As a twist of fate, after yesterday’s post I was on a course this morning called Personal Effectiveness: Working Smarter Not Harder. It was a bit of a surprise as I thought it was Pay Per Click today; but I found it really interesting.
At first they were concentrating more on how time can be wasted and the distractions we face on a daily basis, from phone, email and social media. I know I’m a real culprit for emails, I’ve turned my Outlook alert ping sound off; but it hasn’t really helped. I’m always keen to find something more interesting to distract me from my current work project. I tell myself there might be something urgent in an email I HAVE to reply to; but I realise I get less done by having such a scattered approach.
With Facebook and the internet in general there are now a million fun and “important” ways to procrastinate and it can be easy to waste my precious time and energy without trying too hard.
We did a short exercise making a list of all the things we needed to do and then divided up what percentage of time we used for them. Then we had to rank the jobs in order of importance and work out what percentage of time we needed to spend on them. I realised that I spend much too long on emails, about 70% of my time and that all my other duties for Holidays From Home get pushed to the back, things like doing actual writing of the virtual holidays and product development.
I also find it hard that I sit down each day hoping that I’ll suddenly have more energy than I know I have. I hope to be able to work for hours at a time, like a “healthy” person. This just isn’t possible so I need to accept that I only have about an hour or two on a good day to achieve all I need to and to work within this time frame. Instead of hoping for a miracle and being disappointed I can actually get more done with better focus and without making myself ill from pushing too hard.
I felt so much better having realised this and it’s even given me the boost I need to delegate some of the jobs to volunteers, who are eager to get involved. It’s a big step, letting go of control of my baby; but I know that I can achieve so much more with the help of others, so as the title of the blog and course says, I’m now going to be Working Smarter Not Harder.