Starting

It's best done by focusing on the smallest first step and practicing just launching into that.

Pick the tiniest first step, and launch into it.

Xander A. (@xan_a211) - Profile Photo

@xan_a211

Time Management

MORE IDEAS FROM THE ARTICLE

  • The habit of putting off starting, because it’s uncomfortable.
  • Maybe you get started, but then constantly switch to other tasks.
  • You put off starting (or finishing) because conditions aren’t perfect, or the work isn’t perfect.
  • Rely too much on other people and not taking responsibility.
  • You get pulled away by constant distractions and interruptions. 
  • Fear, uncertainty, feeling overwhelmed & self-doubt and tiredness.

If you focus on getting the small stuff done but not the big stuff, or switch between tasks all the time, you’ll be less effective.

Pick one important thing to focus on at a time and learn to evaluate what tasks and projects are of higher value to you.

Pick a short interval (10 minutes, 15, 20, or 25) and practice focusing on one task during that session, until the timer goes off. 

Then take a break, and try another focus session.

It's a great skill for keeping yourself focused and Getting Stuff Done. Choose a to-do program, put your tasks in the to-do list and every day just pick a few to focus on.

And at the beginning and the end of each day step back and taking a look at the overall picture, to adjust your plan and refocus.

Don't worry about perfectionism, just get the task done. Then go back and revise. 

But don’t overthink it, just focus on doing.

It means not blaming others for your difficulties in getting things done. 

Recognizing the obstacles but taking responsibility for finding a way, or accepting what needs to be accepted, or recognizing your part in the dynamic you’ve created.

Communicate clearly and honestly, so that everyone is clear on responsibilities and boundaries and consequences of not honoring those responsibilities and boundaries.

Having a minimal structure is good. You can adjust over time:

How will you start your day so that you’ll work on the important stuff? How will you do your focus sessions so you won’t be too distracted? How will you review your day so that you’ll learn from what happened? How will you create accountability?

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RELATED IDEAS

True productivity is putting the right things on your to-do list, exclusively answering emails that matter, and only taking meetings that will propel you forwards. 

It’s less about “how” and more about “what”. When you’re focused on unimportant objectives, you feel painfully stuck. It’s like trudging along on a treadmill; sure, you’re running, but you’re not actually getting anywhere. On the contrary, when you’ve had a deeply productive day, you’ll know it.

6

IDEAS

Moving Away From Pseudo-Work

Pseudo-work is when one works just for the sake of work, and is productive on paper but hasn’t really achieved anything substantial, or contributed to one’s core objective.

We all have a certain idea of what we want to attain for ourselves. In order to achieve it, we need to move towards essential, meaningful and productive work.

... is to maximize your productivity when you are working so that you can get more stuff done in shorter periods of time.

By working smarter, you'll find yourself with more time in the day to sleep, exercise, be creative, and recharge. And the key to getting through your to-do list faster is by working smarter -- without sacrificing the quality of your work.

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