When you’re busy running your own business, it’s natural for things here and there to fall to the wayside. Maybe it’s a task that’s just not that exciting. Or perhaps it’s something you keep putting off, but eventually, you know these things need to get done. Even the most experienced people can fall victim to habitual procrastination.
A major reason this problem tends to come up is when you just don’t have enough time in the day to get everything done. By reassessing your time management, you can quickly work in the skills to start checking off your to-do list, and not feel overwhelmed by what needs to be dealt with.
When You Keep Forgetting About It
Half the time, the tasks we put off are the most boring ones. Whether it keeps slipping your mind or you there always seems like something better to do, these kinds of tasks aren’t very pressing, and are therefore the easiest to ignore. Unfortunately, it’s not very practical to just let these pile up until you have a rare free day to knock them all out at once, but besides, that’s not how you want to spend your free time.
When it comes to this, the best way to get it done is by zeroing in on your time management. If something tends to keep dropping to the bottom of your checklist, you want to specifically schedule the time to get it out of the way. When you’re mentally prepared to get something boring done and have the time set aside to at least work on it, it will just become another routine.
If it doesn’t take that much energy, think of it as a mini-break where you’re not having to stress yourself out over something that requires tonnes of brainpower, but you still get a chance to feel productive and a sense of accomplishment. Even if this just looks like putting away 30 minutes a couple of times a week to chip away at those forgetful jobs, it’s a small change that can have a big shift in how much you get done.
When You Keep Dreading It
If it’s not something you keep forgetting that you’re putting off, it’s probably something you’re putting off on purpose. If it’s a task that you’re putting off for a particular reason, it’s probably not a small job, so the first step is breaking it down into something more approachable. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and if you expect yourself to spend a whole day plugging away at one thing that takes hours and hours, you’ll never feel accomplished and you’ll just end up rushing to get it over with.
Having a project-specific to-do list that is clear about what steps something will take to get done will make the job less intimidating. However, if you find yourself with a list of lists at the beginning of every day with each one longer than the last, try being more concise so you don’t end up overwhelming yourself. If you schedule your time carefully and mark how long each step will roughly take, you could surprise yourself when you have a spare 15 minutes and use that time to tick off even just one step of a project.
Making these habits will get something done bit by bit, and before you know it the job will be racing by and you will laugh at how you were dreading it for nothing. Make sure to keep any deadlines in mind, but with a good outline, you can do more with less time than you realise. But when you finally complete a task, whether it’s just a couple of big steps or the whole project, make sure to take some time to celebrate and enjoy even the mini-victories, and reward yourself with some time to regenerate.
When You Don’t Have The Time For It
Even if you find yourself super organised with clear calendars and detailed checklists, there are still those tasks that you just can’t find the time to get done. You can’t do everything all at once and in business, prioritising is a major part of meeting deadlines and maximising productivity. It’s also important not to overwork yourself and so naturally, there are things that seem impossible to schedule. To try and solve this, communication with yourself and your team is of the utmost importance. Being honest with yourself about what you can realistically achieve with a high standard is key, and if you find that you need help, you are that much closer to getting things done.
Reassessing the value of the task is key, because if there is a job that doesn’t need to be completed specifically by you, considering whether it can be automated, eliminated or delegated is your next step when you just can’t find the time. To eliminate or automate a task, you have to assess if there are systems or procedures in place that can lighten your workload. By downloading your free e-Book here, you can get a better sense of how you can systemise your business.
If you decide that delegating is what you need, then open communication with other team members who might have that extra time to work on something is a great way to not only improve productivity but morale. Alternatively, enlisting the help of a trusty virtual assistant to help you maximise what gets done is an easy way to make more time.
So are you ready to at long last check off what you keep putting off?