Do you regularly wish there were more hours in the day?
Or wonder why others seem so organised when you feel frazzled?
Today I’m going to let you into 3 of my favourite secrets to overcoming the overwhelm and feeling like you’re in control of your workload.
Time management is a lie!
There are 24 hours in every day, 60 minutes in every hour and 60 seconds in every minute. None of that is negotiable. None of it is stretchable, shrinkable, repeatable or manoeuvrable. Time is simply not manageable. No wonder all those time management techniques don’t seem to work!
The good news is that, although you can’t manage time, what you choose to DO with your time is completely negotiable. That’s totally within your control. The most significant thing you can do to feel like you’re in control of your time is to recognise that you are able to make a choice every minute of every day about what you do with your time. You can’t manage time, but you can manage YOU! The next time things feel too hectic or out of control, take a breath and ask yourself whether you’re making the right choice about where to dedicate your time. Get into the habit of doing that a few times every day and you’ll be amazed how quickly you feel as though you’re managing your time instead of having it manage you.
Transform your productivity by planning tomorrow today
This one small tip is probably the most powerful productivity tool available. Develop a habit of making the last thing you do each day the writing of your plan for tomorrow and your output will rocket. There are 3 amazing benefits to doing this.
- It closes off your working day and gives you permission to relax and switch off. When you run your own business switching off can be a massive challenge. There are often a gazillion things swimming around your head about what needs doing, who needs a call, an email, a proposal, a reminder etc. Recharging your batteries is incredibly important though so switching off is crucial. And besides, you didn’t start your own business because you wanted it to take over your life did you?
- Your subconscious brain is hugely powerful. Neuroscientists state that our subconscious brain is responsible for anywhere between 95 and 99% of everything we do. It’s running the show! The great thing is that it does that without effort or energy so tapping into its abilities to use them to your advantage is a huge positive. By writing tomorrow’s ‘to do’ list today you effectively hand it over to your subconscious brain to slot everything beautifully into place overnight without you even noticing it’s happening. Do you remember the old saying ‘if you sleep on it everything will seem clearer in the morning’? It really works!
- The first 20 minutes of your working day will set the tone for the rest of the day. If your first 20 minutes are typically trying to work out what you’re supposed to be doing today, who you need to call or email, where you’ve got to be, or what all this mountain of paperwork is on your desk then you can look forward to a day that feels jumbled and disorganised; it’s going to feel like you’re winging it! If you already know what the first item on today’s plan is and your ‘to do’ list is the only thing you need to focus on when you get to your desk, then you’re on the path to a really productive and poised day.
Review, Review, Review
Take 5 minutes at the end of each day, and 30 minutes at the end of each week to review that time and you will unearth more and more ways to improve your organisation and your output. Ask yourself these three questions:
- What was the best thing about today? When you run your own business the chances are that you very rarely give yourself a pat on the back for what’s gone well. Take a moment to celebrate the good stuff no matter how small. If that all sounds a bit fluffy, don’t worry, there’s also a very strategic reason to ask this question. When you skim past the good stuff you often miss the chance to replicate the achievement or attract more of that kind of opportunity into your business. So … what went well today and how can you do more of it?
- What would I improve about today?This isn’t about beating yourself up for the things that didn’t go as you would have liked, it’s all about learning something about your business every day. Each time you ask how you could do something better, you improve your business bit by bit.
- What’s my key focus for tomorrow? Remember the amazing power of your sub-conscious brain? When you plant the seed about the most important thing you want to achieve tomorrow, the chances of you doing that increase enormously.