In my last blog (How a little distraction can go a long way – Part 1), I mentioned on how a little distraction can come in the way of success. I would like to share with you how to prevent distractions from getting in the way of success.
1. Identify your goals and what you want in your business.
Tim Ferriss famously said, “Focus on being productive instead of busy.” Distractions, like fighting fires, keep us busy, and rarely productive. To be productive, we must identify and focus on our goals.
Every day, ask yourself, what do you want to accomplish in your business? How do you see your business in 6 months, a year, 10 years from now? Let the answers guide you each time you find yourself distracted by busy work and not getting any real work done. If you find that you are consistently ‘fighting fires’ in you business, then you will need to identify the cause of them and put that as one of your goals to work on the business.
2. Break down your goals into small achievable milestones.
When things get tough, remind yourself that success is a long game, rarely achieved overnight. It is comprised of goals built on top of another, each achieved over the course of time. Many of your ultimate goals may seem like ‘Mount Everest’ at times. No one climbs to Mount Everest’s summit in one go—the trek requires going through a route of several camps and takes up an average of more than a month to reach the summit from the base camp. So don’t be disheartened if your goals may seem to high to achieve. Break them down into achievable milestones (base camps). In this way, you won’t focus on how insurmountable the mountain is, but instead focus on achieving one milestone (base camp) at a time until you’ve reached the summit. When you reach each milestone, celebrate it, look back at what you have done (i.e rest at the base camp), then proceed to move to the next milestone that brings you closer to the summit.
3. Create actionable steps in order to achieve each milestone.
Once you’ve broken down your goal into milestones, identify the tasks required to achieve them. This is an important step, because this determines the work you do ON your business as opposed to IN your business. Listing down actionable steps helps you determine the kind of tasks that produce the most impact, which helps propel you towards your milestones, and ultimately, your goal. This is the stage where you can identify whether you need external assistance to get these tasks done. If so, you can plan to bring the external expertise in and work with you on them.
4. Create a ‘to-do’ list and incorporate those steps into it.
To-do lists provide a priority list of tasks that help guide me through the day, the week and the month. I keep the list pragmatic and achievable:
“What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.”
5. Focus on what you want and what that gives you.
We only have 24 hours in a day. Our days are too short to focus on being just busy, instead look for tasks that create a real and lasting impact in your business. More time focused on doing the things that matter will result towards building a successful business—and ultimately, a better life for yourself and your team.
In my book ‘From $20K to $2million in 2 years”, I go into more detail about the common traits of successful businesses that I’ve worked with over the years and the psychology of what makes them successful. You can get a free preview here (link). If you want to get a copy for yourself, you can purchase it here.