Like many entrepreneurs I have trouble sleeping nights because I’ve allowed myself to be diverted.
You know you feel good when you go to bed at night and you’ve gotten that cheque of to the tax people, or finally paid down the phone bill, or any one of a number of administrative tasks that make you feel guilty.
You probably feel good too when you’ve spent time well establishing new contacts or maintaining old ones.
My main drive comes from The Prospector and all the data (leads) it generates for me. If I’m not careful the two to four leads a day build up into an avalanche of outstanding calls – 25 as I type.
The solution is really easy: Have a sheet of paper that you fill out at the very start of the day – before the coffee is poured. On the sheet you write the guilt that greeted you when you woke up.
Today for example my goal is “Reduce the backlog to five”; realistically there might be 5 contacts I just can’t reach in any shape or form. 25 is not acceptable, 5 is, and I don’t want to set a goal that might be impossible.
Below that I write Objectives, and these are not in a serial-project style, just a few just-for-today thoughts that will help me to reach today’s goal: “No personal emails”, “No game playing”, “No quick-fixes to your software” and so on. Yes, I play games, but for today ONLY I have promised myself no to, and to ignore personal chatter until after 5 p.m.
Just for Today
At the end of the day, when I start the daily backup procedures, I’ll take down the sheet of paper and examine myself. What went wrong? Let’s not do that again. What went right? Let’s keep on doing that!
Here you can see a blank sheet clipped to the laptop. I use a standalone monitor, so the laptop sits off to one side, but I’ll see the sheet whenever I
1) Reach for the phone
2) Turn to look out of the window to my left
3) Turn to look at my diary (out of view bottom left)
If you’d like a copy of the Microsoft Word document – comes with automatic date – you can download it here .
I have placed a shortcut link to this document as part of my first-boot-of-the-day sequence so that I’m prompted to print off and complete a copy first thing each morning.
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Here is a link to an article that promotes the idea of written feedback.