Every day there is a new call, text, task, meeting, play date, family emergency or event to add to the chaos of modern living. We schedule, plan and make long ‘todo’ lists – but we can only fit so much into 24 hours.
Here are 15 ways to calm the chaos and claim your success!
- Access Your Responsibilities. Make 3 separate columns on a sheet of paper (family, work, community) and be honest with where you are spending your time. Look at what you can start saying no to, delegate or eliminate completely from this list.
- Schedule Private Time. If you want to claim your success, you need quiet time to rest your mind and reflect on what you have, need to and hope to accomplish. Treat this alone time with as much respect as you give a client meeting.
- List Your Goals. Write your top 5 immediate goals on a piece of paper and keep it with you. Goals are beacons in the chaos. Personal Goal Setting serves to remind us of what is truly important and helps guide our decisions in our day to day life. At lunch, in between meetings, while waiting in line at the grocery store – as often as you can – LOOK AT THIS LIST. When you complete a goal, replace it with another one from your master goal list.
- Chuck Your Stuff. Schedule time each month to get rid of clutter. . . at your office, home and your car. Have 4 boxes handy (donate, give, put away, throw away) to make this process more organized. A favorite book is Lose 200 Lbs This Weekend: It’s Time to Declutter Your Life by Don Aslett and Carol Cartaino.
- Learn to Say NO. For many of us – saying no is difficult. This article by Zen Habits is a great place to start learning how. 7 Simple Ways to Say “NO”
- Create a Board of Advisers. Whether you are a seasoned professional or a young adult, having a trusted and varied group of people who you can turn to for advice and guidance is priceless. This post from Inc. Magazine is perfect to get you started : How to Assemble a Board of Advisers
- Study the Masters. Regardless of your profession or trade there is, inevitably, someone (or many) whom you admire. Learning from Leaders by reading their blogs, following them on twitter, reading their books and when the opportunity arises – engage with them. Focus on a more respectful studying of what has made this person a success . . . that includes their failures.
- Create a Vision Board. What The Heck’s A Vision Board—and How Can It Change Your Life? Cut out images from magazines or use your own images, sketches and pictures to create a living life plan of what you want. You can easily create or purchase a cork board to hang in a private room to create your masterpiece. When you achieve a goal on your board – take a photo, then replace that accomplishment with the next goal.
- Read More. There is a wealth on knowledge on the internet that comes at you at break neck speed. Taking time to read and learn things that will help you reach your goals will give you much needed rest while you still fill your head with valuable knowledge. Success Books is a great blog that has reviews of Success Books, Blogs, Podcasts, Websites and other tools that will help you claim your success.
- Sleep. All too often we make poor judgement calls when we have not had enough rest. From bad driving, short temper, dozing off in a meeting – none of these will help you reach your goals. Learn more about how much sleep you need from the National Sleep Foundation.
- Learn How to Manage Your Time. At the end of your day write the top 6 priorities for the next day. Number them from 1 to 6 in order of importance – tackle each task until close of business. What ever you did not finish gets bumped to the top of your list for the next day. This advice comes from Ivy Lee, known as the “founder of public relations” and the man who gave this same advice to Charles Schwab back in the 1920’s.
- Turn Your Phone Off. When you are faced with a task or meeting that needs your undivided attention – turn your phone off. . . or for those of you who are parents – at least put it on vibrate. Giving the task and the people in front of you your undivided attention will go a long way in helping you reach your goals. Remember to Turn Off That Cell Phone! Business Etiquette Still Counts.
- Follow Up. Whether by phone, email or handwritten note – make time each week to touch those that have made your week great. Keep a list of those that you want to stay in contact with and schedule alerts that remind you to reach out. Here is an oldie but goodie post on The 10 Best Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Tools.
- Organize. When you are organized both in the physical and virtual worlds your everyday tasks take less time. Think of how much time you waste searching for files, tools, clothes or that thingy that you need to finish that home project. Woman’s Day has a fantastic list of 100 Ways to Get Organized.
- Ask for Feedback. It’s a good rule of thumb to always ask for feed back. Whether it’s for your new recipe, your recent blog post or that project you just completed. Not everyone will respond and you may not always like what you hear – but those willing to offer constructive ways that you can improve what you are doing . . . they will be the hands that guide you and helps you climb out of chaos. Learn How to Offer Constructive Feedback.
What tips would you offer to conquer the chaos and claim success?
[This post originally written for Linking Triad]