Let start with a simple question, shall we?
How exactly does productivity get you the result you want?
Because the result is the goal in the end, right?
Sure. You’re not hunched over your desk, racking your brain for ideas, building a product or business simply because you have nothing else to do. You expect to get results, new clients, or break new ground in record time.
Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but sometime in the future, all the time and effort you’ve put into doing what you love had better pay off.
Except, what if it doesn’t?
What if your entire understanding of productivity and getting a tangible result is wrong?
What if all the time and effort you’re investing in creating the life you want never had the slightest chance of providing a benefit?
It would be a tragedy, right?
And yet I believe that what’s happening to most people, chances are it might be happening to you too.
Is it because being productive is a fad or worse? No, I believe productivity is totally justified, and if done in the right way, the result is breathtaking.
But that rarely happens, and there are lots of reasons why, but it would almost take writing a book to explain them all. The biggest reason why most people end up with a crappy result even if they are working hard is that a lot of people are being affected by the productivity dilemma.
Allow me to explain.
Most people are being sabotaged by the productivity dilemma because they are often so emotionally attached to the task at hand that they are not willing to let go. After all, they created it, nurtured it; they understand every detail, and in their mind, nobody can do this important task as well as they can.
So they learn time management, plan a daily routine, and do it all alone.
But what if I said to you that there are more opportunities on the horizon, bigger deals to close, but you can’t get them because you’re stuck with a day to day routine. Maybe you think if you work harder and take a time management course, you can handle everything.
Want my honest view on that?
Though you might be successful at doing all this, it surely won’t get you the result you want, or the progress will be slow, to say the least; trust me I’ve been there, done that.
So what’s the answer? Well, let’s get into that right away.
1. Focus On What You Do Best
That’s it; you heard that right, If you want to double your productivity, you must focus on what you do best and let others do what they do best.
Ask yourself, what are the activities that you do brilliantly? I’m talking about tasks that give you extraordinary results. Do you know what they are yet? Great, those are the tasks you should be doing.
If you don’t, you’ll create an intense stress level for yourself, and it might just be enough to make you burn out.
So what should you do with the other tasks that are holding you back? Good question. And the answer is to find one of those ‘others,’ who do it best and get them to help you do it.
Let’s take a look at the world of soccer for a moment; each player has their own focus, a unique role where they do what they do best. And most of the players who work hard on their unique role generate an outstanding result.
What will happen if you play a striker in a defending role? Of course, you already know the result, though the striker can play the defending role for a short period, he can’t be effective and efficient playing that particular role for the long term.
Let a striker play a striking position, and a defender plays a defending position; it’s like the famous saying: “give what belongs to Caesar to Caesar.”
The same applies to you; when you focus your willpower and ability on what you do best, you will eventually reap a big reward.
Dan Sullivan, the founder of The Strategic Coach, says, if you spend too much time working on your weaknesses, all you end up with is a lot of strong weaknesses.
Spending your time in such activity won’t enrich your life; it just keeps you average. So it’s crucial to clarify your strength from your weakness.
What are the tasks you enjoy doing? Take some time to write them down. What are the tasks you’re struggling with presently? Write them down too.
Now you can focus on the one you do best, build more strength in those areas, and look for someone who can help you with the one you’re struggling with.
Don’t fall into the do it all alone syndrome, two is better than one, and if you can get someone to help you do things you’re not convenient with, outsource it to them. Doing that will help you reduce pressure and increase productivity and focus!
2. Sort Out Your Activities By Removing Noise
Most of the things we attempt every day are full of noise, with so many things craving our attention.
It’s been research-proven that over 10,000 ads are being displayed to an average America every day. It seems believable to me.
You see them on the highway signposts, hear them on radio commercials, see them on television or your grandma who just saw a new ad that offered a new opportunity for what you can do to succeed faster is motivated to share with you!
In this present age of Information overload, It’s hard to focus and be productive.
The solution is to narrow down your focus by removing every other thing that feels like noise to you.
You can begin by listing all the tasks you do daily; get a notepad, and write them down. If you can’t remember all the tasks you do every day, don’t worry, it’s another sign of doing too much. List the tasks as you do them during the day.
Now figure out the ones you need to know and do to get to where you’re going and focus on those things alone, don’t get yourself caught up in the sea of noise which can lead to experiencing more stress as a result of work and information overload.
If you don’t narrow things down, you will probably create more stress for yourself, ending up getting busy whilst getting nowhere.
If you want to reduce stress and double productivity, narrowing down is the way to go.
3. The Question To Ask Yourself
The third thing to do is to ask yourself this question. Are you a Starter or a Finisher?
You probably do both to some degree, but which one do you do more often? Because you see, it’s easy to start a project — build a blog or start writing a book — but to finish it with an excellent result is what separates the professionals from the amateurs.
If you don’t complete a task before moving to another one, you’ll be opening yourself to more stress and unhappiness. Why? Soon enough, you’ll get so many things uncompleted, and you might feel you’re all over the places. That can Increase stress and sabotage your happiness.
So in other to double productivity, make sure you complete one task before moving to the next one. If you’re reading a book, complete it before taking another one. That way, you’re focus and can organize all your thoughts together.
But Cephas, what if the book becomes tedious in the middle and I don’t feel like reading it anymore?
Good question. I recommend you analyze a task thoroughly before getting into it to see if it worth the time and attention you’re about to devote to it.
If it’s a book, then you might want to scan through first, before devoting time to read through the whole book.
All I am saying is, make sure you’re able to conclude that something is worth your time before devoting your attention to it.
You don’t want to be a good starter only; you want to be a good finisher also.
If you carefully practice all the things mentioned above, you’ll double your productivity in no time.
Why don’t you start right now?