The last few weeks have been nothing short of insanity for me. A whirlwind of deadlines, events, appearances, articles and all of the work. Total first world problems but still stressful to my little head. I even missed out on going to the gym because of the insanity- which did not help the mental brain fog.
Now, however, I feel like I am coming out of the shit storm with a little wisdom to share. Sure, the same thing will probably happen again in a month, but right now I’m feeling knowledgeable- so let me have my moment.
1. Get out of your own way
Mooove Bitch Get Out the waaaayy… Yes you! Move!!
Sometimes all you need to do is stop sabotaging yourself and get out of your own way. You might tend to look at all the external factors of why you can’t be more productive and you might blame, complain and point fingers at everyone and everything, except yourself. When you cant shift the blame externally, you might then resort to using excuses, desperately seeking justification that will give you comfort because ‘you have no control over what happens.’
How many excuses do you have and live by each day? ‘I couldn’t do this because…or I don’t have time to do this because…’ I am not saying that your excuses might not be valid, but I strongly believe that more than 80% of the time, they are not real; it is an avoidance technique that we subconsciously use. Why? Because it works! Sympathetic nods from friends or family. The “ohh I knows”
Not dealing with procrastination is a clear example of standing in your own way. Nobody else is going to suddenly make it go away; it will be there the next time you attempt to do whatever it is that you are trying to do. Put results before comfort, get out of your own way, and stop making excuses.
Ask yourself honestly: Are you getting in your own bloody way? And if so what would you do if it were someone else standing in your way?
2. Talk to yourself differently
When you are in a productive head space you think differently. You need to challenge your thoughts and develop a productive mindset. What is the main difference? A productive person doesn’t think along the lines of…
‘Oh no, I have got so much to do. What am I going to do?’
‘I am so stressed. I can’t think straight’
‘I am so overwhelmed. I wish this…or that…’
I need to do x and y. What is the best way for me to get everything done?
What is causing the stress? What needs to change so that I manage this situation better?
What can I do to improve this, considering the current circumstances?
The words and phrases you use immediately empower you or they don’t; they either make you feel better or more stressed. The words you use, ‘your self talk,’ is pivotal to everything in life, because you always act on them, whether they support you or not.
How could you change the way you are thinking to be more productive and empowered?
Don’t get me wrong- I’m first in the Q to have a canary. Helloooo Anxiety! I will worry about the worrying and then some more until I shut down. However if I can nip it in the bud pretty early I tend not to go to defcon 5. Even if I do go into full meltdown, sometimes its the kick in the arse I need to get productive again.
3. Make it fit!
Time management supports productivity; they go hand-in-hand. Most people often overlook the fact that time management is not a cookie cutter though, and what might suit you won’t necessarily work for someone else.
You need to take the advice given (including my well meaning articles) and then adjust it to your situation specifically. Think about clothes shopping: sometimes the suit doesn’t fit and you need to make adjustments and tweaks so that it fits your body perfectly.The same is true with time management and being more productive. You need to personalise what you read to your needs. I can wax lyrical about what works, but I don’t have a partner, or kids or a million other things. So what will work for me, won’t be any good to you if there’s a tiny human bellowing and bawling on your floor.
If some tips and techniques don’t work for you, instead of throwing in the towel, find a way to adjust them to suit your situation. Otherwise, it is like wanting to get healthier but resisting a change in lifestyle. You can’t avoid it, so if you don’t like it, adjust it to suit your specific needs and make it work for you.
4. Identify your time thieves
We all have time thieves, but most of us don’t even know what they are. If you can identify your biggest time thieves, the activities or situations that throw you off course, distract or interrupt you, or the bad habits that keep you from performing better, you will improve your results much more quickly.
Social media- I go on for five minutes for a brain break and suddenly I’m googling recipes or engaged in witty conversation with someone I’ve not seen in years. Not Helpful!
If you try to study and apply different techniques, and you ignore your current thieves, it will all be a bit pointless. If you just aim to change one of your worst time management habits, you will change your results immediately.
Think about one thing, that if you changed right now, would have the biggest impact influence on your productivity. Write this down, think about what causes or contributes to this and what your solution will be moving forward.
Don’t forget to put results before comfort, if that is what you really want. Most people give up without ever knowing that they really can achieve their goals, meet their objectives and transform their lives!
So stop reading this and go get some shit done….. Although it is Sunday maybe take a day and start tomorrow. 🙂