“I just don’t have the time!"
This is the #1 thing I hear from my clients when I work with them on their social media content strategy.
It's true, social media does take time in your day or week, just like any other lead generation activity in your business. Social media deserves just as much of your time as your sales process, or any other business planning you do.
Why? Because social media is where your audience is. Plain and simple. And don't you want to be where your people are? Don't you want to be giving them important information about who you are? Don't you want to be providing value to them so they pay closer attention to your brand? Don't you want to connect with your audience so you can learn more about your clients and how you can serve them better?
So, stop thinking social media is this thing you don't have time for. You have to make the time for it. And with some simplified strategies, it won't take up as much time as you think.
But that doesn't change the fact that you're crazy busy! You're running a business for goodness sakes. Of course you're running off your feet!
Which is where productivity comes in.
Productivity and time management go hand in hand. If you can improve your productivity, you'll save more time!
To help you become more productive, here are just three tips that I've learned from some of the highest performing coaches in the world, and I can tell you from experience that they actually work!
1. Don't Multi-task
It is actually physically impossible to give 100% of your attention to more than one thing at a time. Think about it. If you're doing more than one thing at a time, at least a portion of your attention is focused on that other thing. By multi-tasking, you're essentially saying "this doesn't deserve my full attention." How rude!
We've been conditioned to think that if we're multi-tasking, we're being more productive, but it's just not true. Studies have shown that when we focus on just one task at a time, we produce better quality results and are actually more efficient. It takes our brains more time to switch into different tasks, so if we're constantly multi-tasking, most of our time is spent trying to refocus on each task rather than actually doing the task itself.
I don’t know about you, but email seems to be the biggest multi-tasking distraction in my day. Every time I hear that incoming email message, auto-pilot takes over and before I know it, I drop what I’m working on to check the email. This is one of the biggest bad habits I had to break, but once I noticed it made a huge difference almost immediately.
Productivity Tip: Close your email so an incoming message doesn’t distract you from the task at hand. Set aside the time to check your emails at designated times of the day. All the other times, close it down so you’re not tempted to check it.
2. Schedule Your Time
Blocking out your time for specific tasks seriously increases your productivity. So often we end up multi-tasking because we don’t think we’ll get everything done in time. So, by scheduling your day, you can clearly see the time you have set aside to complete each task.
Whether it’s checking emails, scheduling social media content, responding to direct messages and comments, writing a report, or making a phone call, every task gets a designated timeslot in your schedule.
To make sure you’re still completing tasks on time, start each week or day with a list of everything you want to accomplish, then put them in order of importance or priority. The higher priority items get scheduled first.
Productivity Tip: We all know eventually there will be things come up that need to be dealt with right away. Schedule that in too! Schedule 15 minutes every hour or two dedicated to putting out any fires that have come up.
Most importantly – stick to the damn schedule! This takes practice and discipline to keep yourself to the schedule, but I promise, once you put it into practice, it will significantly improve your performance!
Bonus Tip: To really improve your performance, schedule time after each task as a breather. Get up from your desk, stretch, do some breathing exercises. Something that allows your brain the space and time to transition from one task to the next.
3. Start Your Day Off Right
The first few minutes after you wake up will set the tone for the rest of your day, so it’s important to start it off right!
If you’re immediately reaching for your phone before you even get out of bed, you’re instantly in work mode, checking emails or notifications. Suddenly you’re reminded of that report that didn’t get done, or a question waiting for you in your inbox, or that deadline coming up. And just like that, you’re in a bad headspace from the beginning.
Be intentional about how you start your day to set yourself up to be productive. Don’t check your emails, messages, or notifications when you wake up. Do the things that will get you in a good head space and make you feel strong and empowered to start your day.
Productivity Tip: As soon as you wake up in the morning, do these three things:
Think about one thing you’re grateful for. It can be something as simple as your breath, or your comfortable bed, or your spouse, or your best friend. Just think about one thing you are grateful for.
Think about a win you had the day before. It could be that presentation you crushed, that report you finished, the task you checked off your list, or the self-care you gave yourself.
Think about one thing you want to accomplish that day. Keep it realistic and picture yourself accomplishing it. How will you feel? How will you celebrate? Put yourself in that mindset and you will feel empowered to get it done.
At the end of the day, everyone is different. Maybe all of these things won’t work for you, but you won’t know until you try. I’m talking about actually giving them a solid try. Don’t just try it one day and give up because it didn’t work.
Like any good habit, it takes time, practice, and repetition to make it stick.
Just pick one of these things and commit to starting it today. Start with just one thing at a time, master it, and then move on to the next one.
Before you know it, you’ll be a productivity master!