Ideas for improving productivity
That lull between Christmas and New Year can be a great opportunity to clear out old clutter to clear the decks for the new year.
Whilst sorting through some old files recently I came across an exercise I used to use with my leadership coaching clients called “Stop the Spinning plates”
Everything that is incomplete drains our energy. Like keeping plates in the air; all incomplete things provide an opportunity for procrastination, for sending us off on a tangent with displacement activities, and hampering our productivity.
They allow the important things to get lost in the clutter, both literally and metaphorically.
So having re-discovered the exercise I thought I’d share the list with you.
The list does start with the obvious, but as you work through I believe you’ll come across a few that have been creating some clutter.
Ticking just a few of these off your list can be quite liberating.
Make a commitment to when you will complete each of these actions, so you can improve your productivity.
- Make a list of all the things you have to do – a to do list – and refer to it daily.
- Get an appointment calendar. Put all your appointments in it. Refer to it daily. Plan your time. Stick to it.
- Clean up your house.
- Clean up your office.
- Throw away everything you don’t use, haven’t used in the last 6 months, or which is outdated.
- Organise your papers, file or throw away any unused papers.
- Clear out your filing cabinets. Throw away unused materials.
- Clear the top of your desk. Throw away unused materials and unneeded papers. File all papers you don’t throw away.
- Get all financial statements up to date, including tax returns.
- Pay any outstanding bills or make arrangements &/or agreements as to when you will pay them. Keep those agreements
- Make a list of everyone who owes you money, or has borrowed things. Write or call and ask for the money or borrowed items, and make an agreement as to when you will have it back. Follow this up. Alternatively cross the person off the list and decide it is complete.
- Make a list of all the things that you have started but not completed. Either diarise when you will complete these (with a time) or make a conscious decision not to do it and take it off your list.
- Make a list of all the things you have wanted to do for some time, but have just not got round to doing. Either diarise when you will complete these (with a time) or make a conscious decision not to do it and take it off your list.
- Make a list of all the agreements you have made. Fulfil past agreements. Renegotiate and make new agreements with any you can’t fulfil.
- Take total responsibility for your business. Do only what you can, delegate the rest. Agree only what you know you can fulfil. Never commit to more than you know you can do.
- Clean your car, inside and out. Get it serviced.
- Start to take care of your physical body – eat well, exercise well, sleep well, etc
If you only do one thing: Pick just one item off this list and do it today!
Related video: I didn’t have time
Related post: Ending the year on a high