Mark and Diane were so excited! They just bought a house, or at least what was going to become a house. They bought the land, painstakingly decided on blueprints and plans, and signed all the paperwork with a deep breath and a lot of anticipation.
Now they were ready for the house to go up!
They drove by every day and watched as the big hole got dug in the ground and the foundation got laid. But it seemed like it took FOREVER.
And they were right. Foundations take time. They take time to build, they take time to structure properly if they are going to hold a house up for 100 years or more..
Mark and Diane were waiting with the anticipation of kids in a candy store… And then finally the foundation was laid! And the house went up… really fast.
It was amazing how quickly it went from foundation, to frame, to full house. And soon enough Mark and Diane were moving in, and enjoying their brand-spanking new place.
In business, things work very much the same way. Unfortunately, we often try to force the process of growing our business fast. I think everyone does it for a while before they figure out that there is a better way.
It’s like trying to get the house up before the foundations are in place. And often that means chasing after money instead of developing systems that will help you get that money easily.
These systems aren’t tactics for how to sell what you want to sell because there are tons of courses and articles on that. They go a level deeper to the foundation of your business and allow you to take what you know and become insanely and incredibly productive.
So that you can sell more, faster.
Here are 5 Systems that can lay the foundation of your business so that you can work less and profit more.
Time Blocking for Massive Productivity
One of my favorite techniques to use is time blocking. Time blocking is a technique that helps people gain massive productivity.
There are only so many things you can get done in any one day, but most of us think we can get done way more than we actually can, and then at the end of the day we feel terrible that we didn’t.
Time blocking short-circuits this nasty cycle. When you time block, you define your three most important tasks and then leave another block for all your little tasks that need to get done.
Then you mark out time on your calendar at about an hour and a half to two hours each to get these large tasks actually done. This allows you to focus on one thing at a time and increases your productivity tremendously.
The Myth of Multitasking
Speaking of distractions, let’s take a look at the myth of multitasking. Multitasking is one of the most destructive things you can do in any business. Especially when you’re trying to get things up and off the ground. It only makes you feel busy. It doesn’t actually make you productive.
But, when you start time blocking, your brain is going to want to multitask. Focus takes practice, and at the beginning, you might not have enough practice to get through a block of time on one task.
So when you come up against a task that is difficult, or not something that you want to do then your brain will tell you to look at Facebook, or Twitter, or eBay, or the NFL scores.
Don’t do it!
Put focus productivity apps on your computer (I like the chrome extension called “Focus”), turn off your phone, and set up your environment to do whatever else you need to do to keep from getting distracted.
And when you do get distracted, pause for a few moments to focus on your breathing.
Take four deep breaths and move your focus to how it feels to breathe in and out. The distracting thought will often pass and your brain will allow you to focus again.
By minimizing distractions, you will find that you get way more done and do it a lot better.
Big Rocks First
There is a principal in the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, that says to do the “big rocks first”.
One of the things this means is that you do your hardest, most difficult task of the day first.
For me that’s writing. If I don’t write first thing, then I don’t get it done. It doesn’t matter how much I enjoy the subject, or how much I want to do it – writing requires incredible concentration for me, and if I want to do it well I need to do it first.
Whatever task you like the least, do that one first and the rest of your day will go thousand times better.
Human beings simply aren’t meant to sit on their butts all day long.
In between every work session or time block, It’s a good idea to get up and move around.
For many people, this is a great opportunity to go outside and take a short walk or do a few push-ups next to their desks. I know it sounds silly, but there is a great deal of research that shows that exercise makes your brain function better.
So when you take a break move around, do something enjoyable for 10 to 15 minutes, and then get back at it.
Try the Lock-In
As humans, our brains like novelty and it’s hard to do the same thing over and over again all the time. That includes being in the same environment day after day after day.
One of the easiest ways to break out of this rut is to rent an inexpensive hotel room with Wi-Fi and work like crazy. You sometimes hear tales of writers doing this, but it works for business owners as well.
If you don’t have a foundation for productivity and actually getting things done your business, then your business will go nowhere. It’s like trying to build a house without the cement foundation already laid.
It may take a while to develop these habits but they are highly worth it.