Imagine you’re leaving for vacation tomorrow. You have a massive list of everything that needs to get done before you can relax and be on your way. There’s packing your suitcase, getting the house clean so you can enjoy coming back to it, making sure all your responsibilities will be covered while you’re gone…you get the gist. And because you’re leaving tomorrow, you have no option but to get it all done today. I know that when I’m in this position, I’m massively productive. In the same amount of hours I had on the previous day, I get 3x the amount of things done, because I don’t have the option to not do what’s on my list of things to get done.
What if we faced every day, trip or no trip, with the same kind of attitude? Can you imagine how much more we could achieve if we filled our to do list and refused to go to bed until every item was checked off? Unfortunately, we often check off a few things and say “Ah, I’ll get to the rest of it tomorrow.” And how often do those same items appear day after day on our to do list until we finally get them done just so we don’t have to write them anymore?
I’d like to share some tips with you that will help increase your productivity in an effort to work each day as if you’re leaving for vacation tomorrow.
- Time block: If I don’t put it in my calendar it doesn’t get done. Sure, I could have a loose list of what needs to get done in my head, but if I want to see those things actually completed, I need to assign each task a time so that I can keep myself accountable and on track. So let’s say for example I block off an hour of time in the morning to be on Facebook. Within that hour, I give myself 10 minutes to wish happy birthdays, 15 minutes to work on our team page, 20 minutes to respond to personal messages, and 15 minutes to go live on my personal page. Every minute is accounted for, and this is important because we all know how much time can be wasted in the black hole of Facebook content. If there is something you truly want to get done in a day, be intentional and set aside the time to do it.
- Delegate: Let’s say you really are leaving on a trip tomorrow. The luggage needs to go in the car, a snack bag needs to be packed, laundry needs to be done, trash taken out, etc. There have been too many times that I’ve tried to do all these things by myself and without fail, it ends in me being mad at my family for not helping, even though I didn’t clearly ask for help. But if I delegate one task per person, upfront and with clarity, everything gets done and I don’t have to be stressed. The same applies to your work. Do what you do well and enjoy doing, and delegate the rest. If we were meant to do everything on our own, we’d be good at everything. I’m not good at tracking expenses, filing taxes, payroll, and the like. My husband happens to enjoy and do a great job on these things. Your talents can balance perfectly with those of the people around you if you can step into your own and delegate based on the strengths of others.
- Front load your day: Momentum creates momentum creates momentum all the way into eternity. The way you start your day pretty much determines the kind of day you are going to have. So if you wake up, lie in bed scrolling Instagram for 30 minutes, skip breakfast and opt for a coffee, your day is going to be a continuation of that energy. If, however, you wake up and move your body with a workout, listen to an uplifting podcast while you’re getting ready, and fuel up with a nutritious breakfast, your day is going to look a lot different. Front load your day with the work and activities that are important to you, and you will find yourself flowing through the demands of your day.
When it comes down to it, the only thing holding you back from being more productive is yourself. You can look at your to do list as non-negotiable or as optional. Find the little tricks and hacks that work for you, such as the ones I’ve outlined above, and then get yourself into that mindset of you have a trip tomorrow and everything needs to get done.
I would love to hear from you!