One of my New Year’s resolutions was, of course, to get back in the gym, which I’m now starting halfway into 2015. After one workout, I complained to a friend about how I felt I didn’t feel like I pushed myself hard enough. He asked, “Well, did you sweat?”
I responded, “Yes.”
“Then you worked out,” he said. Oh, that makes sense.
This small epiphany carries truth that applies to the entrepreneur lifestyle:
1. Just get it done. You don’t have to invest all of your energy to feel like you did a task or project well; the point is that it gets done so that you can move on to something else. It’s speed and efficiency that count sometimes.
2. Use system(s) that work for the way that you work.
In my case, I have trouble committing to use one system, so I rotate through a few that I use depending on how I feel. I carry a small notebook and write up daily to-do lists on it with high-level priorities for the day. Something that can fit in my laptop carrier or briefcase works best. For something more professional looking, moleskin looks and feels great.
I also have a running note saved as a shortcut in Evernote (I use both the mobile and desktop apps) that divides up my daily tasks for each of the areas of my life: personal, business, and volunteer.
Advanced Productivity Tip: Set reminders in your calendar – in bulk. You can download this free spreadsheet template, create your appointments in bulk, download as a .csv file, and import into Google Calendar or iCal to create multiple events. As long as you have your reminders configured, you’ll be reminded of when your events are taking place. With the Google Calendar app on your phone, you can check your daily agenda and get pop-up/sound notifications, as well.
3. Over-communicate. This is particularly important for creatives and big-picture thinkers: You have to tell people what you need ahead of time in the clearest, simplest terms possible. Remind clients of important deadlines throughout the project duration. Gently remind them of the consequences of not following the project plan; you’ve got one of those, right?
4. Pace yourself. Build in time for your meals and breaks. If you’re not first in the order of priorities, it’s going to be very hard to get things done.
5. Delegate. When the workload is too heavy to bear, you have to make a judgment call that you need an extra set of hands. Whatever you can delegate to more junior members of your team, or if you are the team, to a virtual assistant company, the more time you will have to focus on the tasks that really matter – serving your clients, perfecting your products, dreaming big dreams.
What other habits have you formed that help you get the most done? Please share below!