Hopper Time Preference vs. Hyper Focus Time Preference
At first glance, Hoppers appear to be masters of multi-tasking.
They move easily between To Do’s and seem to be getting things done. The operative words here are “seem to be”. Upon closer examination, though, many Hoppers aren’t deliberately switching between their priorities instead they’re bouncing between tasks as a distraction from what they mean to do.
Learning to manage your priorities is a major indicator of managing your time effectively. Therefore if you’re a natural Hopper Time Style Personality, you need to learn how to hop productively.
The good news is that if you desire frequent change-ups in space or pace, you can still stay on top of things if you focus on the most important items. I lovingly refer to Hoppers as ‘adrenaline junkies’ – those who need ‘brain candy’ to keep things interesting. While Hoppers are amazing at juggling multiple tasks, they may not be as productive when their hopper tendencies are distracting as opposed to focusing their attention.
I had this Hopper client…
Suzie, a client of mine, is the director of a non-profit agency that works with musicians in her small town. She is also a song-writer and performer, and along with coaching other artists, books them in area venues. She constantly needs to switch hats in order to manage all the different aspects of her business and still make time for her own creative pursuits. We worked together on the management side of her business, and I was fascinated with how attuned Suzie was to what kind of mental space she liked to be in in order to do the different kinds of tasks required of her.
She told me how she would transition throughout the day from left-brained, technical office work to more imaginative studio priorities by tuning in to how she felt at the moment. When her energy flagged she took a short break or moved to something less demanding but equally important. That way, she could proceed through her day efficiently, matching tasks activities to the best moment to do them. In addition, when she wasn’t able to stop or change what she was doing because of deadline pressure, by staying aware she could focus on what she needed to do at the moment to keep up her energy.
[Tweet “#Hoppers multitask. #HyperFocus attacks 1 task at a time. What’s your #Time Style? #TSSI #productivity”]
On the opposite end of this spectrum are Hyper Focus individuals…
They find it easier and more satisfying to stick with one thing until it’s completed. This is not a problem unless their schedule is too crowded and they must move on to other priorities. They might find it difficult to break out of that intensely absorbed state of mind.
I had this Hyper Focus client…
Mike is a graduate student with a very full schedule. He plans his evenings well but rarely finishes the tasks he sets up for himself because he doesn’t heed his own time parameters to stop an assignment at a certain time and move on to the next. He resists the transition point, particularly when he’s in the middle of doing something very interesting or that which needs refining.
He asked me to help him devise systems to stay on track and we began with simple timers to alert him that he was nearing the end of the allotted time, and then to tell him to move on. Interestingly, he would just ignore the bells and buzzers if he was very involved in what he was doing. So we started to “chunk” his work into 20 minute segments so that he would be more likely to “come up for air” at regular intervals. After two 20 minute segments, he would visit the rest room if needed and drink some water.
We discovered that there were specific circumstances where in Mike would tend to get more stuck than others – research pertaining to his strongest interests, for example, and re-writing already adequately written papers to make them “perfect”. We decided that he would benefit from some strategies custom-designed for ADD personalities in addition to our work together.
Mike will have to work diligently to manage his Hyper Focus style of studying, but his ability to focus on his research work and produce good results is strong.
[Tweet “Do you zig-zag like a #Hopper, or #HyperFocus on 1-at-a-time? #TimeStyle #TSSI #productivity”]
Can You Relate? Share What Works For You In The Comments!
- What about these two style preferences resonates for you?
- Do you have any examples, tricks or techniques to share of your own?
- I invite you to pull back the curtain and reveal your techniques that work to manage your time in the comments section below!
Once you identify your time style personality preferences (Hopper, Hyper Focus, Big Picture, Perfectionist Plus, Impulsive, and Cliff Hanger) you can begin to take steps to integrate more Flow into your experience.
The Time & Space Style Inventory™ (TSSI™) is an online assessment tool that evaluates your organizing personality type and your time management style preferences. It helps you determine your natural approach to how you manage priorities, attend to details, and take action. By learning your dominant and strong style preferences, you can make the most of your time and choose to take actions that increase flow in your life. Consistently taking the Flow Steps in your styles of dominance will help you successfully manage yourself, and your decisions about time.
Embrace your natural Time Management Personality Style!
Make it work for you – take the Time & Space Style Inventory™ and see what makes you tick! When you identify your dominant time and space personality style preferences you make better, more informed decisions, become more productive and unltimately enhance your experience so you can enjoy your life @ http://bit.ly/tssifree.
Cena Block (sanespaces.com) specializes in helping moms design their home-based businesses on their own terms. We build smart supportive systems that create time for living. A productivity expert with more than 25 years of experience in human performance and training, Cena has collaborated with professional organizer and author Sunny Schlenger (suncoach.com) to create the Time & Space Style Inventory™. This is the only online assessment tool that identifies natural time management personality types and space organizing styles. Your personalized TSSI Style Report comes with 60 days access to the TSSI Hub. It contains everything you need to create a personalized roadmap to manage your time and space. Find Sunny’s new book: Flow Formula: A Guidebook to Wholeness and Harmony on Amazon.com.