Tag Archive: messy desk



Unproductive Road SignIt’s easy to be caught up in the “norm” and go through your days winging it when it comes to getting things done. There are a few things that are clear indicators that you need help getting it together so you can get it done. I’m going to share five with you here.

  • The first sign is you’re confused about what to work on or to do and when. If you’re finding yourself challenged when it comes to knowing which of the many things on your plate to focus on, your productivity is impaired. When this is the experience you’re having, you find yourself here on a regular basis and waste a lot of time trying to figure out what to do. Here it’s about learning how to prioritize then sticking to those priorities.
  • The second sign is continually putting things off. How many things are you procrastinating on right now? If you don’t know, make a list of all the things that you keep putting off then ask yourself why you think you keep pushing back the time to get it done. The real reason is going to be much deeper and you have to do some digging to find it, but this is the first step.
  • Sign number three…you’re easily sidetracked and chase the BSOs (bright shiny objects). You start out working on something and then something else pops into your mind. Something that you forgot about, maybe something that’s due soon or a new idea. Instead of continuing to work on the task at hand you follow that thought, and for a long time, totally forgetting about what you were doing. Later you remember what you abandoned or worse, you don’t realize what you’ve done until you go to close your laptop or clean your desk at the end of the day.
  • The fourth sign is a disorganized office or forever messy desk. You can’t find anything and don’t have the space to work and that definitely wastes your time. It also creates a heavy energy in the space that doesn’t make it easy to get things done. That messy desk isn’t helping you either. I’m not talking about your desk being in disarray while you’re working, I’m talking about a desk with paper and other items that seem to have made your desk a permanent home.
  • The final sign is that you run out of day before you run out of things to do. You’re consumed by all that there is to do and it’s got control. You dive in and before you know it, it’s time for that meeting, or worse yet, the day is over, and it’s the pattern you fall into every day. So then it becomes necessary to add some extra hours to your work day just so you can get it all done, which has your personal and family life suffer. It’s a vicious cycle. One that you’ve got to bring to an end. It is possible to get it all done and have a life too.

 


As a society, we waste a lot of things including time. Most of the things we waste we have in excess, but not time.  We each get the same amount of time each day and once it’s gone it’s gone for good.

How much of your time are you wasting?  Do you honestly know where your time is going?  Are you wasting the estimated 2 hours of time that most people waste every day?  That 2 hours every day can add up pretty fast.  The truth of the matter is that most people don’t really know where their time is actually going every day.   So, how do you know you’re wasting a significant amount of your precious time?  Here are a few indicators:

  • Messy desk, cluttered work space, things not filed
  • Not being able to find things
  • Missing, being late for or often rescheduling appointments
  • Arriving to meetings unprepared
  • Tired and/or unable to concentrate

If these indicators are present, it’s time to get the clutter off of your desk, file things in an orderly manner and start planning ahead of time.  It’s also time to get a hold on your time.  Start by logging your time each day.  From the beginning of your work day to the end, log how you’re spending your time including the time that you spend on the phone, time online, and everything else that you do during the course of your day.

Do this for about a week then look back at your time log.  What do you see?  You might see that you spent 4 hours on a major project, but you know that 30 minutes of that time was spent looking for something related to it before you could even get started.  Maybe phone calls lasted longer than necessary and instead of it taking 15 minutes to make a couple of quick phone calls, you spent 30 or 45.  Perhaps you jumped into your inbox first thing in the morning (not a good habit by the way) and when you looked up you had spent over an hour and hadn’t gotten anything done.

Look at the things that are sucking up your time and create solutions for them.  That might mean organizing your office space and or files so that you can locate things when you need them or setting a couple of designated times to check your email each day instead of diving in first thing and going back whenever your email notification goes off.  As you look at how you’re spending your time, look to see if things are balanced.  You might see that you’re spending more time on administrative things and not so much time on your marketing.  Once you know where your time is going you know where to start to gain control of it and manage it well.

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