Do you ever find yourself watching tv, scanning the internet, etc while feeling disgusted with yourself for doing that instead of something else? Does your “inner mom” scold you regularly for not getting something done?
Procrastinators of the world UNITE! … Tomorrow.
Procrastination is the slow death to ourselves and our business. There’s always something we can do besides the thing we should be doing – the thing we KNOW we should be doing. Then we look at that thing at the end of the day and say “Geez, I worked SO hard today but I didn’t get to the important thing. I just have SO much to do, I don’t have time to do the important thing. I’m exhausted!”
Here are my 11 tips for beating the procrastination funk, jazzing up your energy, kicking ass with your small business and feeling AWESOME about yourself at the end of the day:
Prepare a plan
Songs get stuck in our heads often because we don’t know all the words and our mind is trying to figure it out. Goals don’t get done often because there’s some steps blocking us that we’ve not planned out so we can complete them. IE: If you haven’t made your first Facebook ad, it might be because you’re not sure what you want to advertise, so that has to be a step added to your plan.
Create a ritual/habit of time for your project
I’m a huge fan of 15 minute increments every day because it’s small enough that everyone can do it. Some of my clients prefer to schedule two hours once a week. Whatever works for you, making that time sacred is paramount to getting things done. NOTE: There will be a test. There will be a temptation to put it off ‘this one time’. That is fear talking. Don’t let it win!
Set milestones to celebrate
You just don’t hike a nation. You hike a set number of miles a day and finally, after a long trek, you reach your goal. Celebrate your victories by setting milestones to help give you the drive to keep going.
Work towards an honest deadline
Ever notice how much more we get done the week before a vacation? Deadlines generate ingenuity, drive and focus. Setting a deadline can help get your tail in gear.
Have someone hold you accountable for your goals
Goals are great, but as I said before, we will be tempted to excuse our way out of them. I have an accountability partner I meet with every Friday. There have been many a time where I only completed a task because I knew I would be reporting in at the end of the week. And you know what? It works pretty darn well.
Turn off and shut out distractions for a set time every day
No Facebook, no cellphone, no checking the email, no office interruptions by staff (post a sign saying when they can come back). The emergencies will still be there in a few minutes or an hour or so. Your lack of customers could become quite an emergency if you don’t take a little time to focus only on your marketing.
Stop blaming others
As Bob Barson says in his article: “No one else is going to get it done. There is nothing stopping you from progress except YOU. You are in control of the decisions you make and the attitude you choose to adopt.”
Every heard of a Big Hairy Audacious Goal? Sometimes by aspiring to something big, the previously ‘big’ deal you’ve been avoiding becomes smaller and just a step to something even more exciting.
Get in a good head space
A good friend of mine performs an activity every morning she calls “Ink Vomit” which is just a short period where you take a pen and some paper and keep writing whatever comes to your head. Not necessarily marketing related. It could be whatever comes to your head. By doing this non-stop, not judging what comes out, just allowing it to happen for 20 minutes or so, you’re giving a place for those distracting thoughts that otherwise run on repeat in your head to have a home. It’s amazing also what genius revelations can come out of these seemingly innocuous activities.
What is the one thing that would make you proud today?
Great question to ask yourself is “If I could only get one thing done for my marketing today and it would make me proud of myself, what would that one thing be?” This gives a lot of focus on where your energy is best spent.