Due to the onset of COVID-19 restrictions and the falling oil price. I received a weeks notice from my employer.
As the entire office relocated to their homes and employed new working practices there were intial bottle necks.
So I got an eleventh hour reprieve and issued with a casual work from home, remote login till the end of June. Saved!
To be honest. I imagined 2-3 days a week work, the opportunity to get some jobs done around the house, gain some brownie points from my wife.
Also some time to make a start on that book Ive always threatened to write.
And in the present perilous economical enviroment develop my online business so I can start making some money. Enough so that someday I could replace my day job.
Here is how everything played out for you step-by-step
Step 1: Priorities – the cracks started to develop in our relationship
An immediate flow of work stated to come in from my company, to tight deadlines, before I even had chance to set up my workstation. No softstart here!
My wifes to-do list was growing ‘arms and legs’. Glue and clamp the cracked table, take the piano to the tip, prune trees, clean pool and fit new pool gates.
Any hope of doing what I’d like to do, went right out of the window.
OK: So complete overwhelm!
Step 1: Lets align my priorities here! 🚦
- What I MUST DO above everything else and what’s VERY IMPORTANT : Are the bookable hours for my job and exercise, a 5:45am run with the boys, 3 times a week. (not neccesarily in that order!)
- My wifes job list, although is NOT IMPORTANT to me, make it so. Just like the cracks in the table, a fractured personal relationship will destroy your productivity. This is where WE have to be smart so I DELEGATE: Airtasker to remove the piano, solicite some help from my son, to clamp and glue the table top, and fit the pool gates. Anything non essential on my wifes list, or mine, DELETE at this time.
- Whats important to me but not urgent: Are my passion projects. Writing a book and building an online business. Any time left, no matter how small I’d like to keep chipping away at these pursuits. Im not a writer, but learning a framework for writing an article (like this blog post). If you can do all the set up for an online business and have it delivering a passive income for you. If I had only worked 2-3 days a week. I could of supplemented that income by working online.
So getting any task done, as quickly as poosible, whats the most productive way?
Step 2: Time management – Get stuff done that you want to do. ⏲️
I signed up to an email challenge to write a book in 30 days, allocating just 30minutes a day.
I received an email everyday, and took action from the prompts.
Challenges are a great way to get results. In my case $100 for one on one contact with a New York Times best selling author. I found that support invaluable in the first week. but once I found my feet I just did the work.
OK: for such a massive challenge and so little time. how do I get shit like this done?
- By timeblocking 20 mins with a 5 minute break and get ‘in flow’
- I used this technique to write, this my first blog post. by focus, outlining, timeblocking 20mins for each step, then edit.
So getting any task done, in a controlled way so you dont over run as quickly as poosible. Whats the most productive way?
Step 3. Communcation – Comments and feedback with my paying work. 🔊
Back to my day job. I received a ‘mark up’ for some work. I thought I fully understood what was required and worked all day and submitted finished (or so I thought).
Only to receive comments, that wholesale changes were required, and still wanted for tomorrow. So I went back to work after dinner, got up the following day at 5am to complete the changes. Yet still only able to book 8 hours.
Get it right first time. How you can stop major re-work, burning hours without the deadline changing or being paid for it.
OK: The technique I used would ensure I never got caught out
like this again.
- As soon as I had something to show. I’d send it back for comments. At times I felt like I was exposing my lack of understanding of the task at hand. Or that the recipient would’ve of expected more from me.
- I’m encouraging feedback here. Am I on the right lines?
Is something to be added or deleted?
So getting any task done, without any distractions as quickly as poosible. Whats the most productive way?
Step 4: Focus – Shiny object Syndrone awareness 💎
We’d bought an aeropress, coffee grinder and a kilo of our favourite coffee shop beans. Because what would be do if we couldnt get a barista made coffe every morning!
One morning, well before work. I was making my coffee, checking my emails when one jumped out at me, that I felt compelled to view.
I spotted a jaw dropping offer. A guaranteed 4 x your intial investment
to build an internet product delivery system. Classic shiny object syndrone.
OK: So now I was distracted. how do I re-focus?
- It good to get distracted beacuse our brains are hard-wired to crave something new. But what distractions am I talking about here? Your personal phone and laptop notifications?
But what happens if all these tasks build up, and we get stressed out and overloaded?
Step 5: All Burned out! 🔥
I’ve been very grateful to still be in work over the Covid lockdown. Even though its been access all areas, from 4.30 am to Midnight. Monday thru Friday and weekends.
Employing all these productivity techniques I havent been tired. I’ve been energised. In part, being able to make progress on my passion projects.
But if you are feeling stressed out/burnt out. Whats the final technique I would recommend?
Simply reducing the number of decisions you make for the day!
Don’t make the decision of what clothes to wear and stay in your pyjamas!😉