How To Be Productive [Podcast #001]admin
I have always been amazed at "productive" people.
In school, I wanted to know what the best students were doing to get good grades. It seemed like they had a secret to getting their homework done on time while I was struggling to throw something together at the last minute.
Turns out after watching them they all had some kind of system. Some had day planners, some just did their homework as soon as it was assigned and some were in study groups.
Rewarded For Being Unproductive!
Then I went to work in corporate America, I was shocked to see that most productive people are actually "punished" for being productive and everyone knew it.
The most successful people in Corporate America also had 'systems'. They would spend time getting coffee, organizing 2 hour meetings and having lots of 'client lunches'.
I even had one boss that told me he waited to go to the bathroom in the morning until he got to work (in not so nice words). His system was called the "$120 sh**!" (no joke)
Anyone that has worked in the 'system' knows that you get paid for time, not for productivity.
Retrain Yourself To Be An Entrepreneur
As a small business owner, you no longer get paid for your time, per se. If you sit at your computer for 8 hours and do nothing or worse, the wrong thing... guess what? You make no money!
When I started my own business online and soon discovered that there were thousands of productivity and time management systems. I even found a ton that actually worked for me from my now business partner, Robert Plank.
No matter what you want to accomplish having a 'system' to follow makes it way easier. Especially online since so many of us are completely new to marketing, technology and even running our own businesses.
Systems Aren't Everything
But even with the best systems I have found there are some days I sit at my computer and just stare. I know I should be doing a system. I know I should be productive, but for some mental reason I just can't.
Here are 2 things that I have found dramatically improve my mental state so and actually make me able to change my mental state instantly so that I can move forward and follow traditional systems.
1) Motivation Wall - A couple of months ago, I recieved a few nasty emails and it really put a mental block on me. My wife just laughed and said, "what about all the nice things people have said or done for you online?"
I couldn't think of any... (funny how one or two negative things can over ride a zillion positive ones at the time)
So she pulled out cards, letters and other 'trinkets' that customers, friends and students had sent to me. You know what? It changed my mental state immediately!
Now I hang up my favorite ones right in front of my computer. This is the first thing I see when I sit down every day and it makes me feel great about what I am doing right away.
2) Quiet - Normally, I love things quiet. But recently I have found that while working online as entrepreneur this can be extremely bad! Most of us sit at the computer for hours on end reading blogs and forums, building websites and sometimes getting frustrated because a piece of software or site isn't doing what we think it should.
If you spend too much time in this kind of isolation and quiet, you will not only decrease your productivity, but you will eventually condition yourself to be in a bad mood.
I started using a free service called Pandora, that actually tailors music to my liking. It took a while, but now almost every song they play is something I love.
Here is the thing. Don't sit in silence. Listen to interviews from people you want to be like, listen to music, put something on. You will notice an immediate change in your mood and productivity.