“It will take me five minutes.”
“I just need to find a half hour.”
“I’ll get to it as soon as I get some bandwidth.”
“It’s on my list. Really.”
We’ve all said these things.
Many of us have people on our team who repeat this mantra as a defense, an excuse or a legitimate reality.
It’s not very productive.
There is an enormous difference between how long it will take to do “it” and how long to get “it” done. It’s critical to understand the subtle nuance here because it’s the key to efficiency.
First, It doesn’t mean that you throw up your hands and put it off for yet another day. We all know that doesn’t work.
You do need to pick a specific time to get it done. Because you have to consider WHEN you can get to something, when you will be able to devote the appropriate attention to it and when you will find that “flow state” that enables you to get through tasks with ease.
We all have different peak times during the day.
Many of us try to plow through the procrastinated pile of stuff during a time when we should be focusing on low focus activities. And it doesn’t work. Your frustration may be the key to understanding that the “when” just might not be “now.”
I developed the Less Doing Peak Time App which will track and trend peak performance times throughout the day. It gives a detailed assessment of the right times for the right tasks. Once we know our rhythms better, we can batch our day accordingly.
Next, is the delegation part.
Remember outsourcing without first optimizing is the definition of putting the cart before the horse. You’ll just be stepping in a lot of manure.
Sure, you could do it, but if you can’t get to it for a week, then there’s value in having someone else do it right now. Once you’ve internalized a sense of your natural abilities during any given day, letting shit go is more comfortable.
If you haven’t gotten to it, ruminated on your failure to finish it and spent way too much time in your head wondering why, it’s time to let someone else help.
For example, I haven’t physically written an article in five months, there are other things I have to do. But the writing gets done.
Not writing for me is putting a two-line idea in my editor’s Airtable, then we pick a time to hash out the idea face-to-face. Then she writes it. I read it. And she posts it.
We can go through ten different topics in an hour, and I’m confident she will not only get my gist but can add weight and clarity to my thought processes.
The alternative, where I do all the writing, is unworkable for me because it means the content will never get out there and no one will find validation, inspiration, and assistance.
So my content creation system is outsourcing at its best, and if you put it into practice, it can be the beginning of the end of your overwhelm.