6 benefits an entrepreneur can enjoy by hiring a business coach

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As a successful entrepreneur, you probably know exactly what you want and how to get it. You are driven, determined and a self-starter. So if you have all these great qualities, why would you need a coach? As it turns out, there are more than a few benefits of hiring a business coach.

When you decided to become and entrepreneur, you started with amazing dreams of how fantastic the future would be. You would stop trading time for money. No one explained to you how hard it was going to be did they?

HAVE A LOOK AND SEE…

I met Amy Oldfield of Empowered Fitness http://www.efitbristol.co.uk/ for a coffee last week and whilst getting to know each other she shared with me her experience with a PT specific coach.

“I started off on a coaching programme which cost me £2,000 for 90 days. I got great results, so over a year later I then invested in the current programme I’m on. Which is £900 per month, which I have been on for 15 months. I was only earning £4,000 a month at the time.”

Amy was committed to grow her business and committed to business coaching which represented 25% of her turnover. WOW – now that’s commitment. Now 4 years on she is an award-winning personal trainer, she’s reaping the rewards of her investment,  and is planning opening another gym location.

HAVE ANOTHER LOOK & SEE:

I met with a new business coaching client only this morning and she told me that following her first strategy session last month, her turnover had increased by £1000, 50% since we last met, and she had only implemented a fraction of what we discussed. She’s thrilled and I’m super proud 🙂 

So back to the 6 benefits you can enjoy as an entrepreneur

1. Be clear and on purpose.

When you decide to become an entrepreneur, you start with great dreams and aspirations of growing a business, hoping to achieve great things. As time passes you get drawn into the minutia and the drama, you get so busy running the day-to-day you forget or worst of all, don’t make time for the strategy! It is hard running your own business. It can overwhelm the best of us!  Working with a coach will help you raise your head from the day-to-day business drama, and take time to sit back and look at the bigger picture. Your coach will get you to start thinking about the future, where do you see yourself and your business, and get you to take action and act on this vision, by developing a winning strategy that you can execute with confidence

 

2. Figure out what success looks like for you.

Your goals, your successA good coach will help you define what success looks like and help you frame your thinking. Remember that success is not necessarily measured only in financial terms.  Set a range of strategic success, I always used to use the KISS list – key indicators of strategic success, but make them your own, they need to facilitate an emotional reaction – if your business “why” makes you cry – it’s absolutely the correct measure.

3. Ensure accountability.

A business coach will not only push you and challenge you to do and achieve your best, but will also hold you accountable for your actions. It’s easy to procrastinate – a great coach will call you out, hold you accountable and hold your toes to the fire. They’ll be able to differentiate fear of something new versus just feeling uncomfortable about a new way forward and a new direction.

 

4. Understanding & support

It’s lonely being self-employed, so its great to have someone to talk to who isn’t your partner or your best mate. You need an unbiased sounding board who has your interest at heart but who will also challenge your thinking. They will support you in highlighting your “best bits” and identify and help you work on the areas of challenge.

Often entrepreneurs need to project their best image – all of the time. It can be exhausting and puts a great deal of pressure to be “on it” 24/7, combined with the need to be present on social media – it is a lot of pressure and stops the real person with the real weakness acknowledging and working on those areas that need work, development and support. In a coaching relationship it is a confidential, no judgement setting. Opening up and releasing your issues, worries, your “fear list” is cathartic and enlightening.

Once you are consciously conscious of your areas of development, what triggers your emotions and your reactions,  managing yourself and your stress levels is simpler.

 

5. Support to get done whatever it takes!

To be successful and get to where you haven’t been before is what defines the success of the entrepreneur. A great coach will motivate and encourage you, you’ll be 10 feet tall and bullet proof! They’ll also point out what needs work and improving, remember they are your cheerleader not your critic. Getting to grip with the tough stuff means going to work on yourself, often on the areas that haven’t been tackled before. Its tough, it challenging and it is most definitely worth it.

 

6. Develop your thinking and gain a new perspective.

When you are stuck in the hamster wheel that is running and growing a business, you may often feel stuck, unchallenged and in need new direction. The right business coach will help you gain perspective of your current situation and will provide you with alternative approaches and a different perspective. To be successful you need to do what others are not willing to do, so you need to  S T R E T C H  your thinking.

I love the quote by Albert Einstein who said:

“Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking we used when creating them.”

