Friday, August 22, 2014

7 Productivity Pitfalls You Need to Avoid



As we are all crafting and in business, our time is valuable—we build our careers with our own two hands. You’re probably starting the year off with new goals and resolutions, so it’s a great time to review these 7 productivity pitfalls to avoid:

1. Clicking. You might remember me from an online meeting. My name is Lisa, and I’m a Clickaholic. How many times per day do you spend 15 minutes clicking through Facebook, email, your handmade site, Paypal, one more quick stop by Facebook … and oh goodness, add Pinterest to the list because those boards have become my latest fix. To avoid this pitfall, schedule email time (for example, write and return emails every day from 8-9 AM) and turn off the computer during business hours, or work in a room where it’s not.

2. Unfinished Business. Unfinished business means that you’re not getting tasks done, or you’re putting off necessary actions that you must take. These little buggers manifest as energy drains that suck the productivity out of you every. single. day. To resolve unfinished business, create a to-do list of all of those nagging issues in your life and ask yourself, “What’s the next step I need to take in getting this finished?” For example, if you need to make an appointment for your car, the next step might be to get the number for the garage. Start taking next steps for each item on the list, and before you know it you’ll have them all crossed off.

When unfinished business gets out of hand, it turns into number 3 ….

3. Clutter. The state of your physical space is a direct reflection of the state of your mind. If there’s garbage in the car, or mold in the shower, or a stack of loose papers on the desk, you might also notice that your mind is racing, ruminating, or otherwise engaged in useless chatter. Clutter represents speed bumps and stop signs on your road to productivity. Where there’s clutter, there’s a mind that needs rest, organization, and direction. Start tackling one little pile at a time. You’ll also want to bring awareness to where your thought goes during the day. Are you following an unconscious, rambling train of thought? Or, are you training your thoughts and putting your mind to good use?

4. Procrastination. You know that feeling … it happens when you really should be doing something productive, but you’re watching reruns of Jersey Shore instead. Procrastination builds gradually, like noise. I recently wrote about my own personal account with procrastination in a post titled, Reduce Your Influence, Increase Your Inspiration. Procrastination feels lazy and chaotic; it’s an uncomfortable, restless state. I invite you to read my story, and ask yourself, “What’s the volume of my life?”

5. Troublesome Relationships. When you do some digging into productivity pitfalls, sometimes you’ll find the real reasons behind them. Difficult relationships are one of the many things that might really be bothering you. If you’re struggling with someone in your life, or your feelings are going unheard or unsaid, you might want to ask yourself what you really need. For example, your life could be noisy because you’ve just gone through an unhappy period, and you’re not quite back on top of your game yet. Are you seeking a sense of security? Control? Maybe recognition or approval? Figure out how you can give that to yourself. What action or change can you make to feel better? Filling the emotional voids for yourself, by yourself, will put you back on the road to productivity.

6. Debt. I believe that where there is fear, there cannot be love; where there is love, there cannot be fear. In that same sense, I believe that where there is debt, there cannot be abundance; and where there is abundance, there cannot be debt. Debt is a result of fear, lack, and want. It is the exact opposite of prosperity, wealth, and abundance. Make a conscious choice to reduce debt and move toward abundance, it will increase your productivity and enhance the overall quality of your life.

7. Neglected Priorities. Our productivity suffers when our priorities are out of whack. I’m talking more specifically than listing family, God, me-time, career–although, that is all very important to consider. For the purpose of this article, I ask you to question the priorities within your creations. Are you offering impeccable service? Is there integrity, passion, and honesty in everything that you do? Build your business to serve others, and before you know it, it will begin to serve you.

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