Have you ever experienced not getting things done? Days or even weeks may have passed, but you accomplish just a little.
This is especially true when there is no deadline. For instance, let’s say you want to write a novel as your personal project. Since there is no pressure from the outside, you might make very little progress over time.
I experienced this myself. In writing for Life Optimizer, I don’t have a deadline from someone else. It’s up to me when to write. Because of that, I found that my productivity suffered. There were times when I finished just one post a month.
What is the solution then?
I eventually found a method that works for me. The method is this:
Allocate time daily and stick to it.
It’s simple, isn’t it? But this method can make a big difference in your productivity.
Here is another way to put it:
If you’re a writer, or an artist, or a musician, etc and are having trouble getting things done, the solution is as simple as this: Set a time slot every day where you will sit down and do nothing but work on creating your art. Doesn’t matter if it’s good or bad, your only job is to sit there and create for the whole time period. That’s the key, is consistently trying to do it.
Well said! In my case, I apply it by allocating time daily to write blog posts. Now I can finish a post a week and sometimes more.
I suggest you try this method as well. Here are the steps.
1. Choose the task.
Your time is limited, so you need to choose just one (or at most a few) task to allocate time for. If you try to do too much, you will get overwhelmed.
2. Identify your best time.
Everyone has a different time of day where they do their best work. Find yours. Are you a morning person or a night owl? In my case, I find that morning is the best time for me to write.
3. Decide on the amount of time.
The next step is deciding how much time you will allocate to the task. This is the minimum amount; you can spend more time but not less.
The key here is not to be ambitious. Make it something that you can handle, something you can do in the long term. In my case, I find that just half an hour works well for me. It’s short enough that it doesn’t intimidate me, but it’s also long enough that I can get something done. Remember, it’s just the minimum; I often go beyond it.
4. Use a timer.
What’s the use of allocating time if you don’t use it for real work? Say you allocate an hour to write but you use half of it to check the news. Obviously, that’s not a good use of the time.
So how can we make sure that we do real work during the time?
My solution is to use a timer. I commit that whenever the timer runs, I must do only the task and nothing else. If I want to check my emails, for instance, then I must stop the timer first. This way I can be sure that I use the time for real work.
5. Be consistent.
For this method to work, consistency is important. If you decide to do your task daily, then do it daily. Of course, you can take a break on the weekends, but you should plan that beforehand.
Being consistent can do wonders. If you do something for just half an hour a day, 20 days a month, that’s already ten hours of focused work! You can make a lot of progress with that.
For your important task, allocate time daily and stick to it. That’s how you can get things done.
Any thoughts? Feel free to share them in the comments.