Does your to-do list Outrun you? From The Designer
We all have those to-do lists that get a little bit out of control, we start with the best intentions, writing down everything we want to achieve and by the time Sunday rolls around, we didn't accomplish even half of that list and immediately we beat ourselves up over it. As an entrepreneur or self employed individual, trying to balance this work load and enjoy our personal life can sometimes feel impossible. But I'm here to remind you that it's ok to rest, it's ok to take a step back from that to-do list and give yourself a pat for just taking ONE step in the direction you want to go.
If your looking for a few tips to help cut through that feeling and get your real work done, then try out these tips:
1. Do the big task first!
The biggest thing on your to do list always feels the most daunting, but if you tackle that first, you won't only feel like you've accomplished something, but you'll most likely feel more inspired to keep going. Conquering your big task first helps you work with your willpower instead of against it, and this is quite powerful!
2. Get in the mood!
After a weekend or holiday can sometimes feel the hardest to get back in to 'work mode' so get yourself in the mood! Now everyone may have different rituals for 'getting in the work mood' but try playing some of your favourite tunes, sing it out, dance it out, get that energy flowing.
Some may get more inspired to work by clearing your space, add some green and some life to your office.. it could just inspire you to spend some more time in there. I've personally got heaps of plants in my office, some quotes sitting on my desktop, and a picture of myself and my hubby. This inspires me to work hard, so I can continue creating an amazing life for us.
3. Clear your head!
This is a powerful tool to help you 'get in the mood' If your like me, and have a lot going on, it's important to take the time and clear your head. If you feel in a funk, can't get anything done.. give yourself an hour, go for a walk, go for a run, go for a swim.. meet a girlfriend at an inspiring outdoor cafe, sometimes just talking it out can help you refocus on what's important. And plus, fresh air works wonders!
4. Work in a new space!
I find this quite helpful when my to-do list overwhelms me and I can't seem to get anything done. Switch up your work space, whether that's re arranging your office (which I do at least once a month, but that's just me!) I find a fresh, new space encourages and inspires me.
Bring your work to a cafe or a place that inspires you. Even for just 60-90 minutes, I always seem to get more work done when I incorporate this in to my work week!
5. Star the to-do list!
Over time you may notice the same things constantly on your to-do list that you just aren't getting done, and sometimes this is because our to-do list doesn't reflect what we actually need to get done. So check in to your to-do list a couple times a day, pop big stars beside the tasks you know you need to get done.. and take off the tasks that are irrelevant.
6. Reward yourself for doing it!
I don't mean treat yourself to a massage every single time you complete things off your to-do list (although that would be nice) but treat yourself when you complete your big tasks, some of the time we don't get these daunting tasks done because there's no reward, or fun in doing it. But try treating yourself with something you love doing.. you'll feel accomplished and motivated.
7. Set yourself up for success!
As entrepreneurs and self starters, we have big dreams, and sometimes their bigger and scarier than we can sometimes focus on right now. I'm all for continually striving and reaching for your goals, but don't set yourself up for failure.. if week after week the goals on your to-do list are to far fetched, you won't ever accomplish them. Break them down into smaller more achievable goals.
8. Just do it!!
Probably the simplest and easiest form of getting anything done.. instead of complaining about what you need to do, or should be doing.. just do it!!
Pick one task, and do it. Pick another and do it. Focus on one task at a time and focus on it until it's done! You may surprise yourself at how well this simple approach can work!
"Your discipline dictates your success."