As business owners or entrepreneurs we tend to have way too much on our plate at any one time. This is especially true if we run our business solo— it just comes with the territory.
In this post, I’ll be sharing some thoughts and ideas with you to help you be more productive.
Know your end goal and how to get there
Having a goal and a clear path to achieve it can help us stay focused on what’s important and not get distracted by things that don’t serve our objective.
Lack of clarity or obscure goals leaves room for other things to creep in or influence what we do.
Take the time to map out a game plan that is set around our key objectives and use it as a guiding compass to stay on track.
Prioritise the most important and urgent activities
When there’s a list of things to do, it is important to tackle the things that will help us achieve results.
Oftentimes what ends up happening is that we do “busy work”— the type of things that seem easy and make us look busy, but don’t really have a big impact — but we neglect to do the things that are truly helping us make progress.
To figure out what we need to work on first we first need to understand what our goal is
Check your email less
Emails can come in at any time, and if we are not careful, we can spend hours of our day just being a slave to our inbox by reading and answering emails as they come in.
When we do this we are allowing what comes into our inbox to dictate our day. One of the things that I have done is to limit the times I check email throughout the day.
I only check for emails twice a day—once in the morning and once in the afternoon—and I communicate this to others so that I can manage their expectations. Doing this allows me to be free to concentrate on my important tasks and get work done.
Now of course there are some situations where I know something is coming in that I need to pay attention to. In those cases, I obviously make an exception and check, but I try to stick to my routine.
Block time for important tasks
Oftentimes I hear others say, “I don’t have time” or “I can’t find the time” when it comes to getting things done. This makes me think to myself whether or not they really want to make progress.
Here’s the thing, in order to get anything done, we have to make time. It’s either we find a way or we remain in the same position.
I heard this from one of my mentors, “we either make progress or we make excuses, but we can’t do both”. We may not want to hear this, but it is the simple truth.
Now, one way to ensure that we make time in our day to perform our important tasks is to do time blocking.
This is where you schedule a chunk of time—an hour, or a few hours—in your calendar which will be dedicated to your activities. Having it in your calendar helps you plan ahead and encourages you to be more organised.
Be prepared to make sacrifices
It goes without saying that we have to sometimes make sacrifices in order to achieve what we want. It sometimes means we have to give up some of our favourite things for a while, or lock ourselves away from society.
But knowing that we are doing it for a greater good should be the driving force behind every decision we make with our entrepreneurial journey.
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