Are you growing as a leader? Does each success leave you feeling more energised and ready to tackle your next challenge? Or, do you constantly feel stressed out, struggling to make it through each day?
Learning how to balance all the competing commitments in your life will lead to greater success because in many cases, the number one obstacle that we need to overcome to achieve our goals is ourselves. We sabotage ourselves by overcommitting, and adding distractions that increase our stress levels and prevent us from being able to focus.
The following five strategies can help you cut through all the interference generated by these distractions and help you create greater balance and harmony in your life. Simplifying and organising your life paves the way for greater strength and resilience and increases your level of success as a professional and leader.
Schedule What’s Important and Close the Door on Distractions
Often, we fail to create space in our day for doing what is important, and, even when we do manage to create a to-do list of important tasks, we leave the door open to distractions.
One way you can defeat these obstacles is to create a schedule of the most important tasks you want to accomplish each day, whether it’s a personal priority or a professional one, and schedule time for each task.
Once you’ve scheduled time for a specific task, try to literally close the door on distractions. Completely focus on the task at hand, and turn off your phone and avoid obsessively checking your email.
Be Realistic With Your To-Do Lists and Schedules
Another way we sabotage ourselves during our work day is that we aren’t realistic with our to-do lists and schedules.
Be realistic about the amount of time that it will take to complete each task, and only place tasks and goals on your list that you want to accomplish. Stop overcommitting and understand that it really is okay to say “no,” to others when you don’t have the time and energy to take on another objective.
Focus on the Task at Hand
Every day we are bombarded with overt and covert messages that push us to “do more with less,” as tech gadgets, software and efficiency experts all extol the virtues of multi-tasking to get more done in less time. Unfortunately, these messages are false. Simply being “busy” does not equal getting more work accomplished. When we multitask, we may feel as though we are doing more, but in reality we accomplish less. Multi-tasking divides our attention and energy and increases our rate of mistakes and other errors.
Focus on each task so that you can give it your full attention before moving on to your next challenge.
Another strategy to help you accomplish more of your goals is to build accountability into each task and goal. Set reasonable deadlines for your tasks. Tell your team, and peers about your goals, and deadlines. Keep them updated about your progress. Bring a friend or loved one with you when you work-out to help you keep pushing towards your fitness goals. Consult a mentor to help you identify leadership areas that you can improve and ask them to offer constructive advice as well as hold you accountable for your goals.
Be Present in This Moment
Finally, most of us waste an incredible amount of time obsessing over past failures, or fantasising about how great that a point in the distant future will be that we forget to focus on the here and now. If you’ve made mistakes in the past, learn what lessons that you can from them, and move on. Don’t be so focused on how great the future will be that you forget to take concrete action today to make that future a reality.
Be present in each moment and be fully present so that you can contribute as well as completely enjoy each second of your life!