To make sure I have the right person reading this blog, I want to ask you these questions. Are you a woman with children or not, but working a full-time Job? Are you a woman entrepreneur with an immediate family of your own who and running a business by the side. Are you a full-time mum running a business by the side. Or maybe you just a young woman on a cross road in your life not sure how your life is going but want to be more productive. Does your hat as a woman includes that you are a wife and possibly a breadwinner of your family. If by chance you fit into any of the hats, then you are in the right place. Please do read on.
There is no better time than now for me to write on this topic I fully wear a lot of hats and I must say it can be challenging.
Being a female entrepreneur alone is a hard job on its own not to talk of adding all others hats on top of it and still expect to achieve ultimate satisfying productivity.
As a wife and a mother working full time and as well as working hard at setting up an online business working from home, I can tell you that achieving great productivity in my life and business is one thing I strive for. I know I need it if I must achieve my dreams and still be a happy business woman and mother at the end of the day.
There were many days when I felt really frustrated with things around me because I have not been able to attain certain level of productivity. I am somebody that likes to look back at the end of the day to recap on how the day went and what has been achieved. I noticed that a lot of valuable hours were being wasted both at work and at home including my personal life that could not be accounted for positively and I realised the cost to me. As they say “time is money” and if you are not using it well, I am afraid to say you are losing out on valuable assets.
I want you to take note that when I talk about increasing productivity, I don’t mean being a busy bee doing lots of things. We can become very busy especially with all those hats on that we do not make impacts in the life of those around us and in our business.
The business dictionary defined Productivity as: “A measure of the efficiency of a person, machine, factory, system etc in converting inputs into useful outputs”. It is a state of being productive.
Let me bring this home. I don’t know about you but when I get something done with minimum time and effort invested, I always feel very satisfied and fulfilled. I am sure I am not alone on this. Okay! Another way to look at this is this my old car used to consume fuel a lot. Whenever I filled the tank to last me for a week, I soon realised it was lasting 3-4 days. However, the case was different fueling a new car. I had more satisfaction and less trouble and less cost in a new car compared to an old car. Therefore, it makes sense that from productivity stand point of view, getting or having a new car is worth every of your investment even if it cost you more initial deposit. If you have driven a new and old car, I am sure you know what I mean. This means that an effective and strategic use of your inputs will determine the result of your output. So to achieve an increased productivity, you need to evaluate your daily inputs into your life, work and business. If you are not getting the results you want, then there’s the need to make changes.
I took an evaluation of my life recently and I decided to change and incorporate some habits around to help me achieve high productivity and I will be sharing this with you. Note! Being productive must be a deliberate action and commitment on your part. It does not just happen. It is something you must want to attain in your life and business so that you don’t end up frustrated and quit your call and purpose in life.
Paul J. Meyer puts it this way:
“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning and focused effort.”
As soon as the day starts, there are many things that scream for your attention. So let’s look at some habits that will help you increase productivity as a woman, mother and entrepreneur:
There is this quote I have come to really love. “He who fails to plan, plans to fail”. This is so true and I have learnt my lessons in a hard way. If you are a woman with multiple hats on and even if it’s just one hat on, there is no way you will attain high productivity and success in life or in your business if you do not plan ahead.
Planning in advance gives you the weapon to deal with eventuality when they arise. The act of advance planning helps you to engage in critical thinking of how you intend to achieve success in a chosen area or task. Advanced planning prepares you for success and gives you information on how you can handle eventualities.
One of the biggest cause of low productivity in our personal lives and business is the lack of keeping a daily list of all that you intend to achieve on daily basis. Without a to-do list, you are likely to be overwhelmed with all the tasks you have to do on a daily basis as a woman wearing different hats of responsibilities. You will find yourself missing out on tackling important task and meeting deadlines.
A to-do list of tasks helps you to save time and must be done in such a way that you have the most important tasks of the day on the top of the list and the not so important at the bottom of the list. A to-do list helps you to be focus and keeps you from being burned out.
In my experience, I have found out that it;s useless having your list in your head. Lists are more effective when they are written down and kept where you can easily go back to it and run through it during the course of the day. Finally on this I want to encourage you to write your list down the night before. Doing so, is a way to wind down and tell yourself that today is over and that you are ready to take on the world come the next day and you sleep peacefully knowing that you are ready for the next day and you know what you want to achieve for that day.
Ladies I want to say here that it’s of no use having a list full of tasks that you know you can not do. Don’t try to be a super hero woman who ends up at the end of the day not saving anyone because you gave all your time to things you did not have the skill for.
Learn to delegate and outsource responsibilities to others who can help you so that you can focus on tasks you have the skill for and that will bring you satisfaction and results. We have24 hours in a day and there so much that we can do and if you are that woman wearing lots of hats then you must learn the act of delegating or outsourcing responsibilities to others without feeling guilty. Know thy strength!
To attain high productivity, I encourage you to practice the habit of scheduling time to every task on your list. This will help you to track and limit how much time you spend on tasks.
You might be thinking that you are great at the time you take on various tasks, but research indicate that about 17% of people can only make correct estimates of time passage.Therefore, tools like rescue time can help in time management.
There is a huge benefit in starting your day early. I have not been an early riser for many years. I would wake up late in the mornings and almost time I found out that a lot of my important task for the day are unaccomplished. This often lead to frustration at then of the day when I start to take stock of how my day has gone.
Research has shown some correlation with waking up early and success. Almost all the books I have read talks about the benefit of waking up early and that successful people have this habit of waking up early and they gey more done.
Recently I had to make a list of success habits that I need to live daily and waking up early is one of them. I have started to put this into practice and I tell you it’s not easy but it’s well worth it.
Since I started to put this into practice to woke up early, I always noticed I had a productive day. Most important task around the home where completed before the boys woke up. My good morning routines were carried out without rush. I discovered that the early hours of the day were my most productive because it was free from distractions. I tend to get lots of inspiration for my blog and books I am working on. I hear clear instructions at this times and I am able to record on my vision book and diary.
Starting your day early helps you to get the most important things done first.
This can be called bonus time which you may find on your hands. Instead of facebooking and doing other things try maximize this available time by pounding out some emails brainstorm or even setting your daily to-do list.
I travel by train a lot and I found out how amazing my time in the train is. I now actually prefer to use the train because it allows me to write my blog post and books I am working on. I use my travel time to read. I hardly read at home. Majority of my readings are in the train. I found out it’s also my time to communicate with my source of life, the almighty creator of the universe. I get a lot of inspirations in the train. A lot of my blogs and book ideas have been given to me while in the train. So use this time wisely. If you can cut down your time of driving to use commercial means, please I will strongly advise you do. This will certainly increase your productivity.
I will like to hear from you on the comment session. Do feel free to add what you are doing to increase your productivity.