Of course, you could try to catch up once you feel a little more inspired. That’s exactly how I often feel after a holiday. You are so relaxed and chilled out and want the feeling to go on forever.
Even when you have an important deadline coming up and a high workload to go with it, you figure that your work will make you the opposite of relaxed and chilled out. And perhaps you don’t really want to go there.
That happened to me too once. And then, two days later, not only had I tackled a long to-do list, including a whole long list of emails and a great number of calls, I had caught up with my social networking sites and made some important decisions in between.
After resisting on day 1, I ended up at my desk for 12 hours (not non-stop I hasten to add), enjoying my work against all the odds! I was totally focused too, got so much done and each accomplished task felt really good.
Here are a few tips you may wish to try if you feel reluctant about starting your work.
- Make sure you write a task or to do list, and prioritise the items on it. It’s no good having jobs, projects or tasks in your head, where they can often cause more anxiety than necessary.
- Use the timer trick to get you started. Plan to do 5 or 10 minutes on a particular task and before long, you’ll notice you don’t mind carrying on.
- If you don’t want to use a timer, having a visible clock in your office may be OK. The best ones are the ones with an audible tick- they remind you that time doesn’t stand still.
- After working for a couple of hours, make sure you have a break. Have a hot drink, stretch your legs, open a window, read a paper. 10-15 minutes should be fine.
- Getting back into work mode after a break can be hard, so I do something that I enjoy – reading and updating one of my social media sites for 10-15 minutes (keeping an eye on the clock). This also makes me feel connected to the outside world. If you don’t do social networking, then why not make a call to a colleague instead? Always keep an eye on the clock though.
- Never ever be tempted to multitask thinking you’ll be quicker! Don’t have social media sites open in the background in order to go back to them from time to time. Single tasking is key to higher productivity – cutting out interruptions gives you higher levels of concentration. Task switching can not only be hard on the brain but will lose you time as your brain takes time to adapt to the different tasks.
- Getting a difficult job out of the way first, will feel liberating and your work will flow much easier afterwards. Again you can use the timer method to get into the task.
- At the end of the day, update your prioritised list for the following day, as it will help you to switch off!
What else has worked for you that you could share with our readers?
Ute Wieczorek-King is an experienced trainer, mentor and business & blogging coach. She helps busy passionate solopreneurs build a thriving small venture by being more visible and focused on what matters to them. Sign up for her free ‘Passion to Profit’ ebook at http://www.successnetwork.org.uk
(PS the above post was first published in 2010)