When I set my intentions for the day I was going to pull together the marketing and sales material for my new product. Come the afternoon, my frustration from the morning had spilled into my mood and hampered that creative part of my brain. Even a trickle of chocolate and coffee could not get it moving!
So, I decided to follow that old line “if you can not beat them, join them” and instead of getting frustrated about my lack of creativity and productivity, EMBRACED IT! And realized that embracing it and going with the flow would be more useful than getting annoyed at me. As my embracing great and my frustration disappeared, I felt much better.
And as I improved my mindset and mood – I felt as if I could tackle something demanding. So I used my task focused mindset on attacking my email – yes, all of it !! I blitzed my inbox, sent folder and every other folder in between. And did I feel great !!
I felt satisfied, proud and as if a HUGE weight had disappeared. I felt in control and my mind felt clear. I realized that I had created a good foundation for a productive day tomorrow. This realization made me feel much better about the ‘wasted’ time I had in the morning.
Then is got me thinking about what do I need to do to create a really productive workspace and mindset so I reduce the downtime as much as possible.
Here are my Top 5 Ways I set myself up for productivity …. try them for yourself
1. Do not Avoid this anymore
Inbox Zero – a great concept by Merlin Mann, to get your email in the box to zero. Everyday. Yes, every day. The brilliant concept behind this is not just to have an empty inbox but knowing that when you have the deal with all of that mail, you free up your brain. You feel clearer and less worried about what might be lurking in that electronic in the box. You may need to take a few hours and be decent and ruthless as you whittle yours in the box to zero.
This added to my productivity because suddenly, I looked forward to getting into my inbox instead of wasting it, and I felt in control. And this feeling of control flowed into other areas.
2. The day before – clear and declutter
At the end of each day, clear the decks. Tidy your desk, make it clear, uncluttered and attractive as possible. You want to walk into your workspace feeling as if you really want to be there.
3. Start with the end in mind
Spend some time reflecting on your business and your goals for the year. Really reconnect with the results you wish to create in your business. And importantly, connect with how good it will feel to actually achieve those goals.
4. Bring the focus to today
Reflecting on the annual goal for your business what does it mean for you today? What must you do to move a step closer to your goal? Are there things lurking at the bottom of your to-do list which you know if you did them, they would propel your business forward?
Stretch yourself and put them at the top of your to-do list today. Make a pact with yourself to do them before you have lunch.
5. Success Stocktake
At the end of each day write down three things you have done well today – three successes you feel have made you productive and moved your business closer to its goal. By doing this simple and fast action, you will start to believe you are productive and this, becoming more productive.
Taking time the day before can really set us up for success the following day. Take 15 minutes before you leave your workspace to set yourself up for success. Chances are you will feel more excited about going into your work and making the day a worthy one.