A great business coach will challenge your thinking hold your toes to the fire and encourage you to stretch yourself further than you would have done on your own!

 

Hugs…

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The Master Fixer

PS: For a daily boost of motivation, support, a challenge and for making a difference with you or your business, please join us on the Master Fixer Community https://www.facebook.com/groups/1335341783184247

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Got what it takes to be a business athlete

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World class athletes report they fulfil over 90% of their potential, however non-athletes in senior positions in business typically report they fulfil around 40%. This is a shocking statistic and yet the principles and practices used in sport can be easily adapted and transferred to the business world. So many sports professionals go on to become motivational speakers – that isn’t just a coincidence!

Businesses with business athletes often have a high-performance culture,  one with consistently higher business performance with clear vision, goal-setting, metrics for measurement. We can all train to be stronger business athletes for ourselves and our businesses.

So if you could achieve a greater rate of success you’d want to know more, wouldn’t you?

I know an elite athlete and her focus is always on success, on how to improve. She trains her body for optimal performance, she spends hours learning how to fuel her body for maximum performance and she works on her mindset to ensure her approach to succeeding – she has a crystal clear vision and she goes to work on it every single day.

When I trained for the London Marathon 2012 – I know, don’t laugh!! Well I worked with a coach – she was and is amazing. We did some physical training, I had a plan, I had homework runs, but mainly we worked on the “head stuff.” She told me that about 3 weeks before the race, when people asked me whether I would finish my answer would change for a panicked answer to a cool, calm answer of course. It worked, just as she had said it would and she was right. It’s not a coincidence that when I left her every Tuesday morning at 10am, in would walk Olympic swimmers to also train with her. She taught me vision, to have a focus and passion – and I have taken this into my business life.

VISION – Athletes learn how to visualise their success, and once you can envision it, you can achieve it. The rest is a brilliant combination of passion and focus.

FOCUS – Athletes learn to tune out the noise of self-doubt, fear and the roar of the crowd in order to accomplish their task. Focus enables you to succeed when you have prepared for that moment, and the opportunity finally presents itself.

PASSION – Athletes have a passion for what they do, it’s the passion that supports the long hours, the epic failures on the route to success and its the passion that gets you up again after falling 100 times over

Business women often tend to play small and internalise failure, what that means is when we fail we think “I am a failure” rather than I need to try a different way. This way is to develop a winning mindset, have a clear vision, a laser focus and a passion for your business that keeps you going. I love the Michael Jordan quote above, it summarises the committment, the sheer determination and the attitude of an athlete.

“It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up.” Vince Lombardi

So as a business athlete, go to work on yourself, remember it is a mindset shift that you need and it is a sheer bloody determination, and a steely vision, focus and a deep-rooted passion for success. So go and work on your business athleticism.

Hugs…

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The Master Fixer

PS: For a daily boost of motivation, support, a challenge and for making a difference with you or your business, please join us on the Master Fixer Community https://www.facebook.com/groups/1335341783184247

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Intention + Action = Results

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Commit yourself to be #allin to what you want, see it, feel it, know that it will be and watch what happens.  It  does not magically happen but your change of mindset impacts your actions, your actions become more focused, focused on what you wanted, which results in:

Intention + Action = Results  ❤️

Many people have intention, all of us want results, but it is few who take action, seize the day and take action. ACTION is what separates the talkers from the doers – so what are you? Me, I’m a professional do-er. I get stuff done. Procrastination causes me so much more stress, as the thought of doing it is so much more stressful than actually doing it. Procrastination is so paralysing, it actually causes me emotional discomfort.

“It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.”
Leonardo Da Vinci

So set your intention, start small with the intention or goal setting, set 3 and definitely no more than 6 goals and go to work. Take great pleasure in ticking them off when they’re done. I’d really recommend writing them down on old-fashioned pen and paper, there is something so much more satisfying about ticking them off, versus clicking a button on a list app!

Reframe your language, delete “should” from your vocabulary. Choose to do and complete something rather than should do something! Focus on the “how” as opposed to the “if” and you will find taking action becomes simpler!

It also creates and supports a positive attitude and it will help support your action taking.

Hugs…

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The Master Fixer

PS: For a daily boost of motivation, support, a challenge and for making a difference with you or your business, please join us on the Master Fixer Community https://www.facebook.com/groups/1335341783184247

 

 

 

 

 

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9 tips to be a networking superstar!

