize. It also helps me figure out what’s worth spending my time on.

    The real beauty is that end of the week, I can look back on what I achieved in a simple way. For example, this week …

    1) I completed my second week of an extreme workout

    2) I drafted plans for our team’s next year of work

    3) I won over a key partner to support our new efforts this year

    Of course, I did way more than that. But these are the 3 highlights that help remind me of where I spent my time and what was worth it. It’s what a lot of choices each day, turned into significant results, and things that really mattered.

    I like to think in terms of “Wins” because it add the fun element, and it reminds us to focus on the achievement, not the task … It’s not “call back a customer,” it’s “win a raving fan.”

    The Rule of 3 helps us have more meaningful moments, and it helps us make our moments matter more (after all, we are the authors of our lives and write our story forward.)

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