Where is spring!
I read this anonymous quote on social media that for me just captures the season we are in at the moment:
“IT'S LIKE WINTER IS REALLY MAD AND KEEPS STORMING OUT OF THE ROOM AND THEN COMING BACK YELLING, ‘AND ANOTHER THING!’”
So as we prepare for the much anticipated spring and summer, I’ve been thinking about how to structure my work day so I can find more time to enjoy the outdoors and the sunshine when it decides to grace the skies.
Words: Griselda Togobo;
Here are a few ideas I’ve come up with:
- Books meetings in 15 or 30 minutes slots. I don’t know about you but as a small business with a finite amount of time and resources, my time comes at a premium and I only want to have meetings that are not only productive but directly mappable to my goals. So I now only book 15 and 30 minutes slots in my diary. This helps to get us focused and to make the most of the time we have together.
- Reduce your commute where you can by working a day or two from home. The daily commute is a time thief. Luckily businesses have moved on and are now open to encouraging their staff to work from home. That wasn’t always the case some 8 years ago when I was in corporate as the work from home movement hadn’t really caught on then. Make the most of technology and schedule some productive days working from home.
- Delegate, delegate and delegate again! Especially those tasks that bore you. Someone else may just enjoy doing those spreadsheets, bookkeeping and writing those 10 page minutes. Get them to do it and give someone else the opportunity to learn how to get great at these tasks. It takes discipline to delegate.
- Turn ALL notifications including calls on your phone off when you want to do some productive work.
I know you might not agree with me but emails and phone calls may not always be productive work. Sometimes you just need to unplug from it all so you can focus on intense technical work. The email will still be waiting and the phone calls can always be returned. Master your time else your time will master you.
- Don’t check your emails unless you are able to answer and respond to them completely. I’m terrible for checking my emails on the go and then not actioning them because I needed more thinking time or needed access to internal systems to be able to respond properly. This is not a great habit due to time wasted in reading the email twice. It’s best to only access your emails when you are ready and able to deal with them.
- Unplug from social media. Social media is a great way of staying connected to friends and family and even marketing yourself but it must be approached with discipline especially when the evidence is increasingly pointing to the fact that we can get addicted to our phones. Why not only check social media at set times of the day, during your lunch time or even at the end of a very productive day?
- Give up TV for a few nights a week. You’ll be amazed at the time non TV watchers have. They talk more to each other and they get more done. Give up an hour of TV in the evening if you find yourself zoning out in front of the TV in the evenings.
- Exercise – This one is a revelation. Making the time to exercise gives you more energy to manage your day. Some of the most productive people I know are keen runners. You might be like me - only able to run under duress - so find something that motivates you and gets you moving so you can have the energy to do more.
- Do less - only get involved in things that absolutely excite you. We are after all human beings and not ‘human doings’. Say no to excessive meetings and projects with no direction.
- Get a buddy who makes the most of their summer time. We all have friends like that who just know how to squeeze every second of joy out of every day. They have already planned out their summer activities and will be guaranteed to have a lot of fun and not necessarily with the biggest budget. Plan activities with them and just go along. Say yes more often to trips and ‘get- together’.
I had an incredible summer last year when I applied a few of these tips.
What are your top tips for making the most of the spring/ summer?
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