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There’s always a lot of jargon used when it comes to talking about mindset and the different psychological approaches to work. Really, all we’re talking about is how we can approach and complete tasks in a less stressful and more rewarding pattern. When you run your own business, this is more critical than ever, as you’ll naturally carry more pressure when it comes to the desire to succeed and grow.

Putting off Tasks

It’s easy to say you’re not an organised type of person, or you don’t have the time to do the boring or necessary tasks. But, are the things you’re putting off negatively affecting your mindset when it comes to approaching your day, or even your week?  Pushing inevitable tasks to the back of your mind doesn’t make then go away, it just makes them seem bigger and more daunting. It can even lead to a physical feeling of being unwell and you avoiding work you’d normally enjoy.

Eat your Frogs Before Breakfast

Based on the quote from Mark Twain, the Frog is a metaphor for getting the worst thing done at the start of the day. Once you’ve done what you’ve been putting off, you’ll automatically start to feel a sense of accomplishment. With the dreaded Frog, no longer hanging over you, you’ll be able to focus on the other tasks which you find more enjoyable and rewarding.

Time Management Strategies

  • Plan Your Day – There’s still nothing better than an old fashioned to-do list when it comes to keeping you focused and on track. The list doesn’t have to be set in stone, and you’ll always need to leave yourself some wiggle room for flexibility. This type of planning means you have a more visual picture of where you’re spending your time, and the tasks you’re avoiding doing. It doesn’t matter if it’s done electronically in a calendar, in a CRM, or on paper, you’ll naturally become more focused on the tasks ahead. And, let’s be honest, who doesn’t like crossing things off lists!
  • Deal with Emails – Some emails are more important than others, but the ones that sit in your inbox can make it look and feel like you have a lot more work to do than the reality.
  • Focus and Avoid Distractions – It can be hard to block out distractions like emails and calls as this type of communication can make you feel you need to respond immediately. This isn’t the case though, often you’ve been in a meeting for an hour and the world hasn’t stopped because you didn’t respond to someone immediately. If you need to focus, take the time out. Put your ‘out of office’ on for an hour and switch your phone to voicemail.
  • Set Goals and Allocate Time – For instance, say to yourself, I want to achieve these tasks today by 2 pm. Unless you’re in a position to delegate, no one else is going to achieve the goals you set. If you need to do sales calls or speak to candidates then allocate a block of time. A full hour of sales calls will be much more productive than 10 mins here and there throughout the day.
  • Reward Yourself – Working for yourself gives you the option and flexibility when it comes to how and when you work. If you’ve achieved everything for the day, why not put work down and do something which you find personally rewarding.
  • Reclaim your work-life balance – Most people who run their own business do so because they want to decide the best way of working for them. Some days you’ll have more work to do than others. There’s nothing stopping you taking time out on Monday afternoon to do something you enjoy, as long as you’ve mastered the art of time management.