I sometimes joke that what most of my clients need from me is to just help them to focus. But there's a whole bunch of truth there.
Focusing on getting the important things done is one of the biggest challenges for my clients. There are many reasons why, and here are the top 5:
Shiny squirrel syndrome: There's a new idea, a new person to meet, a new software to try out, a new....something.
The 'this'll-just-take-a-minute' syndrome: There are always the little, seemingly inconsequential things that, if you can just get them out of the way, you'll have time to focus.
The 'I-don't-want-to' complex: Avoidance at its best.
The 'I-don't-have-time' syndrome: Running from one thing to the next. A close relative of shiny squirrel syndrome.
Everything else: There's stress, hunger, and tiredness, for starters.
If this sounds at ALL familiar, you're in good company. My own very unscientific research has proven that most small business owners suffer from some form of lack of focus, present company included.
Here are a few things that have worked for me and some other people I know. Maybe they'll work for you, too.
Tip #1 - Time Block
This is a huge one because grouping similar things together make it easier to accomplish things because your brain is not jumping from one thing to the next. When I block time in my schedule to work on content and writing, I end up in a groove, and I get more done.
Even better, block the same time every day to get yourself accustomed to having that time set aside. You might even start to look forward to it!
Tip #2 - Use a Pomodoro Timer
If you happened to have blocked several hours as one block of time, yay, you! However, our human brains need mini breaks, and believe it or not, those breaks can actually make you MORE productive.
When I use this tool, not only do I get my business tasks done, but I usually end up with a clean house by the end of the day, 5 minutes at a time.
Tip #3 - Know your rhythm
You know yourself best. Determine what time of day you are most likely to get things done. Make THAT your time to block.
Tip #4 - Figure out the 'What'
It's all well and good to block the time and be ready to work in sub-blocks. But if you don't have your list together, that time is wasted, and you'll be off chasing the next shiny squirrel.
There is a book called Leveling Up that talks about the concept of assigning a value to tasks. Is it a $10 task? $100? $1,000? How about $10,000?
If you're a business owner, you should not be spending time on $10 or $100 tasks. Outsource, delegate, and do what ya gotta do, but let someone else do those so you can focus on the $1,000 and $10,000 tasks.
Tip #6 - Prioritize your Most Valuable 'Whats'
Lastly, now that you've figured out what YOU need to do, it's time to figure out what to do first.
"The secret of making progress is getting started." – Mark Twain
I hope you've found these tips helpful for finding your focus.
If you're the type of person that benefits from talking something through, schedule a complimentary strategy session.