By Mark Creedon
Have you ever wondered how it is that successful people get so much done in their day? I mean let’s be honest we all only have 24 hours in the day. It can be easy to put it down to the fact that they have lots of people to delegate things to but the reality is that they understand the benefit of planning and their planning starts first thing in the morning.
If you want to get the jump start on the day and achieve more than you ever have then there are three simple steps to follow:
- Have a morning routine
- Block out time in your calendar to work on your business
- Remove distractions so you can stay focused.
I have a simple morning routine. I get up at around 5 or 5.30 am. I spend thirty minutes reading something insightful. It may be a business book or an article or blog, something which is going to further my knowledge and inspire me to take action. Something which improves me.
After I have read, I spend about 20 minutes writing in my journal. This helps me to focus on the priorities, not for the day but for my life. I take the time to journal about the life lessons I have learned the day before and the positives I can take from them. I also take some time toward the end of my journal entry to acknowledge what I must be grateful for. Sometimes it is a significant win in my business or a major win I know a client has had. Sometimes it is just being grateful for the fact that I get to sit on my balcony overlooking the ocean each morning. What this journaling does though is to place things in the right order for me. I think about what I have learned and therefore what I can take forward with me, what I need to leave behind and then the final gratitude exercise sets the positive mind set for the rest of the day. It is a bit like it doesn’t matter what the world might throw at me today, I have things to be very grateful for.
Once I have finished journaling, I go through my email inbox and answer the pressing emails, send the ones I want to get started on early so that others can be working on them throughout the day and either delegate, delay or delete the rest. Going through that process gives me clarity to the day, clears the backlog of emails and sets expectations for me and others before the day is too far underway. Once I have the emails delt with I then write out my daily to do lists, the projects I want to get completed that day. I already have my regular daily, weekly and monthly tasks in my calendar so all I need to do is allocate time for is the tasks which have come up in the last 24 hours or which may have come from dealing with my emails that morning.
So, what is your morning routine? If you don’t have one, make a start right now. Grab a pen and paper and think about what a productive morning routine looks like for you and before you say that it’s not possible because you are not a morning person, I have to tell you that neither am I. On the weekends I love a sleep in and will think nothing of lying in bed until 10 am or later!
What I did was train myself on a new routine and simply practice it until it became a habit and you can do the same. Please don’t rule this out because you don’t think you can get up at 5 am. That’s fine it is far more about the actual routine than the hour of the day. There is a saying that if you claim the morning you claim the day, so claim your morning wherever time that may start for you. Remember it is about how you plan your day, the order of things.
I won’t waste a lot of time on this. Imagine if I told you I could help you gain an extra day a week! I imagine you would be pretty impressed however the reality is far less impressive and not at all magical.
There is a difference between wasted time and time which feeds you. If you want to scale your time so that you can move your business to the next level you have to learn how to distinguish between the two. If you really want more time to spend working on your business but feel like there just isn’t enough hours in the day, stop and take an honest and critical look at what you do spend your time on. Spend a week keeping a track of the amount of time you watch TV, spend time on social media or reading emails which are never going to help you advance your personal skills nor your business. If we are completely honest with ourselves there will be plenty of time to tap into, it is just a question of priorities and discipline.
Mark Creedon is the founder of Business Accelerator mastermind by Metropole and business coach to some of Australia’s leading entrepreneurs – helping them build a true business, not a job.
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