Do you ever feel like there's too much to do ... and not enough time? When I'm coaching Executives or coaching myself, I am reminded of this fact: "We all have the same amount of time. It's what WE DO WITH IT that's important." Be it Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Richard Branson ... they all have the same amount of time as we do ... however a key distinction for me is revealed in the CHOICES they make about WHAT they focus on and HOW they use their time. Driven by dreams and aspirations for building The Happiness Centre and other exciting business projects, I can sometimes feel overwhelmed with the tasks 'to do' to accomplish my goals. It's never a question of capability .... because I know I can 'do' the 'tasks' ... but my topic of discussion with my Coach this morning was: What new thinking could replace the 'haziness' of task-overwhelm with a renewed clarity of priority-driven outcomes again? It was worth my time today to re-learn how to better PRIORITISE and use my valueable time (once it's gone, time is GONE!). Read these insider tips from my current Business Coach, Alistair Schreiber (one heck of a smart guy when it comes to strategy and finances in business and I love his South African 'get on with it' frankness!!) >>>>
Here was my refresher course today on Prioritising:
- Write a list of everything I think I have to do. Get it out of my head, onto paper (I use Excel to manage my projects and tasks). Entreprenuers can easily fall into the trap of thinking they have to 'do it all' themselves. When in fact, SMART entrepreneurs leverage other people's time (OPT), other people's money (OPM) and other people's skills (OPS).
- Categorise each project or output (e.g. Sales, Marketing, Finance, Admin, Personal etc)
- Prioritise each project or output - putting a higher priority on things that will impact cash-flow or are urgent and important for growing the business (NOT urgent for other people!)
- Simplify: Break the highest priority tasks down into smaller pieces of work, so it feels easier and more achieveable.
- Question each smaller piece of work and write notes next to each: Does this really have to be done? How do I feel about this? What am I running away from about this task? Which ones do I not want to do? Who else could do this? Who could help? Who knows more about this than me? Who is better at this than me? For whom would this be a joy / gift / opportunity for them to express their potential? (Elance is a great place for virtual delegation) How else could I accomplish this? Essentially, this questioning approach is similar to the Do, Dump or Delegate? method for each smaller action.
- Choose what I WILL do and BY WHEN ... be wholeheartedly in 'choice' about actions
- Build in accountability (e.g. As a result of our Coaching Conversation, my agreement is to email my Coach, Alistair, the Excel spreadsheet by end of today; Complete what I set as realistic outcomes for today; Review in my 1:1 tele-session tomorrow afternoon with my Coach). You could email a collegue or friend, and ask if you can check in with them in 24 hours.
- Get on with it. DROP ANY INTERNAL EXCUSES
Like any new habit it will take some daily discipline to get into the groove (10 mins each morning should do it, I reckon!)
This is one healthy habit I intend to get REALLY good at, with the assistance of my Coach because it directly impacts my needs and desires for:
- time freedom - less for me to do, better quality of my inputs, grow faster with help of others
- mental freedom - less 'incompletions' whirring away on my internal hard drive, smarter v. harder
- financial freedom - faster business results using smarter strategies, revenue trumps 'busy-ness'
Do you have any tips on Prioritising to share?
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