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Let’s talk about being more productive. Why do we want this? Why do we want to be more productive in our business?
It’s definitely not so we can cram more stuff into our life. It’s not so that we can just fill the plate even fuller and even more heavy and with more things.
No, we want this so that we can make space to breathe. We can make space to be, so that we can be the present and intentional spouse, parent and business owner.
I figured out a long time ago that I can be everything, but I cannot do everything. I am a mom and I’m a wife and I have a team of eight employees. I have all of my clients and my customers. I have my friends, my extended family, my home, my health, and in all of those things I wanna be able to show up at my best.
The way that I accomplish this, the way that I work to get to be the best version of me, is by being incredibly intentional with my time.
I’m gonna give you five things you can do in five minutes a day that will massively increase your productivity, your ability to stay present, to stay focused, to not have all the squirrel moments, to be a high performer. There is so much power in these five things. And so we’re gonna go over ’em today.
1. YOU NEED TO KNOW WHAT YOUR BIG GOAL IS
Once you know what your big goal is, I want you to write it down every single morning. It feels monotonous, but this should take like 10, 15 seconds. You’re just going to remind yourself what your big goal is. You probably are going to put it on a post-it note that’s right on your computer, and then you are going to rewrite it every single day.
This has a powerful effect. It brings us back to focus. This can be a very short term goal or it can be huge and big. This allows you to review your big goal every single day, and it brings you back to center. It makes you more intentional because the first thing you did that day was say, “oh yeah, this is why I’m here. This is why I showed up.”
2. TAKE A MINUTE AND WRITE DOWN WHAT YOU ARE GRATEFUL FOR
We work better and we are more productive when we are in a positive state. Research has shown that when we are in a positive state of mind, we are more productive than when we are in negative one.
That should be obvious, but it also applies to being in just a neutral state as well. We don’t work as well. We are not as productive. So up that productivity and just take a minute and write down a few things that you are grateful for.
3. COME UP WITH YOUR DAILY FIVE
Honestly, this could be anywhere between three and five things, but these are the three to five things that you are going to accomplish today that are going to move you towards that big goal that you wrote.
One idea I really want to push is that we need to stop having never ending to do lists. A never ending to do list that has 500 things is going to make it so that you never get to feel accomplished because you don’t ever get to the end of it.
Now here’s what’s beautiful. Those three to five things, hopefully they’re pretty manageable. These are things you should be able to get done in a day. I am hoping a lot of times that I can get them done in a few hours and I know I’ve moved the needle. I know I have made progress. I can be done right now. And I’m okay.
4. ONE BOLD ACTION TO MOVE YOU TOWARD YOUR GOAL
Now of those three to five things, you are going to pick the number one, circle it, square it. I put it on the top in my number one space. This is the thing. This is the bold action that is going to move you towards your goal.
This is the “if I get nothing else done, so help me, this is gonna be the first thing I get done” thing.
I say this because we have a habit of looking at our days as if everything is going to go according to plan. That doesn’t happen that often though, right? Interruptions show up in your day. Things that you were not expecting or things you were not planning for, happen. You need to start stepping into your day as if things will not go according to plan.
How does that change how you approach the day? If you knew that interruptions were going to happen, what would that shift for you?
For me, I would start with the most important thing. I would get that done so when chaos does show up, it’s okay because I know I did that number one thing that is gonna work me towards my goal.
I can’t tell you how much that one single step can change your growth. If we make the shift to, “I know that an interruption is gonna show up today. So therefore I am going to plan for that. I’m gonna do the most important things first.”
Now we’re ready. We can handle it. And if they don’t come then that day just went into high performance overdrive.
5. TIME BLOCKING (BUT WITH A DIFFERENT TWIST)
I look at time blocking differently than a lot of people do. So let me explain what time blocking is for me. When I think of time blocking, I’m looking at those three to five things that I wrote down and I say, okay, how long do I think each one will take?
As an example, I look at number one and I think that’s gonna take 15 minutes. I look at number two and I think that’s gonna take 45 minutes. I look at number three and that’s probably gonna take 90 minutes. Number four is probably gonna take 45 minutes. Number five, probably five minutes.
I add all those up and I put them into my time block. I have that Block One is going to that number one item. Then I go through and add all the rest in. Let’s say I’m starting at 8:00 AM. So task one is from 8:00 – 8:15, and I write it out. Number two is going to take 45 minutes. 8:15-9:00. Third is gonna be 90 minutes, so it will last from 9:00 to 10:30. Then I’ll take a 15 minute break, do some squats, walk around, check on the kids, switch the laundry, whatever needs to be done. Set a timer for that 15 minutes.
Now onto block four. This one is going to take me 30 minutes. So now I’m at 10:45 to 11:15. And then block five. Let’s say that one’s gonna take me 60 minutes. I’m at 11:15 to 12:30. Now I can stop for lunch or maybe stop for the day.
By doing my time blocking this way I can go through and get all those big things done first, before I ever went into my inbox, before I went into my DMs, or my social media. I got to these big things that are going to move me toward my big goal done first.
There are two final parts in the daily planner printable that I want to mention. One is the questions: If this was the second time I was living this day, what would I do differently? And the second one is: Who can I show appreciation to today?
#1: You need to know what your big goal is.
#2: Write down what you are grateful for.
#3: Come up with your daily five.
#4: Take one bold action to move you toward your goal.
#5: Utilize project-based time blocking.
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