Want to be more successful? You have the power to make this happen. When you start to manage the small things in your life, they add up to bigger things and soon you’ve built a reputation and a strategy for success. See what you can change to incorporate more successful strategies into your daily routine:
Use bonus minutes smartly. Think about all of the wasted time in your day and start to get rid of it step-by-step.
- While waiting for the microwave to finish, I load the dishwasher.
- While waiting for my computer to warm up in the morning, I put my lunch in the break room fridge and fill my water.
- While waiting in line, I update my task list.
- While waiting for meetings to start, I sign invoices or approve employee work.
- While waiting for my computer to power down, I pack my take-home bag and straighten my desk
- While waiting for my exercise class to begin, I do 10 rock-and-roll to stand exercises (this one is tough stuff) or use the spin bikes.
Every wasted minute you have could be an opportunity for you to get just a few more things done – you’ll have to think about what to do, remember, these are bonus minutes. You can smartly multi-task with items like these, so when you’re ready, you can devote your full attention to what really matters.
Prioritize ruthlessly. A few years ago, my boss had a serious conversation with me. I was taking work home and felt overwhelmed with the amount of work on my plate. She reminded me,
“There are always 100 things to do, pick the most important – you have to be ruthless with your time so you can prioritize more effectively. And don’t take work home with you, focus on work at work so you can focus on home at home.”
This was one of those life-changing conversations for me and has ultimately led to much of my professional success. When I’m at work, I’m completely focused on the task at hand and I power through my day like a champion. But as I’m powering my computer down each day, I take time to leave work at work. I write reminders and task for the next day; I mentally prepare to leave; and I remind myself that there will always be more work tomorrow.
Don’t settle. I was speaking with my husband recently about some future changes I’d like to make and in that conversation I said, “I don’t want to trade a bad situation for a different situation; I want something better.” You deserve to move forward; to be happy; to be in the right place at the right time doing the right thing. Don’t settle for less; realize what you should have and work toward that goal. It may not happen overnight, but make purposeful steps to make it happen and you shouldn’t be disappointed.
Do your research in advance. Before any important meeting, I always do my research. I read through related material, so I’m prepared to speak intelligently on the subject. I organize and print supporting materials, so I can provide examples, if needed. And I look at competitors and leaders in the field to see what other ideas are out there, so I know what I need to strive toward. Each of these key components make me feel more prepared in any situation and allow me to be more confident in my ideas and suggestions.
Be confident about your ideas, suggestions. I can’t overstate this: “You have good ideas, be confident in what you have to share!” I see students and colleagues that regularly talk me out of one of their ideas before we even get started.
“This is probably a bad idea, but . . . “
“I don’t know about you, but . . . “
“You might think this is stupid, but . . .”
Enough! If you want to share an idea; you should share your idea. You have good ideas, and when spoken confidently – they seem like great ideas. Be confident in yourself and your ideas in every situation.
Each of these changes takes a few minutes of your day, but can build a success strategy that will make a significant impact on your daily routine and your life. You can’t do a one and done, you’ll need to figure out how to make a purposeful change to incorporate these as habits, not as a test. You can do it starting today – build on your success.