How can you get twice as much work done in a day—without working any longer or harder?
1. Get organized.
Start preparing for your day the night before. Write down the things you have to get done tomorrow. There is a very clever name for this: goal-setting. So you set your goals, then you get them organized in the order of their importance. Get the difficult and disagreeable things out of the way first. Free your mind so you can concentrate on the rest of the list. Now you’re organized. You’re accepting responsibility. You’re making commitments.
2. Show commitment.
Commitment is important. Because when you hit the wall—not if… when you hit the wall—if you’ve made the commitment, your first thought is, How do I solve the problem? If you haven’t made the commitment, your first thought is, How do I get out of this deal? When you make a commitment, things happen. It shows that you really care about the other people there. It shows that you are dependable. Your integrity comes through.
3. Build integrity.
When integrity is part of you as a person and part of your life, you do the right thing. When you do the right thing, you have nothing to feel guilty about. With integrity, you have nothing to fear because you have nothing to hide. With guilt and fear both removed from your back, doesn’t it just make sense that you can function more efficiently? You will be freer to do the right thing, always. Emerson said, “If you would lift me up, you’ve got to be on higher ground.” Truer words were never spoken.
4. Stay positive.
Some of us are born optimistic and some are not. The 1828 Webster’s Dictionary does not have the word pessimist in it. It only has the word optimist. The good news is if you are a natural-born pessimist, you definitely, emphatically, positively can change. You are a pessimist by choice because you are what you are and where you are because of what’s gone into your mind. You can change by changing what goes into your mind.
So, armed with a plan, you not only get to work on time, you’re a little early and you immediately get started. You don’t stand around and say, “Well, I wonder what I should do now.” You can’t wait to get after it. You want to do the right thing, so you get started in a hurry. You’re enthusiastic and highly motivated. You decisively move from one task to another.
5. Cut the chitchat.
Have you noticed that people who have nothing to do want to do it with you? But, on this day, when you finish one task, move with purpose to another one. And people will not block you for that five-minute gossip session. I am absolutely convinced that the listener has more to do with the gossiping than the speaker, because if you don’t listen, they’re not going to talk to you. When you move with purpose, people will step aside and let you go.
I will absolutely guarantee that you will save a minimum of an hour a day in two-, three- and five-minute increments. An hour a day is five hours per week, which is 250 hours per year. That is six weeks of your life—will you use it or waste it?
What could you do with six extra weeks every year?