Being an entrepreneur means along with the important things on a to-do list come the 895 distractions. Learning how to prioritize and say no to certain tasks can actually be the ticket to success. There are only 24 hours in a day and spending 16 of them on insignificant assignments ruins the chances of actually achieving the dreams and goals you set out to achieve in the first place.
The entrepreneur lifestyle does not often give adequate time to relax, recuperate, and reorganize, which means that coming up with a system to avoid saying yes to the wrong things can help you organize and prioritize from the beginning.
How Prioritization Can Set You Up for Success
In this article, I will be giving a few tips on how to prioritize, stay on your path, and boost your confidence along the way. These three things can help make the entrepreneur life even more manageable – keeping you from getting completely burnt out. *whew!*
1. Keep Your Promises to Yourself.
As an entrepreneur, as soon as something goes wrong, our confidence is the first thing to be in question. We put ourselves down and think, “Is this even worth all the stress and complications?”. You know for damn sure it’s worth it, but since you are in a pickle, you are likely to second-guess yourself. This is your dream! Don’t let it go just because you are in a valley – wait until you get to the next mountain peak and you will be glad you kept going.
In scenarios like this, keeping your promises to yourself can be a great way to prove to yourself that you are reliable. Once you start to prove to yourself that you are trustworthy and great to work with, networking with others and making business deals will go over more smoothly. Hold yourself to high standards, don’t sell yourself short. Be very strict with deadlines, and don’t let little things get in your own way.
The more you prioritize the more your mind and body will think highly of you and your worth. Once you realize you are credible, you will be more open to working with others and pushing for your goals.
2. Learn to Say “No”
This is quite possibly the hardest thing to learn, especially when you are new to the world of entrepreneurship. You will get offers from people to do small pieces here and there, be asked to just give a few hours of your time, or get offered to complete a task for a decent amount of money. Now, doing things like this every once in awhile can enable you to grow your network, build your audience and make some side cash, however, doing it often can sidetrack you from your actual goals.
Write down a list of things that you have to get done either daily or weekly. Figure out what tasks can be done less frequently or completely avoidable. We often think that certain tasks are important to finish but later realize they are not as important as originally thought.
Make a list of 5 critical tasks that you must finish daily. This means, no matter what else happens in the day you have to finish these 5 tasks otherwise the day is wasted. After you have written these 5 tasks down, go back and figure out if those other side gigs are important enough. If a side gig is important, decide if it can be done after finishing those critical tasks. If not, do not accept it.
Do not put your critical tasks on the back burner in order to make an extra couple hundred dollars. Saying no to certain things can set the standard you wish to hold yourself at. When you only complete assignments at a certain caliber you train your mind to determine your self worth and that in return can boost your confidence.
3. Schedule in Time for Yourself
As an entrepreneur, you are constantly thinking of the next thing to do, the next place to be, and the next person to talk to. That is all well and good, however, scheduling time for yourself to relax is absolutely necessary. Lack of sleep over long periods of time combined with the stress and uncertainty of starting a business can lead to spikes in anxiety. When you are sleep deprived and anxious, the only thing your body wants to do is find a way back into your comfort zone.
Your body is trained to try and stay in the comfort zone so that it does not have to exude energy on unnecessary things. The more your mind becomes tired and disoriented, the more it will convince you to stay in your comfort zone and not push yourself. This can lead to a downward spiral of second guessing, doubting and lack of confidence in your abilities. The reason I say this all? I was there, multiple times. Schedule in time for yourself to completely relax and recuperate. Even though it may be tough sometimes it can be the key to being more productive when you actually work.
Prioritize Yourself: Focus on What Matters
Entrepreneurship can be difficult at any stage, whether you are just starting out, trying to grow, or getting into different markets. Learning how to prioritize, say no, and take time for yourself can be the difference between success and just plain stress.
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