For most of my adult life my work and life have had a rhythm. A rhythm while different from most folks, but a rhythm none the less. For instance, whereas most folks lives slowed down moving into the weekend, mine increased. Days off for me occurred when most folks were working. Yet now I am trying to create a new rhythm or least I have been trying and tweaking it for nearly five years. I love what I do and believe I am following the call of God and His will for my life. Nonetheless I am always looking for ways to be more productive. Allow me a moment to share a few that I am finding helpful at this stage of my life:
- I have started to not read my emails before I have mapped out my day. I have given up on the “to-do list” and have moved to a goals/tasks folder/list. I have developed a note card page in which I list my goals for this day/week/month and what tasks broken down into bite size amounts I will accomplish this day. I do not read any emails until I have mapped out my goals and tasks for the day.
- Take small consistent actions every day.You are probably tired of hearing me say that I have been quite taken with the books the The Compound Effect and the Slight Edge. Both talk about the power of small things done daily and consistently bring large results. I am finding that I am not overwhelmed by the “largeness” of the task, I just put in twenty to thirty minutes of work per day toward each goal and after some time, I am completed. It has really made a difference. I highly recommend you consider this plan
- I make sure I do the toughest, or most draining things on my list first. There are some activities that I have to do today that do not take a lot of thought or emotion and I do them last when I don’t need to be as engaged.
- Never, ever read junk-mail. I mean never! It is a waste of time. You don’t need more junk in your life.
- Take care of yourself. You are the one responsible for you. It is no one’s job to take care of you. Physically, financially, or spiritually. You are the CEO of you.
- Keep track of your goals. I have a file that every day I keep putting my finished list and notes for the day. I keep track of what I committed to do in January and I track my progress daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly. I look at it every day. To not do this is why most people never accomplish “resolutions.” It sounded like a good idea on New Year’s Eve, but has now ended in the graveyard of good intentions. You have to plan and evaluate.
Well this is enough for now. I love learning how to be more productive. Productivity is necessary for all, but is absolutely essential for the self-employed. No matter where you work or who you work for, we are all pretty-much self-employed. Now throw the junk mail away and get started on a few small activities that will make a big impact long term.