Here’s my 9 tried and tested tips to be a networking superstar! Enjoy!

 

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Here’s the pdf: Masterfixer 9 tips networking superstar

Hugs…

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The Master Fixer

PS: For a daily boost of motivation, support, a challenge and for making a difference with you or your business, please join us on the Master Fixer Community https://www.facebook.com/groups/1335341783184247/

 

 

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5 tips to get luckier in business

luck

 

I and totally with Thomas Jefferson on this subject…

I am a great believer in luck. The harder I work the luckier I am. Thomas Jefferson.

It’s about hard work, but it is mixed with opportunity and being in the right place at the right time.  So I found this really cool calculation to get luckier….

 

Preparation + attitude + opportunity + action = luck

 

So how lucky do you want to be?

So, here is my checklist for taking your hard work and turning it into luck:

  1. Make great connections, lots of them, and keep track of them. People do business with people they know, like and trust, so get out from behind your lap top and get social. Also LinkedIn has a Tags feature, and it’s a great tool for keeping control of large sets of connections.
  2. Recognise the brilliance in the flexibility. It’s critical to have a firm foundations in your business, but you also need to stay open to new ideas and original thoughts; don’t mentally block yourself into a set and  specific business plan.
  3. Create the opportunities and meet people, discuss collaborations, make offers and discuss ideas. Talk with as many people who are relevant to your business as possible – collaborators, potential customers, partners and competitors—and listen to what they have to say. Pick their brains and find out what they know.
  4. Do take action. To turn your luck into success do the preparation, have the right attitude, create the opportunity or respond to the opportunity presents, act responsibly, act BOLDLY with conviction, act quickly but, most importantly TAKE ACTION nothing else happens  this, so seize the F**** diem!
  5. Be confident be believable and get the job done. Confidence comes from knowledge, experience and hard work, but you’ve also got to be willing to meet your challenges head-on.

Luck does exist in business, but is a skillfully put together list of opportunities and there is an element of being in the right place at the right time. The “luck” element is connecting with the right people. The “luck” is recognising the opportunities when they arise and seizing them with everything you have!  So, luck may have an element of coincidence, but it takes hard work, intelligence and most of all courage to take the action to make the luck a reality.

So go forth and get lucky…

Hugs…

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The Master Fixer

PS: For a daily boost of motivation, support, a challenge and for making a difference with you or your business, please join us on the Master Fixer Community https://www.facebook.com/groups/1335341783184247/

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8 marketing tips to get you more clients

Everyone needs clients. FACT! Whether you are producing or selling a product or you are providing we all needs clients, someone who wants what we have.

Ok so you’ve heard about the law of attraction and you’ve read about the law of supply and demand. What about the client attraction laws?

Start ups need clients and they’ll usually take any clients.Mid level businesses need more clients and more money, because now they’re not a start up and they have overheads and stuff to pay for.

Established successful businesses need fewer higher paying clients. But how does it all start? How does the start up get the first clients, the mid level get more and the established clients get their much needed VIP clients?

If getting clients was easy then marketers would be out of business.

Tip 1 Get out of the house.

If you’re reading this and you have a home based business and maybe you’re in your comfies or even your PJs, and you’re furiously posting on social media – STOP right now. Get up get dressed, put on your make up and get out of the front door and talk to real people TODAY. Yes REAL people and have a conversation with as many people as you can, but more importantly talk to 3 people about your business straight away – you will be gobsmacked the positive impact it will have on your clients, your income, your confidence and your stress levels,

Tip 2

Go and make some new friends.

Step away from the computer and go and meet new people. Join a club, take up a sport and talk to everyone, be the person that people want to talk to. Maybe go to the same coffee shop every day, so people get used to seeing you and remember to SMILE, not just have your head down in your lap top or book without making any eye contact with anyone. Make some new friends.

Do your research – where do you ideal clients hang out? Then make a plan, don’t overthink it and go and hang out at those places. It might be the library, a book club, an exhibition, a workshop, a coffee shop, the mall, a conference – go and be with your tribe.

Tip 3

Be present on social media.

You need to be present on social media, but you need to provide value. Don’t be a stalker, who watches everything and lurks in the shadows, make a positive contribution in every group and forum you are in – every single day. WARNING – set the timer for 30 minute slots, ideally 3 times a day and stick to the timer as social media is like a black hole for time management – you will lose hours if you are not conciosuly aware of your time.

