It’s hard when you are starting a business, or even growing an established one, not to check out what everyone else is doing. Read on if you’d like to know how to avoid making yourself crazy and ruining your self-esteem when you’re trying to grow your business online.
Looking at other people’s posts, content and offerings will make you feel worse, not better – run your own race!
We can’t help seeing it – the shiny new website promoted on Facebook, the newest optin looking spectacular in a post in our favourite group, the latest professional shots that are so on-trend.
It can really do your head in. You open instagram and scroll through the feed, you see amazing posts from some of your competitors and even business besties. Instead of feeling insta-inspired you feel a little bit (or a lot), insta-crap.
So how can we avoid this mistake? You can’t NOT be on social media if you are trying to grow your profile so people know how awesome you are. And seriously the more time you spend looking at other peoples’ stuff the less you are spending on your own business!
So here’s a few ideas to regain your focus and run your own race:
Go back to your WHY.
Remember why you are doing all this – was it to agonise over other people’s posts and videos? I think not. Refocus on your overall why. Why you went into business, you did it for a reason, for balance, for lifestyle, to work 80 hours a week! Lol.
Revisit your business plan
Remember that lovely new business you started? You know the one! That made you all tingly and excited like a new high school boyfriend? If you wrote out a business plan, what did you add as your mission? What was it you wanted to do in the world? Go back and read it, you may have done it ages ago but I bet it’s still says what will drive you forward and motivate you today!
Have a break
Do you need a self-imposed social media ban? Even for one day?
Try it – get outside, stand in the sand at the beach, go to the park, don’t check socials for the day.
Set a timer
Because we need to be on social media for our own businesses, it’s important you set boundaries. Set a timer for 30 minutes in the morning. Don’t scroll. Get in and post what you need to, engage in the groups you want to be part of including your own if you have one, and then get OUT!
Manage your notifications
Go through your notifications for each platform you are on and only check the ones that you have been tagged in, or that relate to a comment on something you have posted. It’s super important that you give yourself permission to do this, or you fall down a rabbit hole of other people’s posts that have really got nothing to do with what you’re trying to achieve.
Listen to your body
If something is making you feel anxious or causing some stress, turn it off. Turn off notifications, remove, pause, block or delete at will.
Run Your Own Race
If you want to grow that incredible business of yours, you really need to be using video to market it. In a way that achieves your business goals. Whether that’s in social media posts, blogs, emails, client messages or more.
Don’t stress if you’re not sure where to start. Go ahead and book in a 15 minute kick start call with me to give you some clarity about where to start with video. I’d love to help.
Don’t Spend Time Reviewing 2016
We’re always told to reflect on the year that was. The good, the bad, and the ugly. What worked and what didn’t. Connections we made. Money we spent. Emotions we experienced. Blocks we cleared…Reviewing the year is exhausting and I haven’t even started yet.
Before you delve into the year that was, and fall down the rabbit hole of introspective over-thinking, read on.
The Elusive Winning Mindset.
I don’t share personal struggle stories as a general rule. I think we should just all get on with it. Get to the point. Don’t faff around, just get stuff done. A true no-nonsense approach.
But a post last night by Brook McCarthy and then today by Kate Toon prompted me to think again.
Both said we should share the shadow, not just the highs but the woes too. Not just “look how well I do this thing cos I’m awesome, and so can you.” But the reality that a lot of the time I don’t ‘just get on with it’ and get stuff done.
I found a lot of the time I don’t have a winning mindset. That it’s fair to middling at best.
Want to Be More Productive?
1. Start with a clear desk
It’s thought that a messy desk is a sign of intelligence (Yay. And swearing and being a night owl amongst other things. Read about it here).
So why does a clear desk mean you can be more productive?
Research shows that the more mess there is, the more your eyes, and therefore brain, try to process. So you can’t focus on the task at hand.
You can read more about it here.
Out Of Site Out Of Mind
If you have a house full of messy kids like me, employ the ‘out of site out of mind’ technique. I simply make sure it’s not in eyeshot of my work space so I can’t see it (toys, washing, school stuff etc).
