We all want to be successful in our lives because that means that we achieved what we had aimed for. The area of our lives where success is probably measured in the easiest way is our job – we get tips, a promotion, a bonus, more customers, etc. Being successful also positively influences our self-esteem.
What makes some people more successful than others is their attitude when it comes to work – they enjoy what they do, they know how to manage time, and they know what is important and what not. So to make sure the time you spend at work is used as efficiently as possible follow these rules:
- Focus on what you want to achieve, not on what you want to avoid. This way, you make sure you keep your eyes on the finish line as all your energy and effort are focused on what you want to achieve and how you will achieve it. The more time you spend on thinking what you want, the faster you will get the task done. When you are thinking about what you want to avoid, you are spending precious time you could devote to getting something done.
- Focus on what activities create results, not the ones that keep you busy. How many times have you spent hours doing something but having nothing to show at the end? Quite often we do things that make us busy instead of doing things that create results. Sure, sometimes you need to do things that don’t create results (cleaning the office to make it look presentable for clients and customers, replying to emails, paying the bills, etc.) but make sure the majority of your time is focused on activities that create results. If possible, outsource the activities that are not directly connected with creating results. By having more time as a result, you can devote your precious time to activities that create results, e.g. coming up with new ideas for products, creating more products, talking to potential customers, promoting your products, etc.
- Focus your time on a single activity; do not multitask. Sure multitasking comes in handy when we are doing something not that important, like cooking lunch, washing the dishes, talking on the phone, but when you want to do something to the best of your abilities, especially at work, DO NOT multitask. When you multitask, your focus, energy, and brain power are spread, and when that happens is that you cannot come up with some creative ideas because your mind is too busy multitasking to be creative. When you are able to focus completely on one thing, on one single activity, you will get the results you need. What you can do is set working blocks of focused time – 60 minute, or 90, or 120 minute blocks of time – and focus completely on ONE activity. Make sure that there are no distractions and no interruptions.
- Take breaks of 10-15 minutes – you need a fresh mind to get the creative juices going. Sometimes the best ideas come to us when we are not actually thinking about the task or the problem.
- Focus on what will work in the future, not what worked in the past. The world is changing as you are reading these lines, and we need to adapt to it. Something that worked 50, 30, 10, or even 2 years ago might no longer be the optimal solution.
- Ask for help when you get stuck. Brainstorm with your co-workers. This saves you time, energy, and worry. By including your co-workers in your ideas, you show them that they are important to you and that their opinion also counts. If you are the owner of a business, make sure you show appreciation for their help by thanking your employees (either by saying ‘Thank you!’, giving them a bonus, taking them out for a celebrational meal, etc.).
Don’t forget to treat people with respect and dignity that you would want from them.