Use technolofy to scheule some static post, to save you time and make it look like you’re posting interesting stuff and use your personal time slots for engagement.

Building followers and friends on social media is a long term strategy. So get involved, voice your opinion, offer advice, provide guidance and get involved. Work on your engagement and remember you MUST be consistent.

Tip 4

Be available and on task.

Set your time boundaries and stick to them, an set up automation for the “out of hours” contacts.

If you’re a start up you’ll be tempted to spend every waking hour on your business – it doesn’t work, you’ll be exhausted and burn out and you will end up resenting your business. So be clear about your time boundaries, when, where and how much you are willing to work. No one would expect you to be available 24/7.

Tip 5

Communicate succinctly.

Be able to communicate all the important details of your business in 30 seconds or less is critical. We’re all super busy and there is so much competition, you need to be able to succinctly tell people about your business quickly. Practice talking about it, record yourself, so it in the mirror and hone your skills. It’s all about making the right impression quickly. If you’re a bore your potential client will look elsewhere.

Tip 6

Be solution focused

See solutions to their issues. Your potential clients have some level of pain with their business; they are actively looking for solutions. So think outside the box, be future and forward thinking. Be empathetic and seek to understand their issues and always bring the conversation back to solution focused. Offer dynamic, positive frameworks and suggestions, be creative and suggest blue-sky thinking – that’s’ what they need a fresh set of eyes on their business issues.

 

Tip 7

Ask for referrals.

Again, people like to do business with people they know like and trust, so if a person they trust has recommended you then you have an 85% better chance of securing that person as a client. BOOM!

Tip 8

The fortune is in the follow up.

Did you know that 48% of people don’t follow up! What a tragic waste of all that hard work and effort. So build your self a simple follow up process and go to work. Remember to contact they a minimum of 12 times. Yes 12 times!!

So get your ASK into gear and get talking to people.

I’d love to know what you think…

Hugs…

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The Master Fixer

PS: For a daily boost of motivation, support, a challenge and for making a difference with you or your business, please join us on the Master Fixer Community https://www.facebook.com/groups/1335341783184247/

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Master fixer business podcast

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Its all part of a process, the process of developing a business. From initial thought, to launch and execution its all a great learning experience – a journey although I don’t love that word as its sooo overused.

I so loved reading and listening Janet Murray’s Soulful PR podcasts http://www.janetmurray.co.uk/  and was inspired to create my own, as an introduction to The Master Fixer and explain how it all came about and why I am positioned well to help busy business women get more clients, make more money and sleep better at night. Also as I hate with a capital H having my photo taken I thought I could hide behind a voice recording! Genius 🙂

Then as I have met, befriended, stalked (only joking) some amazing kick arse, incredibly successful business women I visioned a series of amazing podcasts with these women to inspire and others. So watch out for those I am super exited for these…

So, here it is my first podcast, and introduction to The Master Fixer – enjoy!

Click on the link: http://bit.ly/2lplUQL

I’d love to know what you think…

Hugs…

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The Master Fixer

PS: For a daily boost of motivation, support, a challenge and for making a difference with you or your business, please join us on the Master Fixer Community https://www.facebook.com/groups/1335341783184247/

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Magic happens when you niche

I was encouraged to niche my business offering. Niche? I exclaimed, but I can coach anyone and everyone. I don’t want to reduce the size of my market, what about the lost opportunity, the opportunity cost. But I am not a marketing expert, I am a kick arse business coach, and I AM coachable  – so I did what I was told.

Guess what happened? MAGIC happened…

It didn’t happen overnight, my niche evolved and became:

“I help busy business women get more clients, make more money, and sleep better at night.”

The feedback I had was that women resonated with different parts of the message, yes they were busy, ALL said they wanted more $$ and they were overwhelmed with the need for more sleep. It worked – hurrah! The words didn’t come straight away, they did evolve.

Then, there I was happily beavering away when I got a semi sarcastic message from a guy, asking why I didn’t work with men. What happened, well I had a crisis of confidence, started questioning what I was doing and it paralysed my action and activity for a couple of days, whilst I questioned what I was doing. STUPID ALERT!!!

He didn’t want to work with me, he was simply having a well positioned point at me and I allowed it to push all my buttons in a bad way. So learn from my mistake and my lack of confidence.

Decide who your ideal clients are, your niche and go to work.

