For many of my clients, balance is an issue. By “balance,” I’m talking about the ability to get everything done at work, so you don’t have to think about it when you get home. There will always be big projects and unmet deadlines that keep us up at night, but learning how to create some balance is possible.
The best way to achieve this happy medium is through focus. It’s so simple, but we like to make things complicated. Through concentration, we can accomplish both productivity, and peace of mind by knowing what your MIT – Most Important Thing – is and then making sure you get that done first. It is that easy.
Starting your day with your priorities in order is the key to keeping your concentration. Most of us start our days reading our inbox, and going down the rabbit hole of answering and deleting emails. We have allowed someone else’s’ agenda to be more important than our own. I urge you to start your day with your list of what needs to be done to create balance in your life. What are those items that you can realistically get done? I also believe in hard scheduling only 50-60% of your day to leave room for interruptions.
Questions to ask yourself when you’re feeling out of focus:
- What is my MIT (Most Important Thing)?
- What appointments do I have on my calendar?
- What tasks are my priority for the day?
- When can I schedule time to work on it?
We may keep appointments with others, but we don’t often keep appointments with ourselves. I believe that when you have a project that’s going to take some time to complete, you should make an appointment with yourself and close your door to work on that. It is those essential tasks that we avoid, and that big to-do that keeps us up at night.
We tend to start in on our list – doing the little things first so we can have a ‘win.’ By marking a few things off the list, we feel we have accomplished something; This is backward. When you have focus, you start with the big stuff. The little things will always get done.
By starting your day with just a few minutes of quiet time, you will know what your big things are. You will have your focus for the day, and I promise that you will have balance.