Intentional Action – the key to productivity
I have been coaching clients for several years. I just reached my 1000th hour of personal growth coaching. In that time, I have realized that the piece that most of my clients want help with is how to be less busy; how to find time for themselves; how to reduce the stress and anxiety in their lives and how to be healthier.
What I have developed is a strategy or a process for getting what you want with grace and ease. It is called Intentional Action. That means being intentional about how you show up in your day, what you choose to focus on and how you define success. This process has transformed many of my clients who say they feel more peace, confidence, and calm in their day. They have lightened up and have more fun and take more ‘me’ time and don’t feel guilty about it.
There are four parts to the process, and I am sharing them here for the 1st time.
They are clarity; intuition, priority, and truth. Each of these is important. Many of my clients want to jump in at priority – how to get the most stuff done! But, without clarity and intuition, they are going to flounder and go back to their old habits. I will walk you through each one and even have a video to give you some actionable tips to help you get started on your own. Of course, I believe everyone needs their own personal growth coach to keep them accountable –
Clarity is this missing piece for most of us. We don’t have a vision. We are just trying to get today done. We want to get to the end of the day and not get in trouble, to have forgotten some important meetings and still have enough energy to fix dinner and take care of our at-home responsibilities. Most of you –- like I used to be -– fall into a chair after all that and get lost in some television show to decompress. We are busy. We wear busy like a badge. We must be ok if we are busy. We get very comfortable with that anxiety of ‘I can’t get all this done’. I believe there is a better way. The first step is to decide for yourself (not your spouse or children or friends) what you want. Getting clear about what is important to you frees up all the fuzziness and allows you to focus on that. Focus on what would make your life better – more meaningful. Make sure the busy makes sense.
A vision for your life feels big. But, writing down what you want to be, do or have seems doable or at least it does to my clients. Watch this short video on how to create your own vision.
Intuition is this gift from God that is in all of us. It is that quiet voice that speaks to us and I believe it is always leading us to the ‘next right thing’. But, most of us are so busy and our lives are so full of noise that we don’t hear it. Have you ever had a problem or an important decision to make and you go to all of your friends asking advice? They each give you their best help and then you are more confused because your friends did not all agree. Then you have to decipher through all of their opinions and still don’t know what your opinion is. It is like Dorothy from the Wizard of Ox, you always had it – you always had intuition and your truth. So, how do you start to listen – click on this video to find out how
So, clarity and intuition are about why and what in getting clear about your life and what really matters. Priority is about the “how. ” Now, you are ready to dig into my top tips for being more productive. The most important element of priority is that you decide what your day is going to look like. You look at your calendar and tasks and decide what to focus on. You set up your day to get the most important things done. For many of you, I know that you think that you don’t get to decide – that others decide for you with their interruptions, their emergencies and all the other distractions. But I believe that you get to decide on about 50% of your day. How you use that uninterrupted time is up to you.
One of the most important pieces of priority is that when you know what your focus is, it is easier to say no to things. Saying no with generosity and kindness are keystones of taking back control of your life. We say yes for tons of reasons that usually have nothing to do with what we want to do but everything to do with pleasing others. Think before you say yes – next time. Watch this video for some great time management tips.
Now, you are ready to tackle speaking your truth. Most of us don’t speak our truth. It is easier to just go along. Just eat Mexican when we wanted Italian. It is no big deal right. Maybe not, and maybe you start with the little stuff. Speaking up means saying what you are feeling and what you want out loud. You decide what is worth bringing up and then you share what is going on. This is hard and it is hard because it requires us to be vulnerable. Letting our veil down and saying out loud, “I think I hurt your feelings and I am sorry”; I need you to know that you hurt my feelings when you said that; I need help and don’t know where to go to get it; I am not ok; I am struggling.
Most of us don’t speak up because we don’t think anything will really change or that the other person wants to know. We decide how they will react without giving them a chance. Speak up, tell your truth -even when it is awkward and weird, and you don’t know how to say it.