LifeQuadrants
Your task management for highest productivity

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What is LifeQuadrants?
The functionality of LifeQuadrants
The positioning of tasks inside the LifeQuadrants system
Which tasks should be treated preferentially?
Summary about the meaning of the single quadrants
The context / different areas of life
Literature


What is LifeQuadrants?

'Busy all day and yet I somehow managed to not get any work done at all!'

Sound familiar? Seems like you might have problems choosing which tasks to attend to first. Have LifeQuadrants put an end to this!

LifeQuadrants is a task management system that will help you select those tasks that are really important. LifeQuadrants uses the tried and true Eisenhower Matrix to display your tasks.

Instead of thoughtless processing of one job after another without actually making progress, LifeQuadrants helps you to select exactly those tasks whose execution has a big effect on the attainment of your goals.

LifeQuadrants is highly suitable for creative people who tend to feel restricted and lose their way when using traditional task management tools. Perhaps you, too, have experienced problems trying task management or time management systems in the past? LifeQuadrants is definitely worth a try. To find further information on the subject of 'task management for creative people' just click here.

If you have answered the questions above with 'yes', you should immediately create yourself an account for LifeQuadrants. The sign-up is absolutely free and takes only one minute. Click here to get to the sign up.

The functionality of LifeQuadrants

We've always got things to do:

  • tasks which we want to do
  • tasks which we have to do
  • tasks which we unnecessarily saddle ourselves with

But with all these tasks it must not be forgotten:

To reach the goals we have set in our life, it is important to do the right things at the right time.

LifeQuadrants is a system which will help you with exactly this.

LifeQuadrants takes up all your tasks and represents them to you in a way you will notice at first sight those which need to be done NOW. Therefore, it is possible for you to do the right things at the right time and simultaneously get a better balance between the different areas of your life.

LifeQuadrants orientates itself by the two characteristics urgency and importance. With the help of both of these values all tasks are sorted into a co-ordinate system and so, automatically, every task is put into one of the four quadrants. Each quadrant has its own meaning.

The importance is represented by the vertical axis and the urgency by the horizontal axis of the co-ordinate system.

The more important a task is, the further up it is placed. The more urgent a task is, the further to the left it is placed. Tasks migrate over time from the right to the left. As soon as their deadline is crossed, they go over from the right to the left quadrants.

Quadrants_small_en

The difference between LifeQuadrants and conventional time management systems is that in addition to the urgency the importance of tasks is also considered.

Why does this make such a difference? Tasks that are important to us, mostly don't have a deadline (and are low on urgency). An example for this is 'Spending more time with the people I love'. In conventional time management systems such tasks with high importance but without urgency tend to be edged out by the more urgent tasks. For exactly this reason it is necessary to consider also the importance of a task if one wants to bring balance in the different areas of life and decide which task should be done as the next one.

The positioning of tasks inside the LifeQuadrants system

A task which is already overdue and, in addition, is still urgent would appear in the top left quadrant.

An insignificant but overdue task is located in the bottom left quadrant.

An important task which is not urgent yet is to be found in the top right quadrant.

All tasks which are neither urgent nor important reside on the bottom right.

Now, at first sight, it probably gives the impression that one should deal, primarily, with the quadrant on the top left. However, this is not recommended. If we consider what all upper left quadrant tasks have in common they are all overdue. If one uses his whole time to finish these tasks, one reaches the following situation:

  • one works permanently under stress
  • one neglects the tasks which still could be done ON TIME
  • one gives his full concentration to tasks for which one must already justify himself anyhow

Such behavior causes the top left quadrant to overflow and leads, finally, to the situation where one pursues only crisis management instead of having your heart and head in your tasks.

Which tasks should be treated preferentially?

From the preceding subsection it follows that tasks should be treated in the upper right quadrant before tasks from the upper left quadrant. But of course, everything needs to be treated with some measure. The top left tasks are also important and should not be disregarded completely. It is important to reach a balance while doing the tasks from both upper quadrants, and to slowly reduce those in the left quadrants and to make sure that it doesn't grow too large in future any more.

The lower quadrants

The lower quadrants have in common that the tasks contained in them are not especially important. Therefore, one should invest as little time and effort as possible in the execution of these tasks. Tasks from the bottom left quadrant should be delegated as far as possible, because they, at least, have a deadline and their execution is expected by somebody. The bottom right tasks have neither a deadline nor any importance and can be, usually after to a short analysis, rejected directly. Why should one invest time in tasks that are not important and nobody waits on their completion. The bottom right quadrant exposes unnecessary time-wasting tasks which one should get rid of.

Summary about the meaning of the single quadrants

Top right

The tasks that reside here are important but still have no urgency or are still on time. These tasks should be treated preferentially, before they move to the top left quadrant and become a problem. In this quadrant all tasks can be found that mostly have no urgency (no deadline), although they are still important to us.

Top left

All tasks that reside here are already overdue and important. These tasks have to be finished. Indeed, one may concentrate not only upon these tasks, but should find a balance between the execution of the top right and top left tasks. The principal purpose for this quadrant should be to reduce it and to keep it very small without neglecting the right quadrant.

Bottom left

On account of the low importance of this quadrant, only little effort should be invested in the execution of these tasks. As far as possible these tasks should be delegated.

Bottom right

Here unnecessary time-wasters are exposed. Every task in this quadrant can normally be deleted immediately.

Quadrants_described_en

The context / different areas of life

If you pack all the tasks from your life into these quadrants then the quadrants will quickly become overcrowded. This also makes the whole thing a lot less useful, since quadrants would contain a lot of tasks that cannot be carried out at the current time or location. And this is why LifeQuadrants offers you the ability to create a new context for each area of your life, and lets you assign tasks to different contexts. Therefore related tasks can be displayed in useful juxtapositions.

Literature

LifeQuadrants has been inspired by the following books:
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