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4 Tools for Staying on Track

Work Optimization

Two years ago I made the decision to step away from conventional employment and move into the world of entrepreneurship. Being a person who is organized, utilizes tools to stay on task and self motivated I thought I was good to go, however, I learned quickly that I was missing a few habits to optimize my days.

Here are 7 habits I picked up to stay on track and get more done with less time.

1. Wake-up Early

Be the first one to wake-up in your household. I like to give myself at least 30 minutes to an hour of time before my family gets up. It gives me time to spend time on myself so that when they get up I can focus on them. For me this is usually around 5:30 - 6 am.

Here is some extra reading material from a research study Christopher Randler composed showing that morning people are more proactive, upbeat and positioned for success than night owls.

2. Journal

Although, this isn't something that always comes easy for everyone it does provide a free flow of thoughts about family and business that isn't structured in any manner. Take time to reflect on periods of time to better understand where you were and how you got to where you currently are. Keeping present while also being reflective.

3. Make a list

Include this into your evening or morning routine. Take a sheet of paper and write at the top all of the things you would like to accomplish. Then take the top 3 things and create a schedule for the day that is dedicated to accomplishing those goals.

I prefer to map out my entire day depending on what I need to accomplish. I will list out everything I want to do from 7am - 4pm and dedicate a specific amount of time to each task.

4. Stay active

Find something outside of your work and family routine that focuses on your physical health. Believe it or not, including physical activity into your daily routine could be one of the most important things you do with your day.

Monika Guszkowska states in her research on the effects of exercise on anxiety, depression and mood that exercise improves mental health by reducing anxiety, depression, and negative mood and by improving self-esteem and cognitive function. Exercise has also been found to alleviate symptoms such as low self-esteem and social withdrawal.

5. Turn of your email and phone

Set aside time in your day that you put turn on an unavailable message for your email and go offline. Also, place your phone on do not disturb. During this time focus on those 3 items that the most import tasks for moving forward with your business.

Extra thoughts...

1. Digital tools I use
  1. Google Keep - for checklists
  2. Evernote - note taking
  3. Google calendar
  4. Google voice - separate business number on my cell phone so I can turn it off in the evenings
2. One habit I would like to add to my daily routine is meditation.
3. Books to read
  1. Indistractable - by Nir Eyal
  2. Thinking, Fast and Slow - by Daniel Kahneman
  3. The 4-hour Workweek - by Tim Ferriss
  4. Atomic Habits - by James Clear