3 Tips to Become More Productive
If you are fortunate enough to be running your own business, you are likely familiar with the never-ending list of items that need to be done on a daily basis. No matter how productive I might be on a given day, I still end up creating a new list for the following day with items that I just couldn’t get to in time. Some days I make that list for the next day and wonder, “what in the world did I actually accomplish today?” But if I were to make a list of all of the things I accomplished, perhaps I would notice that list is greater than the list of outstanding items. Sound familiar? In order to become more productive, here are a few tips to help you achieve more.
1. Shift Your Focus to Positive
As women, and especially as entrepreneurs, we tend to focus on the negative when we view ourselves. When I work with a new coaching client, I always ask them to give me three strengths and three weaknesses about themselves. They later admit that the weaknesses were fairly easy to identify, but the strengths were almost impossible.
I think the reason is because we are great at finding fault in ourselves. For example, I remember writing my book last year. My goal was waking up each morning at 5am to write and try to hit a 2000 word goal daily. There were weeks where I achieved this four times, only to sleep in that Friday. Instead of praising myself for achieving 8000+ words in a week, I harped on the fact that I skipped a day. My new initiative this year is to celebrate the wins and forgive myself for the losses.
2. Forgive Yourself
In many cases, not being able to forgive ourselves for falling short is actually what causes us to procrastinate on other much-needed projects. We might feel embarrassed by our inability to keep up with the workload, and instead of reaching out for help or support, we suffer in silence and avoid taking on bigger projects. We need to switch into high gear to tackle those big items to achieve our big picture goals, but we tend to put them off and run out of time.
Tim Urban delivered a hilarious TED Talk called “Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator,” which breaks down why certain people wait until the last minute to finish projects just in time to meet the deadline. It’s comical in nature, but touches on a real reason people procrastinate, and it has more to do with not being able to see the big picture benefits over immediate needs or gratification.
3. Just Start
Think about it; what goal do you have for 2017 that you know you need to take action on and just haven’t started? Perhaps it’s a podcast you want to create or a book you want to write, but you find yourself aimlessly scrolling through Facebook for an hour every day. Maybe you have been trying to develop an email list for your business to start an email campaign, but that stack of business cards has been sitting neatly on your desk collecting dust for the past six months. Whatever the initiative, I guarantee if you just start it, you will feel ten times better.