In This Episode…
Today is a Bank Holiday Monday in the UK. And just like Saturday and Sunday I have been working.
I’ve managed to get away with it because my partner is spending the day with a friend of hers she’s not seen for 2 years.
So I have been full flow into my usual pattern of work. During the day I have been mulling over a range of ideas that have come to me as flashes of inspiration.
At first they appeared to be random musings. But as I got towards the end of the day, I could see there was a common thread.
Episode Show Notes…
Scattered Thinking Requires Defragmentation
I’ve been pondering on the relationship between my activity levels and busy-ness and the actual production of tangible results that help me work towards my goals.
I can see that flitting from one random task to another is a complete dilution of my focus and my energy. And so I have confused activity for achievement.
So what is the answer?
Well it is hidden in my mantra which is:
Do more important work in a more focused way, more often and for longer.Michael Tipper
I’ve got to identify what that important work is. I’m pretty sure I know, but probably need to get stronger on the routines to ensure that work gets done.
Sometimes I get consumed by a sense of overwhelm that occasionally paralyses me.
I’ve noticed that it often creeps in when I am faced with something that I believe is going to be difficult or at the very least complicated to do.
What’s been interesting for me to notice is that when I finally dive in an do the task or tasks that have been bothering me, they are relatively straightforward and far easier to complete than anticipated.
Sometimes they do require a bit of thought and effort to address, but nowhere near as much as I’d built up in my own head.
And then afterwards I have a little ritual of beating myself up for a) not doing it sooner and b) being somewhat pathetic.
It’s like standing on the side of a swimming pool that you think is going to be cold when you jump in, so you hang around on the edge of the pool finding any reason to delay the plunge.
And then when you finally take the leap, there is a bit of a shock as you hit the water but within seconds you’ve adapted and everything is fine.
So if the practicalities of completing the tasks that trigger this response are so trivial when I finally dive in, what is going on that causes the resistance?
I use the term resistance because that is what it feels like. Of course the behaviour I’m exhibiting is one of procrastination, but what is the cause?
I’m going to ponder on this during the day.
My Experiment Tapping Into The Magic Of Momentum
I played around with this a few days ago. I was taking 6 minute mini-strolls during the morning in between doing tasks that were unsavoury to me. So I am going to do the same today.
I’ll do a task or a series of tasks I don’t want to do for 30 minutes, and then I’ll take a 6 minute mini-stroll.
And it seems to have worked for me. As I record this I am 70% closer to my total steps goal for the day and I have managed to complete some significant tasks during the day.
What Are My Focused Few (Three…? Four…?)
I just went out for s 6 minute stroll in the garden and I started reflecting on what I should be focusing on.
This dilution of my effort across a whole range of activities is undermining the progress I wish to take. So I asked myself the question “What are my focused few…?”
I then dived into a little loop about whether it should be three or four and got hooked up on the importance of the alliteration!
So what are my focused few/three/four?
Well at the moment here are the top candidates:
- Delivering Paid For Sessions On Peak Performance Productivity
- Getting Booked For Delivering Paid For Sessions On Peak Performance Productivity
- Developing My Peak Performance Productivity
- Capturing The Lessons Of The Development Of My Peak Performance Productivity So I Can Share It In My Paid For Sessions.
Well these are the ones that spring to mind right now. So it is four. They seem to be congruent with the current stage of my masterplan.
These will now be the focus of my activities until further notice.
NOTE TO SELF – the first iteration of that last sentence started with the word “should”.
The Power Of Routines
I get these bursts of creative ideas around the development I am doing on myself. Today I had another one wash over me.
I have been reflecting on the power of routines and how important they are. I’ve been developing my own to focus my productivity.
For example I have a routine about checking LinkedIn connection requests. I have a routine in the morning when I wake up. I have a routine for doing my podcast.
So I have been thinking about how to explain the importance of having a routine. There is value in the consistent results you can get. But there is also value in the problems you avoid by keeping to a routine.
Perhaps the first routine we all get introduced to as small children is that of cleaning our teeth in the morning when we get up and in the evening when we go to bed.
If we keep doing that then we are much more likely to have healthy teeth and avoid going to the dreaded dentist.
But if we let that routine slip, our oral hygiene will begin to suffer. The teeth will discolour.
Perhaps our breath with smell. Plaque will begin to build up and the environment for decay will start to emerge. Left long enough, we’ll start to develop gum disease, the teeth will decay and more work might be needed.
It’s a dramatic example, but all that can be avoided by just following through on a simple routine. I mulled over a similar analogy with letting your hair grow but it didn’t have quite the same emotional impact.
The reason I am mentioning this now is I realise the routines I currently have do not support my aspirations.
I have a need to research new knowledge to develop my productivity. At the moment I’m not doing that and am leaning on the residual knowledge I have.
My Virtual Assistant Has The Week Off
My VA has got the week off. It’s only Monday and already I’m feeling the impact of her absence. What is becoming clearer and clearer to me as I take steps towards my goals is that I can’t do it alone.
I need the support of people like my exceptional assistant to do the things I am not good at or that I shouldn’t be doing so I can focus on my Main Thing.
So while she’s away, I’ve got to load the podcast episodes up onto the Blog. I’m pretty sure I won’t be as effective as she is at it!