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What Not to do to Get More Done

What Not to do to Get More Done

    There are many great articles that tell you what to do in order to get things done. Some advocate very practical steps, like breaking the task into smaller pieces, or delegate more. Others are more high-level, about maintaining discipline or mindfulness and gratitude. For the record, I highly recommend such approaches, and use them myself.

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    Not doing gives you more time to do

    One of the most powerful tools I have found in my quest for greater productivity and effectiveness is to look for what I can stop or avoid doing, since this frees up time and energy which can be used for really important stuff. So, without further ado, if you want to get more done, try not doing the following:

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    1. Pointless email. I know, I know. You think every email you get is important, but really it’s not. Try cutting back checking your email to twice a day, and never look at email first thing in the morning, before you have a chance to set your direction for the day. Why? Most email really isn’t that important, but crafting thoughtful responses takes up a lot of time, and really doesn’t get much done. This is the junk food of  the productivity world, it fills you up without nourishing you. This goes for both personal and work email.
    2. Reading your pointless email during a meeting. As if email isn’t bad enough, now you’re reading it during a meeting, when you should be participating?! Total waste of time, yours and theirs. Get involved or get out.
    3. Useless meetings If you’re not contributing something or gaining useful insight, then speak up, or get out, or say no next time this person calls one. Chances are you aren’t the only person who thinks  that way, so you’ll be seen as a real get-things-done kinda guy or gal.
    4.  Complaining. So yes, it feels good to blow off some steam and vent about the boss, your finances, your spouse, but in the end, it only reinforces a counterproductive mindset: that they are the problem and you are a victim. So just stop. Instead, try to see things from their perspective, and start looking for a solution, instead of griping.
    5. Watching TV. There are some TV shows that actually improve your ability to get things, but for the most part, TV is an anaesthetic; it zones you out and leaves you more tired, not relaxed. So, rather than watch TV, go out and do something useful, put on some music and straighten up your desk, or write a letter or an article (or that book you’ve always dreamed of!), or practice a musical instrument. Think about it from this angle: no one, on their deathbed, wishes they had watched more TV.
    6. Hanging around negative people, or people who indulge in the above behaviors. You become more and more like the people you spend time with. Think about that. If you hang around with people who gripe and complain, or who work hard and don’t get much done (or don’t work hard and don’t get much done), you will become, and remain, one of them.
    So, what do you do if you are not doing these things above? That’s up to you, but you will find that when your time and energy isn’t being sucked up by trivialities you will be able to take on and accomplish the sorts of rewarding and satisfying challenges that you had previously only dreamed of.
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    More by this author

    Dave Kaiser

    An Executive Coach who helps people make better use of their time, from productivity to living their life's mission.

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    Last Updated on July 3, 2020

    6 Things To Do Every Day To Ensure You Stick To Your Goals

    6 Things To Do Every Day To Ensure You Stick To Your Goals

    Sticking to your goals can sometimes be challenging. We all want better health, better careers, and better jobs, and we want to cast an impression on everyone that we are living fulfilled lives.

    Yet to reach our goals and make every minute of our time count requires commitment, consistency, and hard work. Setting goals is one thing, but sticking to them is another. We have to observe certain daily practices if we want to get the best out of ourselves.

    Here are 6 things that you have to ensure daily to reach your goals.

    1. Involve Others

    You have to be accountable for the actions you are committing yourself to. Involve everyone around you, get them engaged, and talk to them on how they can help you accomplish your goals.

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    When you involve others you feel, you have a responsibility towards them as well as yourself. Every day, make sure you are accountable for sticking to your goals. By joining groups or engaging others, you have more motivation to reach your goals.

    For example, if you want to read more, try joining a book club. If you want to be a better entrepreneur, join an entrepreneurial organization.

    2. Visualize the Rewards

    Reaching a goal can be challenging and sometimes, it can be overwhelming. When the journey becomes tough and difficult, try to stick to visualizing your successes every day.

    Wake up to visualize what rewards you will get from sticking to meeting your goals. If you want to lose some pounds, visualize yourself already underweight and benefiting from being underweight. The mind has a way of channeling your body and intentions to sticking to your goals and reaching them.

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    3. Break Down Your Goals

    Try to break down your goals into tiny chunks. The smaller the size of the goals, the more willing and prepared you are to meet them.

    For example, if you find it difficult to get out of the house and take a workout at the gym, why not try to break the goal into making sure you are always dressed for the gym daily? By doing this, you demonstrate that you are moving in the right direction, and you can keep this momentum so you can meet the larger goal.

    4. Reward Yourself

    For every progress you make daily towards reaching your goals, try to vindicate and reward yourself. By doing this you appreciate yourself and the hard work you have put in for the day.

    When you reward yourself, you program yourself to benefit from a larger reward in the future. You also propel yourself to gain daily rewards, which can be enticing and motivating. Rewarding yourself serves as a form of positive reinforcement that reinforces your mind and behavior to stick to your goals and stay motivated.

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    5. Measure Your Progress

    It is easy to become frustrated when you are not getting instant results. Change can be slow and rewards are not always immediate. Still, progress can be measured even in tiny bits, so take time to look back at where you are coming from.

    You don’t have to feel depressed about not making that major progress in an instant. But when you journal or snap pictures to document your progress, no matter how small, you will feel grateful and elated to see what difference you have made from where you are coming from up until now.

    6. Believe in the Possibilities

    If you don’t even believe in the possibility of reaching your goals, how can you expect yourself to stick to your goals in the first place?

    By believing in the possibilities of accomplishing a goal or task, you increase your chance of reaching it and eradicating whatever roadblocks or challenges you may face. Believe in what you can achieve.

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    What self-belief has over self-control is that while self-control can be depleted but self-belief cannot. We all have an enormous reservoir of how much we can believe in ourselves.

    With believing in ourselves comes perseverance, determination, and desire to reaching our goals. Every day, understand that what you need to keep going is your belief toward achieving your goals. Your goals are reachable if you think you can reach them!

    Final Words

    Due to circumstances in life, people tend to abandon some of their goals in life. You may also feel this way sometimes. In that case, just come back to this article and remember the 6 ways you can help yourself stick to your goals.

    People don’t always reach their goals, but you will never know if you can reach them if you don’t stick to them in the first place. As long as you stick to your goals, there will always be the possibility of you achieving them!

    More Tips on How to Stick to Your Goals

    Featured photo credit: Kelly Sikkema via unsplash.com

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