It’s important to remember you are working – this is your work space, not a kids toy dumping ground, drawing table or play centre.
It is your work space where you earn a living for your family. If you want a more productive day make sure you tidy it quickly every night, which leads to the next point…
2. A place for everything and everything in its place
Notebooks, reference materials, client details/files, stationery, printer, paperclips, printing paper, whiteboard pens, diary, phone charger…they all need to be in their place so you can start the day WITHOUT LOOKING FOR SHIT!
3. Use to do lists
Electronically or on paper, these are your must use tool every singe day – even several times per day – to make sure you are always working on the important stuff. You’ll feel super productive at the end of the day.
I am a bit of a serial planner and note book purchaser. Recently I have been trying to keep notes online so I don’t have to ferret through heaps of notebooks to find things
Here are my top three:
- Evernote. I keep notebooks in there for blog ideas. A daily journal. Reminders, and more. Easy to use and I can snip clips to it from research I do for blogs or work.
- Passion Planner. There are so many fantastic planners out there. This is one I have been using for a couple of years and recently tried the Daily Greatness Journal too.
- Simple bullet journal – I break my categories into Learn, Create, Do. So all my bases are covered. And I try to keep the list short so I don’t lose my tiny mind.
Over to You
What are your must-do tasks for staying productive? Feel free to share them here.
Follow These 3 Steps To Win Back Some Time
Tidy your workspace
Clean up your workspace the night before so you don’t start the day looking for shit like your keys, your wallet, important client’s details, the school notices, and your glasses!
Also, starting with a fresh tidy desk allows your brain to start focusing on the work at hand and not the pile of unpaid bills or kids’ artwork cluttering up your space. Doesn’t mean you are going to end the day with a tidy desk, but you can always start with one.
TIME SAVED: 15 minutes
Use To-Do Lists
Use to do lists all day every day so you don’t waste time on tasks that are not important to your business and family goals. If ever you find yourself faffing about not getting much achieved you know you need to revisit your list.
Keep it short so you’re not overwhelmed.
I have to try very hard to keep only 3-5 things on my list each day. Too much and I end the day in a pool of self loathing and guilt. Too little and I faff all day and don’t achieve anything.
TIME SAVED: 30 minutes
Ignore The To-Do List
Bear with me here. If you stop and check how productive you feel, and there’s something really distracting you that isn’t on your to-do list – set a timer for 15 minutes and get it done (or at least started).
You’ll be able to stop thinking about it and focus on the other things you were trying to achieve.
Our brains are simply not wired to multitask, even though we say we always do it.
In reality we are just being distracted and our concentration has to start from scratch each time…science backs me up on this I promise!
Here’s an article from the Huffington Post. Essentially every time you turn your attention to another task, ‘your brain is actually rapidly toggling between tasks, and because “each toggle depletes energy,” multitasking can actually drain you, leading to fewer accomplishments rather than more.’
TIME SAVED: 15 minutes
Over To You
That’s 60 minutes you can spend walking, playing with the kids, having a bath, talking on the phone, reading magazines, losing yourself on Facebook, Pinterest etc.
Truthfully we often waste more time that we think on social media too – so there’s another 30 at least!
How do make sure you get the most out of your day?
Three no nonsense tips for curing writer’s block when your brain is empty
So you can go from this:
You stare at the screen, it is blank like your brain…empty of ideas or a clue where to start. Write a blog they said, just write about yourself, or anything really, it will be easy they said. You even have the heading ready to go, it came to you in the middle of the night, inspiration strikes at weird times doesn’t it, I wonder what I should get for tea tonight, oh and don’t forget it’s Halloween this weekend and Ollie needs to dress as a zombie so I should ask someone if they have a mask I can borrow…oh hang on, I am supposed to be writing…yep okay, got it…writing something…anything
So we have all been there, you know you had something to say when you first came up with the idea for the blog. Now you have an hour dedicated to getting that ticked off your to-do list and you are in front of the blinking cursor…but what to do now?