Making time for Quadrant 2 (Covey)

If you dream of being able to have some ‘found’ relaxed time to stop and write that “proper Thank you note” to your dear friend, or catch up in general with your personal correspondence and never seem to have the time – then today’s blog post is a great reminder about our prioritization and what I’m calling “Making time for Quadrant 2” activities.  

Did you ever get around to reading the 1994 self-help book from Stephen Covey “First Things First“?   It is a wonderful companion to his book “Seven Habits of Highly Successful People“, and in my opinion you can read them in either order or stand-alone, I happen to have read both and still find them most helpful.

In a nutshell there is a 2×2 matrix with time broken out into four quadrants in the time management prioritization model Stephen Covey shows in his book – and it is attributed to Eisenhower – with the two variables of Importance and Urgency – ‘classifying tasks as urgent and non-urgent on one axis, and important or non-important on the other axis.”

In case you are not able to view the grid – here it is also in text:

“The four-quadrant “Eisenhower Decision Matrix” for importance and urgency, Wikipedia, from “First Things First (book)

Q1: Important & Urgent – i.e. Crying baby, Kitchen fire, Some calls

Q2: Non Urgent but Important – Exercise, Vocation Planning.  “These are the ones he believes we are likely to neglect; but, should focus on to achieve effectiveness.”   You can identify small goals to help achieve this and focus and make sure to include and not procrastinate.

Q3: Not Important and Urgent – Interruptions, Distractions, Other calls

Q4: Nor Important and Not Urgent – Trivia, Busy work, Time wasters

Just a reminder that what you consider a Quadrant 2 may be different from what I do for Quadrant 2 but prioritize for them is the same for both of us.

Covey_FourQuadrants_FranklinCoveyHere is a link to Time Matrix pdf from the FranklinCovey web site that shows you step by step.  And I have included the grid they have in the pdf (shown on the right)

In looking ahead at all of the ‘big rocks’ as Covey calls them – to make sure they are planned for first and everything around them I have had to adjust my calendar to free up some personal time so I can concentrate on Quadrant 2.     The time is flying by and don’t you feel happier when you are planning for it rather than reacting to it when possible?  Something to consider as we juggle all of the demands on our time.

Wishing you more Quadrant 2 time now and in the future !    Join me tomorrow for a fun Wednesday blog post here at!

Anchors Aweigh,  



Attribution & Thank you to the following who are referenced today —

Image and quotes from “First Things First (book) 1994 written by Stephen Covey, A. Roger Merrill, and Rebecca R. Merrill. on Wikipedia entry.   The Covey 4 Quadrants – “Time management matrix as described in Merrill and Covey 1994 book “First Things First,” showing “quadrant two” items that are important but not urgent and so require greater attention for effective time management”
Seven Habits of Highly Successful People (book) 1989 written by Stephen R. Covey on Wikipedia @Wikipedia.   
Image above from PDF file — Time Matrix pdf from the FranklinCovey web site that shows you step by step  “LiveClicks TM webinar workshops – Time Management Fundamentals TM – Achieving Your Highest Priorities Toolkit” pdf. @FranklinCoveyHQ
Addendum – affiliate link added: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People(Miniature Edition) (Miniature Editions); Hardcover – Abridged, September 26, 2000, by Stephen R. Covey  (Author)



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