Tips to Manage Your Time More Effectively

     Do you work hard or work smart?  Most of us are proud of how hard we work, how many hours we put in and how tired we are arunning-on-empty-hourglasst the end of each day.  It seems that people think that their level of exhaustion is a measure of how much they have given to a project.  This is backwards thinking.

     If you have a vision and you love what you do, you’ll be inspired to complete it.  You feel energized and excited about the project and you enjoy working on it.  I believe that if you manage your time effectively and work smart, rather than hard, you don’t have to put in long hours to produce amazing results.  It’s all about inspiration and organization.

     The first step to managing your time is to create a vision.  If you have a vision, you immediately can prioritize tasks based on where they fit in to achieving this vision.  If a task doesn’t move you closer to the vision being achieved, why would you put it on your to-do list?

     What is the structure you use to manage your time?  Do you have to-do lists that are categorized and prioritized?  To do lists are demoralizing.  Most people overestimate the amount of time they have in a day and how many tasks they can get done.  Stop making to do lists and take your tasks and schedule them.  This system, called time-blocking, allows you to actually see what time you have for available tasks.  When you use time-blocking, you’ll begin to see that you don’t have nearly the time you think you have.  Schedule in daily routines like getting up, showering, commuting, answering email, eating lunch, etc. and you will see the remaining hours you have to be productive.  The truth may shock you… but it will cause you to make REAL choices about your time and adjust your expectations accordingly.  The more you fulfill your expectations, the more empowered you become.

    Another tip to being effective is to schedule in your down time.  Make sure that you are giving yourself enough time to slow down and participate in the hobbies you love.  If you are feeling overwhelmed and exhausted, you aren’t going to be an effective result-producer.  Balancing your life is one of the keys to producing amazing results.

     Get a coach.  Most people have no idea where their time goes, where they are being unproductive and actually in the way of their own dreams.  Hiring a coach will allow you to bring on a partner that is as commmitted to your goals as you are.  Your coach will be able to see how you are “performing” on the court and help you get rid of habits that are slowing you down, while teaching you techniques that increase your result-production. 

     Finally, stop trying to do it all.  Look at your schedule and identify items that don’t take your talent or personality to accomplish.  Delegate these.  Hire an assistant to help get the mundane actions done and focus your time on what’s important; those things at the core of your business.

    Always remember that the key to success is a vision and the farther removed you get from the vision, the less effective you will be in achieving it.

When you present yourself, do people see your vision?

I heard something so brilliant yesterday, and believe it or not, it was on a clothing makeover show.  It just goes to show you that you can get great coaching anywhere, if you’re ears and your mind are always wide open.  The stylist on the program had some great coaching:

“You can’t control how you are perceived, only how you are presented.”

This is such simple, life-changing advice.  It’s basic marketing; step 1 to success, but something business people routinely overlook.

Think about it: how do you PRESENT yourself right now?  When people look at you are they clear that you represent the life vision that you have set for yourself?  Do you make it a point to share that vision?  To articulate it whenever possible?  Is your style, personality and physical presentation consistent with that vision?  SINCE YOU CAN ONLY CONTROL HOW YOU ARE PRESENTED, what are you currently presenting?

So many people out there feel that having a dream and wanting it to happen is enough.  But, in truth, making your vision happen takes INTENTIONAL, dedicated work and where it starts is with your presentation.

You cannot control how you are perceived, but you can alter it by presenting yourself in a way that represents who you are truly committed to being in the world.  What step(s) can you take today to have your vision fully represented in how you present yourself?  Do you need to change your wardrobe, your weight, your ability to excel in public speaking?  Maybe you just need business cards and a new briefcase… or perhaps it’s bumper stickers with your business’ mantra and info on them.  What can you do TODAY to align your presentation with the perception you want to create in the world?

Why are we so willing to live uninspired?

Live Inspired!Why are we so willing to live uninspired?

When is the last time you asked yourself what you REALLY wanted to be when you “grew up?” How about what you REALLY wanted your life to look like?

Have you ever wondered why most of us are so willing to live a life that is uninspired, unremarkable and completely mediocre?

The answer is obvious: Mediocrity is easy, and people always default to EASY. Inherently, human beings are lazy and afraid. (Yes, I mean you, the human being.) Being lazy and afraid is our default mechanism, so if something else isn’t CONSCIOUSLY CAUSED in it’s place, that’s what runs the show.

So here you are, being in your default mechanism, going about your regular old life. You’re being lazy and afraid and this makes you resist the things in your life that challenge you. In turn, all of this resistance sucks the possibility out of our lives. We feel stuck, hopeless or even bored.

Some of you us are also in denial. We say “I’m not stuck, hopeless, lazy or afraid… I just did blah, blah, blah… see! I’m glad I’m not one of THOSE people.” Then tonight you’ll go to bed, set your alarm, it will go off at 6 a.m. and you will begin to hit snooze 47 times until you finally get up and drag your butt off to a job you find tolerable. Ohhhh…. you’re right, there is NOTHING you are resisiting. You are just fine.

So why are we so willing to live uninspired?

Being responsible for one’s greatness requires that you take risks. Risks that open yourself up to failure, shame and embarrassment. People who take risks, RISK making an ass of themselves, possibly failing and often they stand out in the crowd. People assume this is an uncomfortable place to exist. But it is not UNCOMFORTABLE, it is simply UNFAMILILAR and you can teach yourself to feel at home there.

TODAY ask yourself:

What would it take to be the best you you could be in your life? What actions would you have to take TODAY to start delivering on the contribution you know you could make to the world? What are some of the material possessions, family experiences or quality of life issues you would like to explore in your life?

Interesting inquiry, huh?

Get off your “yes, but…” and start now.

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