Happy New Year!
New Year; the time of changes and resolutions. Often we think that in order to achieve more, we need to do more and you might find that your to-do lists are increasingly with your resolutions. However more and more I’m realising that this way of working is counter productive- we just get overwhelmed, become less productive and get stuck in the maintenance of day to day. Don’t even talk to me about admin…
Perhaps as a New Year Resolution this year instead of creating more things to do, you start to focus on what really matters to you and create the space for the actions that will have the biggest impact on your life. By doing this, you can do fewer projects, less in the day, yet become more productive, gain higher satisfaction by doing these things really well and enjoy finishing a project before going on to the next one.
The brain likes achievement and when we have a series of smaller tasks each day that feels mangeable, we are quicker, more effective and increases motivation, especially when you are able to get new goals to your list.
Always feeling like you have too much to do can be very demoralising over time because you will never feel like you are achieving anything, not because you can’t but because there is too much on your list to physically do.
I have created a three stage approach to help you to plan your day, do less but more achieve below:
Here is the breakdown in more detail:
2x essential tasks a day that are going to have the biggest impact – take these two items off your to- do list, this will vary for everyone but perhaps it is to tackle a big piece of work that needs doing, a goal that’s important to you, or something that is causing your worry or that you’ve been procastinating over for some time. Achieving these two essential tasks will give you a really feeling of accomplishment and set you up for the day, because you will know that you’ve done what is really important to you. These are the tasks that ensure progress.
1x wellbeing activity – If you already make a point of working out on a daily basis then make it that, but if not try and get some fresh air, be active or just use it as a time to step away from the essential tasks, I find this one great to do between the two essential tasks as a way of ending one and being ready to start the next with a clear mind and a different perspective. This is your resilience, foundations and replenishment. People often try to skip this, but it’s as essential as the other tasks because it means you are well, happy and balanced. It is both how you don’t burn out, but also how you enjoy your life.
1x maintenance activity – Again this can vary from person to person but ending on this one can be a great way of setting yourself up for the next day, you can look at the to-do list and choose what you need or what to do next. It can also be a great time for life admin for example: paying the bills you need to pay, making that phone call you’ve been meaning to make or perhaps it’s getting on top of emails or the current workload.
While taking this approach it is also important to give yourself time to do relax, replenish, find joy. This will provide you with mental rest allowing you to be creative, find inspiration and get happiness in to your life. It may also be helpful to set time boundaries on your activities and put them into your planner (I have created one for you below to help) This will help you priortise and get into the habit of asking yourself what is really important and focusing your time and energy on those.
Here is to remembering what is important in 2018 and know that you have it within you to create a lifestyle where you can do less and achieve more. Wishing you the happiest 2018 and can’t wait to continue to share this journey together.
There is only success- to be able to spend life in your own way
- Christopher Morley