The Art of Getting Stuff Done
If you find yourself procrastinating over priorities or troubled by To Do’s, then the following tips may help.
1) Utilise ‘Wasted Time’ in your day
Identify your wasted time and use it more effectively, eg,
Daily Commute – read books, listen to audiobooks if driving, or do something for self development. Alternatively use this for your facebook / news time ONLY as it’s time constrained.
Half hour before going to bed – clean and tidy and prepare for tomorrow.
2) Set a To Do list
This is an essential way to start the day with all tasks in one place. Once you have your list:
“Coffee Stamp” – Add something that you’ve already achieved and cross it off. It’s a cheat, but like the ‘free’ stamps on your coffee loyalty card, you trick yourself into feeling that you’re already part of the way there.
Know your ABCs - Just like Triage, assess your list as A (Important, Urgent), B (Important, Not Urgent), C (Not Important, Not Urgent). Nail the A’s, progress the B’s and put the C’s off for a rainy day.
Don’t be Superman - How much time do you have in the day and how long does each thing take? There’s nothing more demotivating than feeling like you haven’t got anywhere against your overly ambitious plan.
Address the Unexpected – when the unexpected happens, re-prioritise. Always come back to and revise the list as that makes it stronger and more achievable.
3) Use a Motivation Anchor
This is a clever tool from Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP). Close your eyes for a moment and think of a time when you felt truly motivated (getting your team to the top, setting a PB at the gym, passing an exam or your driving test).
Once you have a time in mind, imagine yourself back in this time, see what you saw, hear what you heard and feel what you felt. Once you have fully immersed yourself in this experience in your mind’s eye, dial up those feelings – make the colours brighter, the sounds louder and the feelings stronger, as if you’re turning up a car stereo. When the emotions peak, firmly press your fourth knuckle on your left hand and then release.
This ‘anchors’ in that feeling of motivation so that any time you need some inspiration to get going, you can press this point and reconnect with those positive feelings. Repeating the above process periodically makes the anchor stronger.
4) ‘Bank’ what you’ve achieved in the day
At the end of each day, prior to going to bed, reflect on the successes. Even if your To Do list is not completely done, mentally ‘pay’ the Bank of Self for everything that you have managed to do. Bigger tasks pay better! Your mind acknowledges this positive reinforcement and sets you up to do it all again tomorrow!