This expression has stayed in my mind for years and these 6 little words have really helped me be more productive at work.
I had an employer who would write notes of tasks to complete during the workday that were often neglected, mostly because the little jobs weren’t “easy” or “fun” (think toilets!). My boss would bold, underline and highlight these jobs in an attempt to get our attention, to no avail. Then, along with the attempts to get our attention came the phrase,
“This is a Five Minute Job!”
(Also in bold, underlined and highlighted.)
For some reason, this made me realize that, indeed, these terrible tasks only take a few minutes to complete. It took me more effort, time and thought to avoid the chore than it did to actually complete it.
I have carried this phrase with me, and I use it every day when I’m thinking of a reason not to do something (we all do that, right?). Even if the dreaded job is longer than 5 minutes, I can approach it more realistically, knowing the small task is not my life sentence, and I’ll feel accomplished when I’m done.
- What are you avoiding?
- What are your employees avoiding?
- How much better would you feel if these tasks were simply done rather than lingering on your do-to list?
I’m done… and it only took 6 minutes!