“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.”
Paul J. Meyer
Have you ever heard the old saying ‘If you want something done, ask a busy person?’ Ever wondered why?
Ever felt stressed out because you never seem to get through all the chores so you can get to the fun stuff?
Or maybe you just do the fun stuff, and try not to remember the chores piling up while you’re supposed to be having fun?
I think we’ve all been there. But I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be like that. There is a way to do more; a ‘how to get sh*t done’ way!
I’m going to share a few ideas that helped me get more done, which I hope you will find useful in getting on top of your life.
Make a list!
Yes, I know it sound too simple, but do you actually do it! (Come on. Be truthful, there’s only you and me here!) Yes, I know, you’re too busy, It’s too simple to work, I’ve heard them all.
Listen, if I’m going to help you at all, then you have to try things my way, not just read this and then forget about it two minutes later. So get a pen and a piece of paper.
Right, let’s get started. First write down all the things you need to do, get done, whatever. And I do mean all. Take as long as you need and get everything down on paper. I’ll be here waiting.
OK, now you see what a lot of junk you’ve been carrying around in your head. Feels better now it’s out of there doesn’t it?
One of the major causes of stress is trying to remember all the things you’re supposed to be worrying about! Now we’ve dealt with that, it’s going to get easier from here on in.
Now that you have your list, let’s take the next step.
I’ll bet that some of the items on the list are pretty important. But if you’ve done your job properly, there are lots of little things that have just been cluttering up your mind. Often, it’s just because there are so many small things that causes the problem.
So let’s start getting on top of this. I want you to go through your list, marking the urgent stuff with an A, the not so important with a B, and the ‘it can wait’ stuff with a C.
Now we’re making progress.
Re-write your list in priority order, with the A items at the top, the B items next, and finally, on the other side of the page, put all the C items, where you can’t see them!
‘I knew it would get difficult’ No, really, it’s not that bad. You just need to stick with it.
The final, crucial step is…
Start with the first item and don’t tackle anything else until it’s done.
Seriously, it’s too easy to cheat, and say ‘I’ll just get a couple of these small things done, then I’ll feel better able to tackle that number one item after that’.
Don’t be tempted. It’s only yourself that you’ll cheat. Only tackle the most important thing on the list, and don’t be tempted to deviate. It’s at the top of the list for a reason, (You put it there!) so deal with it!
Once you’ve dealt with it, put a big line through it, or a big tick, to say ‘Job done’.
Now that feels good, doesn’t it?
It’s a funny thing but by getting that big job out of the way at the start of the day, you’ll actually have much more energy for the rest of the day.
By doing it this way, making your own list, you control your life, and not the other way around.
OK, so that first item is a seriously tough nut to crack. There’s a couple of tricks that can help.
1. How do you eat an elephant?
One slice at a time! Don’t let the size of the problem throw you. Take item one on the list, and, yes, you’ve guessed it, make into a list of smaller jobs that make up the whole, and get started on the most important one.
2. Give yourself a reward
Make yourself a promise that once you’ve finished that job, you’re going to do something you really enjoy. Have a cup of coffee, go for a swim, whatever will get you motivated. But, remember, the reward comes after you finish the job, not before. That’s why your parents paid you for cleaning your room after you did it!
Make your list every morning
So every morning, get into the habit of making your list out. It’s your roadmap to make sure you get where you want to be, when you want to be. You’ll be surprised how much time you now have for having fun. And how much more energy you’ll have when that time comes.
Still not convinced? A recent survey showed that people that make lists are 10 times as likely to go on to great success compared to those that don’t! So why aren’t you making your lists yet? You wanted to know ‘how to get sh*t done’. That’s how!
Good luck, and remember, life is not a rehearsal, so get your work done, and then go have some fun!
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