Strategies for Controlling Time
By Andrea Conway
Most entrepreneurs feel out of control about time — there's never enough of it. But if you make clear intentions to control your time, the Law of Attraction helps you fulfill them. Here are 5 simple ways to take back control of your 24 hours each day.
Strategy #1 - Clearly identify what you don't want. Huh? Isn't it obvious? It may sound unnecessary, but here's why this step is important...
The Law of Attraction often works by FIRST showing us what we don't want. We've been getting what we don't want because knowingly or not (and we're usually not aware of it), we've been vibrating with ideas such as "I never have enough time," or "If I only had more time." Strategy #1 gives us the opportunity to see clearly that what we DON'T WANT has been showing up in our lives, and we've perpetuated it by continuing to focus on it.
A strategy #1 statement might be: "I don't want to keep feeling so exhausted and pressed for time."
Strategy #2 - Clearly identify what you do want. (Easy hint: it will be the opposite of what you don't want!).
Many people stay stuck in Strategy #1. They can talk all day about what's wrong. But if you ask them what they want, they often stare at you blankly. It's important to become crystal clear on what you DO want, so that the Law of Attraction can begin to bring it to you. You may find it's not that easy at first. But the sooner you learn how to focus on what you do want, the faster Law of Attraction can respond to you.
A strategy #2 statement might be: "I want to have enough time to accomplish what's important, including time for myself, my family and my friends."
Strategy #3 - Create an "Ideal Week" schedule. Now the Law of Attraction understands what you want. But that's not quite enough by itself. You now have to TAKE ACTION, and a schedule gets you started.
Many entrepreneurs who begin Law of Attraction coaching with me do things on the fly most of the time. They're interrupt-driven. An email arrives, a child or spouse calls, the mail is delivered, a client calls, oops time to get the dental appointment...
This behavior is certain to lead to exhaustion and non-productivity. I often ask new clients to create their ideal weekly schedule. Usually they don't want to, saying it would be impossible the way their life is right now. I understand I've been there. But those are just excuses. Make the schedule. I'm not saying to live the schedule (yet). I'm only saying to make it.
Tip: Build in enough time for your most strategic tasks: visioning, planning, creating new products or services, marketing, selling. These core tasks move our business forward. Most of the rest is busywork.
Got your ideal week schedule? Great! Now... use it. Notice if it's workable or not and where you need to adjust. Don't freak out if it doesn't unfold perfectly the first time. Just correct it as best you can and try again.
Tip: You're more likely to stick to your ideal schedule if you write your schedule for the following day the evening before. Put a big star next to the 1-3 most strategic tasks you must accomplish. Then your unconscious mind is prepared for the schedule when you wake up in the morning.
A strategy #3 statement might be: "I now decide what I will do when."
Strategy #4 - Time chunk similar tasks, one task at a time. Create time chunks in your schedule.
For example: take phone calls at certain times only by appointment and check email two or three times a day at set hours (make this one change alone and you will be amazed at how much more productive you day is).
if you conduct business by phone (e.g., make sales calls or talk to clients), set aside certain times on certain days to do these tasks.
Need to write a blog post or articles? Set aside specific times to write.
Time chunking reduces multi-tasking. Multi-tasking is a sure-fire way to squander time and end your day feeling like you've been pursued through the streets of Manhattan by a pack of pit bulls on a hot day in August.
If you do one thing at a time, with focus, you complete it and feel great. Then the Law of Attraction sends you more circumstances to feel focused and complete about.
Did you know that being interrupted wastes time in two ways? First, you waste time switching gears to focus on the interruption. But worse yet, when you return to the previous task you waste time getting back up to speed with it.
Tip: When working on a focused task, such as writing a new web page, set a timer for 30-90 minutes. Just work on that task. The timer helps you feel like you're in a competition, so you stay focused. (That's how I wrote this article.)
Next: revise your ideal schedule to take advantage of time chunking.
A strategy #4 statement might be: "I follow my schedule and focus on the task at hand."
Strategy #5 - Do your most important task of the day first. When you get to your desk in the morning, do you dive right into the most important task? Few entrepreneurs do.
Most check email, make an online purchase, and scan the news headlines.
Doing mundane tasks at the start of the day diffuses your focus and makes you more likely to waste much of the day — the Law of Attraction will keep sending you distraction after distraction.
Now, because you've made the your schedule the evening before, and because you put a big star next to the strategic tasks — and scheduled them first thing — you have a much better chance of accomplishing those tasks every day.
Imagine what your life and business will look like when you know what your strategic tasks are, you do them on schedule every day and every week, and you no longer waste time during your work day.
Tip: Allow yourself to feel how productive you're becoming, and enjoy picturing and believing in the success that must follow.
Andrea Conway is the Law of Attraction marketing coach for solopreneurs and small business owners ready to make all the money they want at the business they love.