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If you’re still not convinced here’s some cautionary things to think about – you can’t say you weren’t told!! 🙂

When you don’t niche these things happen:-

  • You can appear as a jack of all trades and master of NONE! People won’t be able to relate to you as you have no specialism and have diluted skills, like everyone else.
  • Marketing becomes vague as you try to communicate many different solutions to many different people, resulting in lack of connection with your audience. Since you should be spending at least 80% of your time marketing, you want to make sure it’s effective and targeted.
  • Your message becomes diluted and people become confused on whether you’re speaking to hem or not. A confused mind does NOTHING!
  • You can become disconnected with your ‘why’ your raison d’etre, the real reason you decided to do what you’re doing. This will come through energetically in everything you do and you will gradually lose your momentum and motivation. 
  • Telling people what you do is hard work, and your audience can get confused about whether you can help them. So they go elsewhere.

When you decide to niche, this will happen:-

  • You become a revered EXPERT in your field and you are able build trust with your audience. People like to do business with people they know, like and trust. Your client base will increase and your sales will explode.
  • You get really specific about who your ideal client is in order to target the right people who will benefit the most from your services. Less wasted time and more productive! 
  • When you know your ideal client, you know exactly how, when and what to communicate with them.
  • Your marketing becomes more effective and targeted towards your ideal client, and saves you time and money.
  • Your communication about you and your business becomes easier and enjoyable. Your happiness will translate inmto your message.
  • You know what opportunities are right for your business and what isn’t!
  • You become aligned with your story and mission and it shines bright in your communication.
  • It leverages you apart from the competition.
  • You can easily identify your unique selling points and celebrate them.
  • Your ideal client knows that you can help them with their specific problem or need.
  • People know how to refer to you as they know who you are, what you specialise in and who  and when to refer to you.

If that isn’t enough to convince you that niching is the route to success then try this for size. When you niche, it not only improves your marketing, makes writing content, creating packages and products that sell super easy, it’s all because you’re in alignment with your passion and purpose. Imagine waking up everyday with that excitement and fire in your belly to fulfil your purpose and mission. To know that what you are doing that day will change someones life. 

So having clarity on your niche is FUNDAMENTAL to building a SUCCESFUL business. So is that is something you desire, then niche it baby!

Top tips for finding clarity on your Niche

  1. Focus where you are most inspired and excited.
  2. Don’t feel a duty to stick with an area you have the most expertise, or where you’ve spent the most time or money. Althought it may feel sensible and easier. It’s critical to feel inspired by what you do.  
  3. Niche in an area that makes you smile and lifts you up.
  4. What is it that you could talk about for hours?
  5. What do you feel most in need to tell people about?
  6. What is it that you want so badly for others to experience?
  7. What helped you the most in your life/career up until now?
  8. What are you known for? What do your freinds rely on you for?

Follow these tips and magic will happen in your business too! 

Hugs…

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The Master Fixer

PS: For a daily boost of motivation, support, a challenge and for making a difference with you or your business, please join us at https://www.facebook.com/lindamasterfixer/

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How to grow your business in 9 steps!

lindadaviescarr-33I read this on an email I received and thought how poignant and how true it is. 

No wonder why everyone is so confused…

We have become a nation of people who don’t search for data we “google” it. This massive iconic brand has become a verb in our language.

I google, you google, he googles… get it?

So if you want to know something ask Google or YouTube but get into the habit of seeking information from the internet.

Anyway, here’s the thing I just googled…“How to grow your business?”

Guess what? I got 71 MILLION pages of information to sift through!

No wonder you’re all overwhelmed. This was the top 8 tips from one site:

1.         Open another location. … (how do you know your current one is right)

2.         Offer your business as a franchise. (unless it already works without you please don’t do this)

3.         License your product. … (not bad if it’s already selling well)

4.         Form an alliance. … (with whom and why)

5.         Diversify. … (into what?)

6.         Target other markets. (what’s wrong with the one you have)

7.         Win a government contract. (Wow Really)

8.         Merge with or acquire another business (so you have 2 businesses that don’t work properly and work twice as hard?)

 All terrible advice if taken in isolation and without context. In other words –  Just do a bunch of “stuff” and you’ll somehow magically grow your business

Well, let me ask… How’s that been working for you? Exactly!!!

The reason why so many businesses are so overwhelmed and struggling is because of really crap advice like this.

You want to grow your business? Here, I’ll give you the answer and it won’t take sorting through 71 million pages of information to get it.

