Oh the irony! I’m writing a post after 10 p.m. that was supposed to be finished much earlier today… and the post is on nothing other than getting it done early. As you can see, this is one of those areas of discipline I sorely need to work on.
So what’s the key to success? Simply put: Get it done early.
This principle applies to your home and family life as well as your business. Whenever possible, get it — whatever it may be — done early and eliminate the stress and frustration of being pulled in a million directions.
Avoid the guilt of shushing your teething baby because of looming deadlines or groaning in frustration when the school nurse calls, or saying no — yet again — to a fun activity with your kids.
Now obviously, since I’m writing this post after 10 p.m., I’ve still got a long way to go in actually practicing this getting-it-done-early principle. But ever since reading this post, I’ve been consciously thinking about how implementing this principle would revolutionize my life–and cut down on a lot of stress!
You see, I’ve always been a late person. I was born 17 days late and it seems I’ve been late ever since. Whether it’s getting to an appointment or getting an article done, I’m almost always running behind–usually either just under the wire or late. Sometimes, really, really late.
In my lifetime, I’ve made a lot of excuses for my tardiness, but most all of them boil down to procrastination, improper prioritization, and a lack of planning ahead:
::Instead of planning to leave 30 minutes before I need to be out the door, I wait until 30 minutes before I need to leave to take my shower, get everyone dressed, gather up all the things we need for the outing, and get everyone out the door.
::Instead of looking at my calendar two or three weeks in advance, planning out articles I need to write, and writing them a week or two in advance, I often wait until the day they are due to even begin outlining them.
…And on and on it goes. No wonder there are many times I run around like a chicken with my head cut off!
Knowing the problem is good, but that doesn’t fix anything. I actually have to make changes if I want to experience any benefits. So I’m resolving to not just recognize the problem, but actually come up with a solution. Or at least begin working diligently in that direction!
In the next 24 hours, I’m going to sit down and map out a specific plan of action for a few of the areas where I especially struggle with getting things done on time. I’ll let you know my plan of action tomorrow.
1. Read Mandi’s fantastic article, The Secret of Success for a Work-At-Home Mom. Even if you’re not a work-at-home mom or not even a mom, you’ll find some great encouragement in it.
2. Choose one area that you especially struggle with being behind in or running late for.
2. Write down a simple plan for how you are going to stop procrastinating, start planning ahead, and begin getting things done early. Come back and share your plan with us so we can be inspired!
And if you’re one of those amazing people who is always on time or early and always has projects projects done before the deadline, would you do me a favor and share your secrets in the comments? I’d love to learn from you! Seriously. I need all the help I can get in this area!