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It seems like the more I try to tackle my life, the busier it becomes. I have always been the person that wanted to CONQUER the world, and with that comes a ton of work and distractions. I have so many ideas, and I want to do all of them, but I have found that having a routine and getting rid of distractions is the best way to start conquering the world.
You see, I have a hundred things under my belt, and it took a while to find a strategy that worked well with my type of lifestyle, but before I tell you what strategies work best for me, let me start by telling you a little about myself.
I am a wife, mother, 8th grade English teacher, a photographer, college student, and now I have added part-time blogger to the equation. Most people have told me that I am crazy, (but in a nice way, LOL) and you know, they could be right! THAT’S A LOT to accomplish, but I make it all work and at the end of the day, I can say that I LOVE my beautiful, crazy type of life!
So with that being said, my beautiful crazy life led me to this post. I wanted to talk about some things that have hurt my productivity in the past, BUT after finding a solution/strategy made my life a little less crazy and way more beautiful.
1. The Smartphone – Yes, I’m guilty of this! Who isn’t? It is my number one distractor, and if I’m not mistaken, it’s probably yours too. I teach 8th graders, and I know it’s their number one distractor because all of those apps such as Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, and any other social media platform that keep them in touch with what’s going on in the world is also hurting their grades, just like it hurts my productivity time. I’m not saying that staying in touch with what’s happening in the world is a bad thing, but I am saying that distractors can really hurt what you are wanting to accomplish. I found myself constantly looking at news articles, Facebook, and realizing an hour later that I wasn’t getting anything done except watching cat videos on YouTube. So, I had to start somewhere, and putting my phone on airplane mode for an hour or two helped a lot. I could get things done without worrying about what was going on in the world.
2. Procrastination – I have been guilty of this since high school! I wait until the last minute to get started on those huge projects that I had weeks to do. So where does procrastination come from? Is it because we fear failure? have too much on our plates? distractions? or something else? I’m not sure where mine comes from honestly, but I did realize that having a routine has helped me accomplish my projects in a more appealing schedule. I try to put those big projects at the top of my list, so I can get them done, and then not have to worry about them.
3. Repeating Mistakes – Yes, I’ve done it. I’m sure you have too. Admitting that I made a mistake was hard for me, and I was missing out on learning and growth. I finally realized that ownership shows maturity, helps with professionalism and opens the door to improvement. If you are stuck in a bind, and can’t seem to get past it, then maybe look to see what you are doing wrong, admit it, and find another way to grow.
4. Neglecting or Not Having a Routine– This is a major one for me! I never realized how important managing my time was until I did it, and it started having the best benefits. Having a routine and a set amount of time minimizes distractions, allows me to focus, and creates structure by reducing the number of decisions I must make. I recommend getting a calendar to help manage your time!
5. Response Time: I was the queen of answering emails as soon as they came into my inbox but with my stress level being at an all-time high, I decided that being queen probably wasn’t the best status to have. So, instead of answering my emails as soon as they come in, I started to set aside time each day in the evenings to check emails. Why the evening? Well, I noticed that if I checked my email in the morning time, I would find myself consumed with emails all day and forget all the important things on my to-do list. Of course, everyone is different, so mornings might be better for you!