The first step in growing your business is to know what to focus on so you need to give your business a strategic health check. Better still get in touch with someone who can help you. Has business experience, can challenge you and who can hold you accountable:

*** BLATANT ADVERT  ***

So if you are feeling overwhelmed, confused and would love to get more clients, make more money and sleep better at night then message me on my FB page https://www.facebook.com/lindamasterfixer/ and see all the great things people are saying about The Master Fixer

or drop me an email to linda@masterfixer.co.uk and lets set up a FREE STRATEGY CALL and talk about what you think you need.

Hugs…

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The Master Fixer

PS: For a daily boost of motivation, support, a challenge and for making a difference with you or your business, please join us at https://www.facebook.com/lindamasterfixer/

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Busy is like a drug…

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Years ago I had a friend of a friend who, in his 20s was always SO busy. If you wanted to see them  they would be “booked up for months!” and if we wanted to make weekend plans, we arrange to see them 3 months in advance. Where is he now do you think. Well he had a brilliant well paid job, the amazing holidays, the flash car, a beautiful partner and gorgeous children. Then he had anxiety attacks, lost his confidence, lost his job and well you can guess the rest.

My immaturity and nativity and I guess my lack of confidence left me feeling as though to be successful / important then I should be that busy, and if I wasn’t then well, I just wasn’t popular or important enough! Ohh the ignorance of youth…

When I run into friends and work colleagues, they will usually ask me, “How are you? ” My reply is often, “Busy,” or “You know, keeping my head above water,” or “Keeping all the plates spinning.” Why do I answer like this?

It’s a way of saying that I am diligent in all my various duties, but more likely it is a way to proudly state that I am significant. I like to be busy and I like to brag that I am busy.

Meredith Fineman in the Harvard Business Review writes,

“Here’s the thing: it’s harming how we communicate, connect, and interact. Everyone is busy, in different sorts of ways. Maybe you have lots of clients, or are starting a new business, or are taking care of a newborn. The point is this: with limited time and unlimited demands on that time, it’s easy to fill your plate with activities constantly. But this doesn’t mean that you should.

To assume that being ‘busy’ (at this point it has totally lost its meaning) is cool, or brag-worthy, or tweetable, is ridiculous. By lobbing these brags, endlessly puffing our shoulders about how ‘up to my neck’ we are, we’re missing out on important connections with family and friends, as well as personal time. In addition to having entire conversations about how busy we are, we fail to share feelings with friends and family, ask about important matters, and realize that the ‘busy’ is something that can be put on hold for a little while.”

So I guess the question is when is “busy” too busy? BUSY is a highly addictive drug, it makes us feel good, needed, effective. It has a short lived impact and gives us a short timed “high”. The adrenalin rush is good but short lived. However “busy” can be translated.

I’m busy = I’m important.
Being busy gives people a sense they’re needed and significant.

I’m busy = I’m giving you an excuse.
Saying that you’re busy is a handy way to outsource your responsibility to your irresponsibility. Since you’re always distracted, you don’t have to do anything for anybody.

I’m busy = I’m afraid.
Look above at the “I’m important” part. Whether the speaker knows it or not, complaining of busyness is a subtle cry for help, one that reassures us that yes, we are in demand.

I’m too busy = I’m making something else my priority.

What does YOUR “too busy” say about your situation? Are you simply a “busy fool?”

How to get rid of busyness

Of course, it’s a interdependent issue. It’s hard to have downtime if your bosses subscribe to what Anne Marie Slaughter calls our time macho culture, “a relentless competition to work harder, stay later, pull more all-nighters, travel around the world and bill the extra hours that the international date line affords you.”

But don’t let that excuse suffice. You can convince your bosses/ friends/ colleagues/ children –if you know how to structure and have the right conversation.

  • Busyness is not a virtue. It will not serve you well.
  • Busyness is a shield, a cover, it covers up what is really going on.

I’d recommend checking your priorities and managing your work load effectively. This takes work, effort and, guess what –  time.

With stress & cancer on the increase take some time and think about it, I have found it’s all about balance and priorities.

I’m going to show you how to get rid of busy work, focus on the real work and set yourself up for continued success. Let’s get to it!

Define “Busy Work”

You haven’t been doing busywork your whole life (even though it might feel like it) and there is a way to remove the majority of the busy work that’s getting in the way of your real work.

