The Real Reason You’re Distracted
The average entrepreneur spends 9 hours working each day, but did you know that 3.4 hours of which is wasted on distractions? Managing time is a struggle for most estheticians and spa owners. We all have the same hours in a day, yet it seems harder and harder to get it all done. The task list grows and somehow we become paralyzed. What’s the real time management problem. The hyper-connected world we live in could have something to do with the distractions in our life. We’re almost always connected to our cell phones, social media, and email. Did someone say “Squirrel?” One research found that people in the United States across all age groups check their phones 46 times per day!
There’s endless content we can consume from this digital world, while everyone seems to want our likes and hearts and attention every minute. It is also extremely addicting.
How often do you become distracted, get sucked into a rabbit hole, dig yourself out after a few hours only to realize that you haven’t done anything meaningful that you planned on doing that day?
In this day and age of information overload, everything seems urgent but are we focusing on the few things that will make a difference in our business?
We scramble to see who wants us every time our phones ping. We may look busy but are we really doing what’s important?
The important tasks, unfortunately, may not be “urgent” enough to break through the noise.
No wonder it’s so challenging for entrepreneurs to stay focused on important projects that are going to move the needle for our business.
Many of us are aware enough that we’re getting distracted when we got sucked into text and emails and Facebook and Netflix… but why can’t we just stop?
Putting out fires and checking stuff off the to-do list could make us feel productive. Yet this can also be the biggest distraction of all because we’re hiding behind busywork and blinding ourselves to what really needs to get done.
Getting lost in distraction is a kind of procrastination, or resistance, born out of fears. All the busy-ness we project to the outside world make us “look” productive so we can avoid what’s really important – tasks and activities that are going to bring us closer to our goals and visions.Getting lost in distraction is a kind of procrastination, or resistance, born out of fear. Click To Tweet
More often than not, these important tasks will require us to step out of our comfort zone and stretch our capabilities. They require us to grow and be a better version of ourselves. They require us to lead and to change – and change could be a very scary thing to our unconscious mind.
Time Management And Avoiding Important Tasks
Now don’t beat yourself up – it’s human nature to avoid things that we aren’t good at. We are not going to like all business related tasks to help us run a successful practice. As entrepreneurs, we are in a constant battle to step outside our comfort zone and face the things we resist most.
I hear this a lot from my clients, “Maxine, I need to be working on my business plan. I need to be working on my marketing calendar. I need to be blogging. I need to be…”
They’re saying that because they know that those tasks will move the needle on their businesses. They just couldn’t get themselves to do it no matter what. Instead, they distract themselves with busy work so they don’t have to deal with important things that take them out of their comfort zone.
Does that happen to you as well? Do you put the important tasks you don’t like or want to do on the backburner and distract yourself with “urgent but not important” tasks?
I catch myself getting sucked into digital distractions all the time too – the difference is that now I’m able to catch myself and apply discipline to reign in my behavior before I go down the rabbit hole. I found that setting a timer helps! Try it!
Time Management – The “P” In Perfection Means “Prison”
A huge time management problem is “perfectionism.” This trap can keep us from launching a new product, service, or project. We are held behind bars until we feel it’s perfect for public eyes to see. Only, is it? Will it ever be perfect? I hear people say this all the time, “I’m such a perfectionist. I need to take my time.” As if perfectionism is a badge of honor. Nope. It’s prison. If you’ve been working on your website for two years but still haven’t launched it because of a “perfectionism” thing – I’m calling you out.
Perfectionism will hang us up every time. It holds us back from pulling the trigger on so many things that could move our business and our life forward.
The best entrepreneurs prototype and then iterate whatever that they’re creating. And they do it quickly to get feedback from real customers from the real world.
You can only “theorize” so much in your head. Get a blueprint up, make something work, and then tweak and improve base on how it performs in the market.
Perfectionism often stems from our fears of putting our product, service, or project out into the world so we don’t have to face failure or criticism. Forget the naysayers. Critics only come out to play when you’re on the right track. Launch your project and then tweak it. You can always make improvements. Just get it up and running!Perfectionism often stems from the fear of putting ourselves out there. Click To Tweet
Now you have the awareness of what’s causing your distraction and procrastination, we have to put a layer of discipline in place to help you get the work done.
And this brings us to time management and scheduling…
Schedule More Than Just Your Client Appointments
What gets scheduled gets done. Scheduling holds you accountable. Your calendar is not only for client appointments. The tasks and projects you need to get done for your business and family life are just as important. I believe in the power of scheduling everything. Family time, social events, and of course, my business building days. You can improve your time management with the simple action of scheduling all that you do. It doesn’t mean you can’t be spontaneous. Scheduling more than your client appointments keeps you organized.Be sure to treat your business like a client. Be the CEO. Click To Tweet
This appointment with your business is non-negotiable. It’s not about short-term gain but long-term growth.
Work on your marketing plan, devise a schedule for content marketing, hone in on your promotion messaging, create content to showcase your expertise, build strategic alliances with other practitioners – these activities are going to generate awareness for your brand and create more followers and more prospects in the long run.
Here’s the tricky part – somehow things always creep in to take over the time we block out to work on these important tasks or projects.
But you know what, we all have “stuff” to deal with. We all have things going on. Because we all have a life to live!
It’s really about setting a healthy boundary so you don’t compromise the time that you set aside just because you’re not seeing clients.
Work In 90 Minute Cycles To Improve Focus
Here’s your 90 minute time management focus challenge:
Pull out your calendar right now and carve out a 90-minute block of time to work “on your business” – this could be things like organizing your marketing calendar, making sales calls, blog writing, or analyzing reports .
I encourage you to work 90 minutes straight with no distractions to help you stay focused. That means closing out all the tabs on your browser that you aren’t using for your project, and turning off your phone. Setting a timer is helpful so that you don’t keep watching the clock. Improving focus not only saves you time and money – it helps you complete those important projects.
No pings and no dings for 90 minutes – if you get distracted, it can take up to 15 minutes to get back into the groove.
Once you have completed your 90 minute work cycle, take a 15 minute break. Have a snack. Go for a walk. Grab a drink of water. Rinse and repeat with the next task and work for another 90 minute cycle.
To be the leader of our lives and our business, we have to be the ones to take control and say, “No, darn it. I care about my business too much. I want it to grow. I’m gonna stop the avoidance and I’m gonna stop it now. This is my life and I want to improve.”
I prefer this type of strategic time blocking to gain control of your schedule and have laser like focus for 90 minutes on important tasks. You will feel accomplished, have more confidence, and more than likely improve your profits!
Managing your time doesn’t have to be this painful process. By implementing the 90 minute work cycle, eliminating distractions, and not getting caught up in perfectionism – you will improve your time management skills.
In the Esthetician Inner Circle, you’ll build your solid business foundation, then layer on the latest marketing strategies to get more clients and grow your business. I’ll show you how to integrate online and offline marketing to create a seamless client experience that stands out from your competition. Let’s do this!
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