Feeling like you need to boost your productivity?
So these tips are for me as much as they are for you.
"How to be more productive" is a frequent googleable problem people are looking to solve, and it's no wonder. Research shows that productivity is at the top of the list for what it takes to be fulfilled at work. And, your ability to be productive is up against some pretty big distractions.
The best way to kick into gear is to ask three questions that start with three simple words: What? Who? When?
Here's how it goes:
1. What is your mission?
Focus comes from clarity of your mission. What are you up to? What are you building? What are you creating? If you are feeling stuck, declare out loud what you are here to do. Don't try and create a tagline or some canned language that sounds good but doesn't get your engines going. Your mission should be based on your future vision and big enough to make you want to throw up ;)
For example, my answer is: My mission is to build a one of a kind personal development company that gives people the tools to be masterfully happy in their work.
2. Who do you do it for?
Your mission is always connected to people. And every mission solves a problem for someone. Who is that?
During my yoga teacher training with Baron Baptiste, I learned this very important lesson: SPEAK TO ONE TO EACH AND EVERYONE. While teaching yoga, I felt this in action. I would simply direct my cues, inspiration, and motivation towards one person in the room. I watched my words land in her body. What didn't work was to speak to the masses with the hopes that it would stick. One person would be the access to every person in the room.
I heard this same lesson in a writing course I took - write as though you are writing a letter to one person. This helped me get over my fears of being for everyone all the time. I'm not, nor is my service. But it's for someone! And when I write, I write for her. I picture her in my mind and I think, "this will be helpful for her" and I keep going.
By focussing on solving the problem for just one person your work becomes available to everyone.
3. When to do it?
Work is all about creating a map of priorities. Now that you've remembered your mission and you know who it's for, ask "what is it time for now?" Productivity relies on a sequence of events. What do you need to do first, then second etc. One trick I use often is to get quiet and ask myself "how many things is it time for me to do now?" Then, whatever number that pops into my head I write down. Only after I write the number down do I start to make my list.
You can do anything, just not everything.
Here's a fun tip: put all your "to do's" on post-it notes. Then on a whiteboard or even your desk, make a timeline measured in days, months or years. Place your post it's under each time marker. You will quickly see that you can't crowd your time. Create a visual roadmap to where you want to go. The key is to keep your mission and your person top of mind.