Are you being productive with your days? Are you achieving what you need to achieve or do you feel like you are getting nowhere fast?
Trust me, I know how that feels. I used to feel like I wasn't getting things done and my days were dwindling away. I knew things had to change though if I wanted to start getting some results.
So I did a bit of looking around to see how I could make myself work more efficiently, but I didn't want to take any of the joy out of my day either. So this is what I did.
I started off with an action plan.
I made an action plan for my business, the business I work with my husband, my home and personal goals. For each of these areas in my life I did a 30 day, 60 day and 90 day action plan.
In each of those time frames I wrote down what I wanted to achieve and at the end of the 90 days the result that I expected. Most of the actions were to be initiated by me but with the business that I share with my husband some of those actions needed to be initiated by him if we were to get the results we desired.
Each week I revisted my action plan and as each task was completed I ticked it off. If for some reason a task wasn't completed on time I noted down why and highlighted it to make sure that it got dealt with in a timely manner. Thankfully there wasn't much of that and 90% of the tasks I set myself were completed on time.
The other thing I did was set about activating a productivity game plan.
To do that, first I looked at the productivity triangle by Eben Pagan.
The triangle on the left is little time given to high lifetime value things and a lot of time to things that at zero value. In other words, less time doing things that are important and more time is wasted doing things that add no value. The second triangle is inverted and high lifetime value items are now given more time and space and less to things that add zero value.
High Lifetime Value are things that have long term value such as developing skills, a brand, systems and the right culture. These things will result in money being made automatically if applying it to business. If applying it to personal things it will result in long term satisfaction.
High Dollar Value are things that require specialized skills like advertising, prospecting, writing proposals etc. These things may cost anywhere from $50 - $200.
Low Dollar Value are things like administrative, research, updating spreadsheets, appointments etc. These things cost less
Zero/Negative Value adds no value whatsoever. They are distractions such as checking emails, micormanaging, facebook, long inefficient meetings.
So as you can see it just makes sense to spend more time on things that are going to add more value to your business and your life.
Firstly always start off your day with high productivity activities.
Step 1 - Prepare your mind. Do something to activate your body and mind and get you ready to work. Here are a few examples of good activities: meditation, aerobic exercise, going for a brief walk, journaling, prayer, etc.
Step 2 - Get Clear on Your Priorities. Take a few minutes to write down the top two or three things you absolutely MUST get done today. No more than two or three things!
Step 3 - Set Your Intention. Pick the ONE task from your priorities list that is the highest value task and that requires the most brain power. Then
Step 4 - Get into Flow. Work for a period of 60-90 minutes with single-minded focus on that one high value task. Get rid of all outside distractions and turn off your e-mail during this time.
Step 5 - Rest and Recover. Take 5-10 minutes to take a break and refresh your brain. Get up and move around if you’ve been sitting. Go for a walk! Walking for just 7-8 minutes increases your creativity by 60%. Stretch out your legs and arms.
Step 6 - Repeat from Step Three. Look back at your list of priorities and pick the next task you’ll work on for the next block of flow time. If you didn’t finish the first task, you can continue working on it. If you did finish, move on to your next priority.
Step 7 - Digital Detox. At night stop using your computer, ipad, etc. at least 2 hours before you go to sleep. The digital detox period lasts until you have had a period of producing the next morning.
So there you have it. Make an action plan and then put your game plan to work. Watch your productivity grow and see what can actually be achieved when we put our minds to it.
Focus on what you are doing and the results will come.