The Single Most Important Thing to do to Get More Stuff Done!
What is the single biggest excuse people use to not do things they say they want to do?
Wait for it… (No pun intended.)
“I don’t have time.”
We’re about to blow that excuse away. But first, a question:
Why is being productive important in the first place?
- You take the reins of your life. When you are in the driver’s seat of your own life, you stop being a victim and start being a victor of your life.
- Finding ease in the chaos. Stressing about what your to-do list simply stops you from doing what you have to do.
- The more you do, the more you give. The more time you spend doing things that make you who you are, the more you give to yourself and to the world.
The number one thing you need to do to manage your life is to stop complaining. The moment you stop complaining, you take responsibility. And the more you take responsibility, the more you own what you do. There’s a major difference in thinking you have to do something versus thinking you choose to do something.
You have three simple choices in any given situation:
- Complain: Staying in a situation and complaining is actually the easiest thing to do. It’s also often a permanent and painful option.
- Change: Change involves leaving a situation altogether or reworking where you currently are in that situation. It can either be a permanent and joyful change or temporarily joyful if you continue to rely on external factors for happiness and fulfillment.
- Align: Aligning with a situation requires reworking your mind, beliefs, meanings and associations about a particular thing to take ownership for what you are doing.
So, it’s pretty simple. If you want to do more, stop complaining and start doing.
Once you’ve decided to do the most important thing and quit complaining, you can move on to these 10 practical tips to maximize your productivity:
- Check the right boxes. Being productive is not simply a matter of checking boxes, but checking the right ones.
- Eliminate distractions. These days we’re trained to think we’re being more productive the more we multitask. Wrong! Focus on the task at hand and eliminate distractions. Here are a few starting points.
- Avoid checking notifications, email or phone
- Delete ALL push notifications
- Be present, not virtually somewhere else
- Single-task, rather than multi-task
- Find music that focuses you
- Do something that matters
- Prioritize a few important items. Spend one hour Monday morning for weekly planning.
- Schedule activities. Relay on the power of scheduling something to make it happen.
- Schedule space. Schedule extra space in case tasks or projects take longer than expected.
- Measure and adjust. Evaluate old schedules or habits and make appropriate adjustments.
- Implement efficiency. Focus on your strengths and solicit help with your weaknesses.
- Stay accountable. Join a group or make a commitment to make you more accountable.
- Celebrate the small things! Shift your focus from what needs to be done to what has already been done.
- Balance rather than burn out. Think about all the different areas of your life that matter and balance accordingly.
- Just be.
One last thought. In our quest to be productive, let’s not get so caught up in the doing that we forget about the being. Because it’s the moments that we stop, notice, and appreciate that bring long-term fulfillment to the precious time we have on this planet.
[Related: Create Change in Your Life and get unstuck by Karen Martin.
Chelsea Dinsmore is the Chief Inspiration Officer of Live Your Legend, a movement that’s dedicated to changing the world by helping people to find and do work they love and surround themselves with the people who make it possible. This article originally appeared as a two-part blog series on liveyourlegend.net.