A very clever way women procrastinate is by assuming they need to set aside massive blocks of time to focus on a particular area of business. Planning and bookkeeping/cash flow are the two I hear women most often say “I just need to find a day to get stuck in to that”.
You’re busy, you’re never going to find that day!
The thing is we are all busy (ish). Finding an entire day to focus on a task that you most likely hate doing (if you enjoyed it you would probably be on top of it already) is never going to happen. Finding big chunks of time is near impossible, finding big chunks of time AND the motivation to start and finish that big ol’ plan or that ugly cash flow is as likely as riding a donkey naked down the middle of the highway. Not going to happen.
Let’s not go wild, start small!
Stop punishing yourself by trying to find these magical big empty blocks of time and start small. If you need to start planning your business grab out the Profit Lovers Plan and Track and focus on just the next month or two. If you need to catch up on bookkeeping start by entering just the current month right now so the problem doesn’t get any bigger.
Even if you did find that magical free day I would bet my last piece of Mars Bar Slice (yeah.. I eat that crap) that you would spend it doing something else instead. I hear this with coaching clients and in the Profit Lovers group all the time, “I took the full day off to deal with my bookkeeping but went to a cafe and napped instead, I just couldn’t get motivated”. Then comes the flood of guilt and self loathing…
Small actions lead to big results
When you take small daily or weekly actions you will get results. It is like exercise, head out to the gym for a five hour session and you will mentally scarred for life. You won’t want to go back for another year (if ever). Take a 20 minute walk each day and not only will you feel great, you will be making small steps in the right direction instead of one massive, exhausting, overwhelming leap.
Everyone has their dirty secret
Remember that there are very few people who love every single aspect of running their business, we all have a dirty little secret. Some task that we know we should be doing but just can’t find the energy, motivation and time to tackle. Don’t beat yourself up, just schedule 20 minutes a day to get started on it. Do as much as you can in 20 minutes, then move on with your day. No more waiting for a full uninterrupted day to arrive.
How to get started
Choose one area of your business that you know you need to spend time on. Set an alarm for the next week at the same time each day. As soon as the alarm buzzes set a 20 minute timer and get stuck into that activity you really don’t want to do. When your 20 minutes is up you can get back to what you were doing. If you’re anything like me when your 20 minutes is up you will be on a roll and wanting to keep going.
*Disclaimer – swapping around activities is not the best for productivity so you would want to keep this tip only for the BIG ugly tasks you can never find the time to start*
Follow the tip for 2 weeks and you will have spent at least 3 hours on that project that you don’t “have time” for.