[Gina is making her way back home after a heavenly almost-four-weeks of cruising and relaxing and generally galavanting all round Europe. She’ll be back, relaxed and ready to roll, next week. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy one of my favorite topics for building your Dream Business — with Finish Agent, of course! Denise www.SmallSparksBigResults.com]
When your to-do list is as long as your arm, yet the warm summer days are singing their siren song, there’s one sure way to get your most important projects done, and still have time to enjoy the summer sun. Work a little bit every day, consistently, and then you’ll be more relaxed, and can take time to play.
I know, I know, this sounds crazy. But there’s a boatload of research that shows that people who work in small bits, very consistently, are more creative, more productive, and less stressed.
So in the face of that mile-long to-do list, how can you be consistent? You just need to do a few simple things:
1. Focus on ONE — Yes, I know you have a million things to do. I’m not saying you can’t work on as many as you want. What I am saying is that the most successful entrepreneurs understand that focus is crucial. So they make sure that they have one primary project at the top of their list, and that at least one small task gets done, on that specific project, every weekday.
2. Use a Trigger / Catalyst – I’d be willing to bet that you have at least some routine in your day, yes? For example, you get up at a certain time, you shower, get dressed, then maybe exercise, or meditate, or have breakfast. Those things are easy for you because you’ve created a habit. And you can play off of that routine to add on yet another small, but very potent new habit — working for a short time, each day, on your most important business project. Figure out at what point in your day (preferably morning) that you could spend 15, 20, or maybe even 30 minutes working on your most important business project. Right after you shower? As you’re drinking your morning tea or coffee? Think of something you rarely miss doing, and hitch this new habit to that existing habit.
3. Start Small – One of the most important parts of creating a consistent habit is to ease into it. If you suddenly declare “I’m going to get fit. I’ll go the gym every day for 1 1/2 hours!” I don’t know about you, but it would take about 5 minutes for me to find an excuse not to go the gym. On the other hand, if you say “I need to get fit. I’ll start by walking 10 minutes on the treadmill while I read in the morning,” then your chances of success just increased significantly. Never underestimate the power of small.
4. Leverage Your Willpower — Remember that willpower is an exhaustible resource. So take advantage of that fact and do one short work session early in your day, while your willpower reserves are at their highest.
Just think of this as going on a long road trip. If you’re going from San Francisco to New York and you drive only 5 miles a day, in the right direction, at least you are making progress. If you sit at home, doing nothing, in one week you’ll still be sitting on your couch. On the other hand — if you drive 5 miles a day, every week day, at least you’ll be 25 miles closer to your destination. Every little bit counts. And Consistency is Queen.
Do you have other ways that you create consistent action in your business? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!