Are you productive in your business? How can you tell?
That’s what today’s video is about. What does being productive really mean and how does that apply to your business?
What does productivity mean?
Productivity simply means output. You put do something and you get something out of it.
But that doesn’t necessarily relate to productivity in your business.
That could be me walking into the kitchen, going into the cupboard and getting some chocolate. But that doesn’t help my health or the fact that I’m trying to cut down on
my sugar, but it would be very productive for my sugar cravings.
See what I mean?
Productivity is not necessarily always a good thing.
Often the bad kind of productivity can be described as procrastination.
For those of you who don’t know, I’m also a fiction writer. Fiction writers tend to be amazing at procrastination. We could win awards at it.
Even though every part of you wants be sat there writing, actually sitting down and writing is one of the hardest things to do. I have no idea why.
Procrastination can feel very productive.
When I’m personally procrastinating, I will go and clean the house, or I will do some work for Adminosaurus when I’m procrastinating from writing, and vice versa.
I’m being productive in my procrastinating, but I’m not being productive in my business. I’m not doing things to take my business forward, and that’s what productivity in business is all about.
In order to figure out whether you are being productive or you are procrastinating, you need to be honest with yourself. That’s it!
A bit of will power and a bit of honesty can take you a long way.
How to get back to being productive
There are four really easy steps to achieving the good kind of productivity.
I say easy, in theory it’s very easy. In actually doing them, really hard!
Figure out what you want to achieve.
This can over the next day, week, month or year.
What are your goals? What tasks do you need to do?
Take those goals and break them down into steps.
What do you need to do to achieve those goals or complete those tasks? Break it down into mini tasks.
Work out how you’re going to complete those steps.
Now, this is where your individuality comes into play. You need to find a system that works for you.
I’ll give you an example.
Over the last year I’ve tried a few ways to stay productive. I used to take work day by day. So Monday is a marketing day, Tuesday is a novel writing day, Wednesday is a content day, etc.
That’s alongside daily client work and writing.
It meant that I was generally overwhelmed before I’d had breakfast.
So right now I’m trying to take it week by week. Every day I’ll do the client work and writing I need to do, but then the afternoons are spent focusing on a weekly goal.
This week could be marketing week, next week could be all about writing that new novel and the week after is about batch filming content ready for the month ahead.
And so far it’s working!
It’s about knowing who you are and what works for you.
Don’t forget to add some time into your schedule for procrastination.
But I thought procrastination was bad! I hear you cry.
Well, no, it isn’t. It takes you away from reaching your goals, but only if you let it get the better of you.
Procrastination actually allows you to think creatively, problem solve and come up with new ideas.
That’s why writers, especially fiction writers, swear by it… *ahem*
Procrastination and exercise can both help to keep you fresh and motivated, making you more productive in the long run.
Reward yourself! Be kind to yourself.
It’s worth building a day a week, or a couple of days a month, that you can effectively take off from work and do what you enjoy outside of your business.
Reward yourself whether you’ve met your goals or just finally got round to finishing that horrible piece of work you’ve been putting off.
There’s science behind this.
When you receive a positive reward for doing something you don’t enjoy, chemicals are released that associate that positive reward with that boring/icky task you had to do. Making that horrible piece of work bearable in the future.
Go play around with different schedules and figure out what works for you.
Once you’ve got it, stick with it.
And I wish for you a lovely productive month and year, and a nice big nice chunk of procrastination to get the creative juices flowing.