This is a precious story about how I realized that it’s way more important to actually DO instead of never-ending PLANNING. We tend to get sucked into a planning process – when and how we will make things happen. We like waiting for the perfect moment and being ready. So this is a simple reminder that things get done when you DO them. Here’s how to start doing instead of planning.
My thoughts on this subject started with reading articles directly related to the same topic.
It was my personal wake up call to review my working habits and start thinking that maybe, just maybe, I’m doing something terribly wrong. If you feel like you could get done more if you’d leave your fears and doubts behind, read on.
I’m a part of 21st-century youth. Although I know there is a life behind computer screens and information can be found in books, I still find myself stuck by the computer for most of my life.
Well, it’s also my source of income, my holy grail of creativity and much more.
It’s not all a waste of time. But the time spent by the computer screen has made me think –
- What are the actually useful things I do when I’m online?
- What are the daily routines that I’m just stuck with?
- How can I improve this time and make it count?!
When I started using RescueTime I saw the real statistic of what was going on. There was too much time spent on stuff.
On stuff that was somewhat useful but mostly – not as useful as I’d like it to be. Those were inspirational articles, time spent in Facebook groups networking, hours of e-mail answering.
I realized that a lot of my time is spent on managing, for planning, for preparing to make things work. But when it came to getting it done – so much of the time had already passed… it was no use!
And soon afterward I realized that I’m trying to catch up with way too much information and be too present.
If you feel anything like me, make sure to read some simple yet very effective tips on how to deal with this information and to-do overload you’re getting yourself into.
How to start doing instead of planning
STEP #1: Get more intentional about things you do
The very moment when I realized how much only kind of useful stuff I do, I started rethinking not only my business but my whole life.
Where else was I spending my time with no real outcome? What are the things I do, think about and have that should not be a part of my life?
As soon as we start focusing on what really matters and throw out the rest, the value of our time increases and things get done.
Ask yourself: what of your to-do list will serve you in the long run?
STEP #2: Stop consuming useless information and stop doing useless musts
Unless you don’t know that you’re screwed, no one will be able to realize this for you. It’s like an addiction!
As long as you see the problem, there is a solution. And here are some things to consider.
Decide what’s really important
Remember: it’s not about doing either boring or fun stuff. It’s about doing what matters. There’s always an additional time in your life for fun and having time off is crucial. But it’s also important to have a quality time off, not just sitting by the TV.
- Will it be reading a marketing strategy book or watching News?
- Will making your to-do list prettier or checking something off that list make you more productive?
- Which apps are just for numb fun and which – for educational or useful purposes?
- What TV Shows can you find inspiration from and what eat more of your time than anything else?
- What activities you do just to escape what you really need to get done?!
Eliminate the rest
And I mean it. ELIMINATE is the answer. Delete apps that are consuming way too much of your time. Delete e-books that are waiting for your attention more than a half year or so. Get out of useless Facebook groups. Unfollow people. Eliminate the clutter from your life and business.
When you have all of this stuff around, it’s easy to give up. Besides that, your mind is cluttered with this information waiting for your attention. Let it go!
Manage your time
This is the hardest part of this. Manage your time and see where it goes.
Dedicate time to rest and recreational activities – as much as possible. But do the work when you need to get it done. And make sure to manage all of that.
I currently use Google Calendar to deal with overwhelm – that’s where I’m adding EVERYTHING I both need to do and afterward – what I actually did in that time.
So at the end of the day I know:
- How much time I’ve actually invested in better me and better future?
- Where have I left is slip, more than it was necessary?
- How can I improve the next day or the next week? How can I plan better?
Learn to ditch projects
Whatever we’re talking about here: articles, books, movies, projects, new hobbies. People have a tendency to finish things no matter what because they’ve wasted so much time on that already, how can they not to finish what’s started! But it’s a false argument.
If you’ve started something that doesn’t feel quite right, WHY you should waste even more time on that and then be unsatisfied after all? Just quit! There’s nothing bad about it.
TIP #3: Learn by doing – practice makes perfect!
Most of the people tend to think they don’t know enough to get them going. They always feel like learning more is the answer. When, in reality, you just have to get started!
Whether it’s your business, e-mail newsletter, photographing, fitness or cooking. Just go for it! You can still learn and don’t get me wrong – it’s always a good idea to learn something new. But don’t limit yourself by the things you don’t know. Yet.
Getting things done will make you feel more inspired and you’ll be able to learn from your own mistakes.
Don’t bury yourself under the pile of must-do articles, books, how-tos.
Instead, do the activities that motivate you to get better, that improve your abilities. Be ACTIVE and meaningful in your life.
Other useful resources:
- Mind Your Own Business: Bring mindfulness & simplicity into your business
- Your online business. Is this really YOUR passion?
- How to deal with overwhelm in business: 5 tips to get out of the rut
- Mentioned articles: “Quit reading and writing, and start doing” and another one – “Stop learning. Start applying.”
- Another amazing read that might change your perspective: “Essentialism. The Disciplined Pursuit of Less.”