You actually can get more done in less time, and I'm about to tell you how.
One of the things I have struggled with since taking my business independent, has been time management. I'm no longer just a writer. I'm a marketer, a promoter, a bookkeeper, a designer, a blogger, a meme maker, and a social media expert. Here's the thing: I love every bit of it. I am having a blast, and the new skills I'm learning fill me with pride and self confidence. There is nothing I need to do that I cannot teach myself how to do well. I love that, love every part of running my business. Because of that, though, I've been gradually sliding back into old habits of workaholism. So here are the steps I'm taking to change that.
Plan Several Unplugged Hours Each Day
The best way to help me get away from my various screens, is to plan what I'll do with those screen-free hours and write it down. Here are some of the things on my daily to do lists.
Spend at least an hour taking a brisk walk or jog
Spend time cleaning & primping my beautiful home
Make my bed every morning and do my dishes every evening
Meditate for fifteen minutes
Spend time working on my lawn, garden, & landscaping
Turn off all devices at 5 pm & leave them off till morning
Planning and Writing it Down
My most production-enhancing tool to date is a really great planning calendar broken down by days, weeks, and months. At the beginning of each month, I note the major things I want to get done during that month. I revisit that page often. At the beginning of each week, I jot down the major things I want to do for that week. I glance at my month's worth of goals and decide which of those will be this week's tasks, and list them. At the beginning of each day, I take my first cup of delicious coffee and sit on the back deck with the sun shining and the birds singing raucously. I look at the goals I've chosen to tackle that week, and decide which parts of those I feel like taking on today. I jot them down, all of them, both the personal goals and the business goals. At the end of each month, each week, and each day, I go back over the things I intended to do, and the things I succeeded in doing. I never realized how much I was actually accomplishing until I started doing this regularly. It changed my perspective and made me appreciate myself like never before. It's very important for me not to get down on myself for things I didn't finish, and instead focus on celebrating those I did. The things still on the list just get added to the next day/week/month. This method is easy, joyful, positive, and somehow, it has increased my productivity several times over.
I Never force myself do a task I dread
I do exactly the thing that appeals to me the most in the moment. Since I've started implementing this counter-intuitive advice, I get more done in less time, and the quality of what I produce is through the roof. That doesn't mean the tasks I dread never get done. It means I get to spend my days in a state of alignment, joy and bliss, where work isn't work at all, but fun. As a result of that, I will either come into alignment with the task I've been dreading and wake up one morning eager to dive into it, or something will come into my experience that makes the hated task unnecessary. Someone else appears in my life to do it for me, or some new condition comes into being that renders it moot. And whichever of those things happen, the timing of them is always perfect. I love the way that works. "Do what you love and the world will follow," is the best business advice I ever got. Not every day fits into this schedule. Things come up. Some days get away from you. Sometimes life seems to be conspiring to keep you away from your desk. On those days, you should be grateful. Life is meant to be lived, not worked through.
I Swear This Truly Works
Spend more time doing what you love, and less time with your nose to the grindstone, your shoulder to the wheel, your butt in the chair. Work four hours a day and then spend the rest of the day playing. Work two hours a day, and take weekends off. Work less, play more. Enjoy every part of your job. If you're not enjoying it, you're not doing it right. Stop and do something that feels more fun.
I promise you, you will get more work done in less time, and it will be better work. Higher quality. When you are living a life of joy and bliss and fun, you are in tune with your Higher Self. The ideas you receive will be truly inspired. Everything you touch will turn to gold.