I’m late, I’m late, for a very important date! …
Most that hear or read that line will instantly imagine the White Rabbit scurrying down the rabbit hole in the Alice in Wonderland story.
Some days, I feel like I’m the White Rabbit, running to the next “thing”, other times I’m Alice, wondering what in the world is going on. This is something that I’ve identified in my own life as on-line noise colliding with our society’s “microwave mentality”. We have more access to information and connections can be made with people from all over the world. Unfortunately, these connections also mean they cover a span of time zones. Your Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn notifications are pinging at all hours.
This behaviour certainly makes you busy. But, is it making you any money? Is it moving you and your business forward? I’m guessing the answer is probably “No”.
We are all falling victim to the shiny object syndrome and our attention is flitting from one project to the next, with nothing of any substance being done on any. Let me share a solution that sounds too simple to work, too good to be true! DON’T MULTI-TASK! Don’t switch from project to project. You’ll get an equal amount of nothing done on all and at the end of the month the same projects that were waiting to be finished will still be there, and they’ve invited their friends.
Here’s how this works – Don’t worry about what day you start a project, start now. Then work on that project until it’s DONE. When finished, move on to the next, wash, rinse, repeat. Yes, you’ll have bits of time between the big projects. Have a list of housekeeping (work, not kitchen) items that you can fit in here. Anything that can be done quickly, doesn’t matter if you finish (you stop when you’re no longer on hold) because every little bit of progress on these teeny tasks are nice. An example of these can be organizing all the odds & sods that are all over your computer desktop and folders. It really doesn’t matter if it ever gets done but once it’s all neat and organized you’ll save HOURS by not having to search around looking or that one file or picture to get the important project completed. These tasks are never so important that you should devote prime time to them but lovely to have them done. The work that pays the bills are the prime-time projects. Don’t forget to keep your focus on what gets you ahead in your business, even if it’s only one step at a time.
The thinking behind this is not new. But this is definitely something that makes sense to me. Starting and stopping multiple tasks adds time to each. Gosh, it’s a feat for me to even remember where I was at in the task the last time. This means that I end up redoing stuff and almost always results in me feeling scattered and rushed. With no time and not enough to show for the time spent.
Let me know what tactic you use for staying on-track!
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