Archive for June, 2015



To-Do ListThere is always plenty to do. Many people keep those things in their head instead of actually making a list. That’s where they make the first mistake. The place that things on your daily agenda reside shouldn’t be your head. You’ve got to get it in writing, so make your list. Only the things that are deserving of your time should end up on your to-do list. The same things goes for your calendar. Getting through your to-do list can be challenging, but if life is going to work you’ve got to get through it. There are a few key points that will help you establish a new foundation and get through your list daily with ease.

I believe that productivity is all about perspective. What I see is that people automatically hand over their personal power because of how they learned about time. They pick up the linear view where time is limited to a set number of hours and there’s never enough of it to go around. Seeing things through the Time Wielder’s™ lens, time is conceptual with no past, present or future. There is only “now”. Time never runs out because it doesn’t exist. People struggle because they’re trying to manage something that doesn’t even exist. When you approach things from this angle, everything shifts.

Productivity is not a one size fits all kind of thing. It’s individual. It’s time to ditch that mentality and the behavior that goes along with it. You have to look at your personality, or what I call your Productivity Persona™. Who you are, how you operate and relate to time has everything to do with how you get things done. Incorporating that when you start looking at how to achieve a higher level of productivity, can make the difference between whether or not you’re effective.

Ideally, you want to be at a point where you are scheduling your priorities, instead of prioritizing your schedule. What I mean by that is if you know your priorities ahead of time, when tasks hit your calendar or to-do list they already have an assigned priority.  If you get your priorities straight and assign them to your projects and goals, every task related to each of your projects and goals will have the same priority level. If they’re already set, you don’t have to play with your list and decide the priority level of everything on your agenda.

Making the shift in your perspective, taking the personal approach to productivity and knowing and working according to your priorities will make you more effective, keep undeserving and irrelevant things off of your to-do list so that you can work your way through your list, completing the tasks at hand and end up with a life that works.

 


blank calendar reminder

blank calendar reminder

I’ve always talked about the importance of routine or ritual in your day, especially your morning ritual or routine. That sets the tone for your day. Having a weekly routine is just as important. Having a routine will make the difference between you just going through your days and actually getting the end results you’re looking for. After all, that’s what it’s about.

Following a pattern sets you up so you always know what’s next and as a result to be better prepared for what is coming up, so you’re improving when it comes to being ready and having what you need in place. Once you do things repeatedly, you develop the mindset for being more efficient and you discover how to improve on your processes and how to do things more quickly.

Having your routine in place also makes it easier for you and your team to schedule additional things, so you start to create fluid movement within your week that allows for increased momentum. If you look at the things you do on a regular basis, you will see that there are things you do every week.  You may have something that should be getting done weekly, but it’s not happening because you haven’t got your schedule in place or you’re operating off of what you have in your head.

It’s just as important to have a structure for your week as it is to have a daily one. Start by making a list of the things that have to be done every week. Figure out what days and times work best for each activity that you list and get it in your calendar. You might find that something comes along that will call for a change in the day you do something, so make the shift accordingly.

Establish your weekly routine, setting up your days based upon what works for you. Remember, productivity is personal, so take the concept and make it fit you like your favorite pair of shoes. Get it in place and stick with it. It will help you become more efficient. You’ll also find that you have more control of your time with a regular routine in place. Over time your routine will contribute to your increased level of productivity.

 

Email Overload


E mail concept Modern Laptop andThere are so many people who struggle with inbox woes daily. It’s not uncommon for people to have upwards of 3000 pieces of email in their inbox and a lot of them aren’t even read. Sometimes it seems like there’s just no way to get a handle on it, but I promise you, there is.

Right now, go to your inbox and look to see exactly how many emails are in your inbox. You might cringe, maybe you don’t even want to look, but just go take a peek. You have to know how bad the problem is before you can take steps to resolve it, so go look.

With technology getting better and better and people becoming more reliant upon it and since it’s always readily available, email it seems, is here to stay. So that means that you have to get a grip and gain the upper hand. If you don’t it will be and will stay out of control. An overloaded inbox is a form of electronic clutter and it can get just an out of hand and be just as much of an issue as physical clutter in a space.

So what do you do to start the process of gaining control and eliminating email overload? Go back to your inbox and take inventory. What’s there? Ezines or newsletters you signed up for but haven’t read; emails that you’ve read but kept because they have useful information or attachments that you need?

If there are lists you subscribed to because you wanted particular information and you got it and used it, or didn’t, it’s time to unsubscribe from those lists. If the information is still of value to you, meaning that you can and will use it, save it in a document, bookmark the link or if you use Evernote save it there and keep it moving. Same thing goes for those precious attachments you’ve been holding onto via email. Download them to an appropriate folder and delete the email.

Once those things are gone, look to see what else is there and more importantly WHY it’s there. Get rid of the obsolete things and if there are emails you need to archive, create folders for them and start the drag and drop process. Keep it up until you’ve cleaned it up.

Once you’ve cleaned up your inbox, create some rules for yourself and some new habits. When you check email read, reply, download, archive and delete. Set up filters and related folders for email from lists you want to stay subscribed to so those emails go directly to their designated folders. You can do the same for emails related to particular clients or projects you’re working on. If your inbox is really overloaded it might take a few weeks to get things under control, but it can be done.

 

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