by Anastasia Bennett, TwoBrain Mentor
We all have the same 24 hours in a day, so why does it seem like some people have more?
One of the most common questions that I get asked by entrepreneurs is, “How can I get everything done in the time I have?”
Most of my clients feel so overwhelmed by running a business and looking after their family that they often think they don’t have time to look after themselves.
When you learn good time management skills you will feel less pressure, less anxiety, and a sense of mental freedom to make right decisions. What does this mean? It means you are more productive and less stressed.
Here are some of my favourite tips to help you manage your time more effectively and efficiently:
“Bad ideas don’t kill businesses; too many good ideas kill businesses.”
Too many ideas can cause mental clutter. It’s important to understand that not every idea has to be acted upon. Just because someone else is doing it doesn’t mean that it’s right for your business, so ask yourself: “Is this going to help me get closer to my vision?” You need to figure out which of your ideas or projects are important for your business and what impact they will have.
Many people don’t realize that focus, not great ideas, is responsible for success.. Work on one task at a time and avoid over-committing yourself. Ask yourself, “how much time do I have to complete this task?” instead of “How long should it take to complete this?”
Your decision should be based on the time available. Start with the smallest, fastest task that you can cross off your list first.
Learn how to concentrate on one task and block everything else in order to complete and move on to the next one.
Lack of direction can be a big problem. When you are unclear in your vision or how to get there, it’s hard to create time for important things. Without direction we tend to procrastinate and waste time on other things, then complain that we don’t have time to get anything done. The people who seem to have more than 24 hours in their day know their vision, their mission and direction they need to take, and they don’t lose time trying to figure out where they want to go with each and every task.
Make appointments with yourself
After you have made a decision about your direction and priorities, create a To Do list and block out time in your calendar.
Book family time, fitness time and work time and don’t compromise it. Learn how to say “no” to new ideas until you have completed everything else you have scheduled into your calendar. If you have family time scheduled in your calendar, don’t push it aside for work time.
Don’t forget to block some downtime as well. Each appointment that you make is important – including the ones you make with yourself.
If it is taking too long for you to complete something, reassess the situation. Are you the right person for this task? Is there some else who can do it faster so you can concentrate on something that you are good at?
My dad is a builder and he always tells me: “measure it twice, cut once”. It has a different meaning to everyone, but for me it means ‘delegate’. Delegate in order to be able to do a job once and do it right. You’ll free up time and be a lot happier as a result.
You need to learn how to motivate yourself. We all have days when we don’t feel like doing anything, whether we are tired, sick or just feeling blah. This is when discipline and self- motivation come in to play. As a business owner, you are a leader. Motivation is the key for leadership. If you want to become a better business owner and have a more successful business, start with working on yourself and your own motivation. You are responsible to achieving results and getting work done. There is no one to hold you accountable for your success unless you have a mentor; then he or she will make sure that you are moving to the right direction.
The only way to finish a job is to start it, so don’t put it off for tomorrow if it can be done today!
And so we come full circle. How to get motivated? Have a clear direction and vision for yourself and your business. Plan ahead, set long term goals and create your 90-day action plan.
Here is a kick start from me to you:
- Create a business vision
- Set 10 year, 3 year, and 1 year goals
- Create a 90 day action list
- Decide what is most important for your business; what will help you to achieve your 90 days actions
- Create a To Do list
- Determine how much time you have for business each week
- Decide how much time you need to complete each task/action
- Determine which tasks you can finish next week
- Block your calendar for family, business, down time, fitness
- Say “no” to the ideas that don’t fit your plan – add them to a wish list for the future
- Stick to your plan for 1 week, and email me and let me know how it went!