The truth is responding to email four hours of the day is probably not part of your job description (for some people it might be). The first step to getting rid of busyness is to define what tasks are causing your busy symptoms. Here is a list of common tasks that can turn into busy work:

  • Responding to Email
  • Sorting Paperwork
  • Attending Meetings
  • Making Phone Calls
  • Checking Social Media

Action: Take a few minutes and write down what tasks have turned into busy work for you, include a estimated time per day you spend on those items.

Define “Real Work”

Now that you have a list of tasks that are considered busy work, it’s time to start focusing on the “real work” that fits your job description and makes you feel fulfilled and accomplished.

Defining this work can be a challenge, because most of your productive and fulfilling work has been mixed with the mundane. The 80/20 Rule states that “roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes”. Meaning 20% of the tasks you do every day make up 80% of your desired outcomes.

In order to figure out your real work, answer the following questions:

  • What is your job description?
  • What tasks get you the biggest results?
  • What do you feel is real work?
  • When do you feel most alive at work? What are you doing during those times?

If your job description has become unclear, it’s important to rethink your daily strategy.  You might need to have a conversation with your boss (even if you are your own boss!). The answer to the questions above should help guide the conversation.

Defining real work will make all the difference. Knowing what you are supposed to do and what you’re not supposed to do can transform what happens on a daily basis.

Limit Yourself

There is only so much you can do in a day, and too often you try and do as much as possible until the work day is over. According to Parkinson’s Law, “work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.” So when you decide your entire to-do list, email inbox, and project list are available for you to try and complete each day, it will be impossible to define what work will get done, and when. Trying to mark everything by priorities and hoping the items with deadlines get noticed today is dangerous territory. If you ever decide to build priorities into your day, pick one priority and work on it.

Otherwise, limiting yourself to a few, I’d recommend 3 major tasks and projects each day can take you from always trying to play catchup, to staying ahead of schedule.

Get Laser Focused

In order to limit yourself to a handful of projects each day, you have to get laser focused.

Back to Parkinson’s law. I recommend setting aside meaningful time for each of your daily projects. The goal here is to define how long (you think) each project will take so Parkinson’s law can come into effect. If you say this report will take thirty minutes to complete, set a timer for thirty minutes and get to work.

Eat the Frog

Now that you have defined your real work, limited yourself to a small number of projects each day, and getting laser focused: you have to eat the frog.

“Eat the frog” is a phrase made popular by Bryan Tracy. Think about the most difficult task or project you need to complete today and do it first: eat the frog. No one likes eating the frog, but if you do it first thing in your day, you can overcome procrastination and boost your mental stamina.

Too often the hardest work is held off until Friday afternoon, but doing the hardest work first will leave your day and week feeling fulfilled and gratifying. It’s not easy to “eat the frog”, but it’s worth it.

Building the practice of realizing your “frog” and successfully completing that task as soon as possible every day is a unique skill that will transform your workday.

Build a Routine

Staying in a constant state of being busy comes from blurred lines and lack of consistency in your day. Email is checked periodically throughout the day, reports are sent to your boss sporadically, some days you work through your lunch break, while other days you come home late (or both). The final step in this equation will help bring consistency to your week.

Creating a routine can significantly decrease your busyness and increase your productivity. Setting up a schedule for your day will increase your chances of becoming laser focused, give you the courage to eat the frog and keep yourself in check to do the work that matters most.

Here is a sample of a daily work routine:

  • 08-11: Work on one internal project (eat the frog)
  • 11-12: Email
  • 12-01: Lunch break in the park
  • 01-04: Work on one external project
  • 04-05: Clean up desk, talk with co-workers, decide on projects for tomorrow

A simple routine like this defines what type of work gets done at what time during the day. When you keep a routine like this, you set realistic expectations for the amount of work you can get done in a day. You also let others around you know when you are available to talk, take emails, or just catch up. Building a routine is a great way to bring everything together and get a handle on this label of being busy.

A solid routine helps you work on real work on a consistent basis while helping you avoid the busy work. Creating a routine also helps you get laser focused at different periods throughout the day.

Instead of trying to run a marathon, think of your work in sprints, and set up your schedule accordingly. You can also build the confidence and mental energy to successfully eat your frogs day in and day out with the proper routine. Overall, a routine will help you do your best work on an ongoing basis.

So the next time someone asks “how have you been?”, instead of say “oh, just busy”, you can say “I’ve been so productive!”

Hugs…

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The Master Fixer

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