Now that you’ve set yourself up for success, it’s time to execute on your plans and produce results. You have a calendar with your daily tasks as well as time blocks scheduled. Go through and take care of each task, using buffer and catch-up time as you need it.
One note on buffer time: it should be used as a last resort. Don’t waste this time just because you have it marked off on your calendar. There will be occasions when you really need it. If you don’t need it, use the time effectively to get more work done or recoup your energy.
As you go through each day and take care of your to do list, various things may trip you up or distract you from your priorities. Here are some best practices to keep you on track:
Watch the Clock
Keep an eye on the time so that you don’t run over your allotments. The best way to do this is using a timer. An ordinary kitchen timer will do, or the timer on your phone. Set it so that you can focus on your task, and the alarm will let you know when it’s time to move on.
Take The “Is This Necessary?” Test
Before starting each task, ask yourself whether it’s truly necessary. Is it something that will help you get toward a specific goal? Is it something you can delegate to someone else or automate? Try to eliminate tasks before you start them, especially if it’s something you hadn’t already planned on doing and which has come up unexpectedly.
See It Through
If you decide to work on a task for one hour, stick to that one hour. Don’t stop in the middle or start doing something else. You considered priorities thoroughly when you made your schedule, so see it through. If you feel that a task is wasting time or doesn’t need the block allotted, make the necessary adjustment for next time.
Arrange your work environment so that there are no distractions. Turn off phone notifications and stay off social media. Let others know you’re busy if you don’t want to be distracted. If something comes up or you’re interrupted, tell the person you’ll handle it later.
Don’t Be a Perfectionist
Sometimes, when you’re focusing on getting things done, perfectionism can hold you back. Try to turn off that voice in the back of your head and remember that you can always go back later and tweak or edit. There’s always something that can be improved, so aim for ‘good enough’ rather than perfect.
Make Use of Waiting Time
If there’s a delay in completing a task, try to use this time productively. For example, you’re waiting for an update on an app before you can do your work. While it’s updating, see if you can make some headway on another task or part of the task. This isn’t multitasking per se, but just a way to be more efficient.
Look for Shortcuts
Always look for shortcuts you can use, like templates or automations. One handy short cut is brandable, done-for-you content – also called Private Label Rights or PLR content. This is content that you purchase and which includes a license that allows you to edit, repurpose for your needs, and put your name and branding on.
- Download a timer app or find a kitchen timer that you can use to stay on track.
- Once you’ve gone through the first day with your new system, reflect on how it went, asking yourself:
- What did you get done?
- What did you not get done that you were supposed to?
- What distracted you?
- What helped you work faster?
- Which tasks needed more than you blocked?
- Which tasks needed less time than you blocked?
- Are you trying to do too many things?
- Is anything taking longer than it’s worth?
- Are there any tasks that would be better done at different times of day than you did them today?
- What kind of shortcuts could you use and where can you find them?
- Can you delegate anything?
- What changes do you need to make?
- After your first week with the 3P system, reflect on what you’ve done and the progress you’ve made towards your goals. After several days of using the system, you should have a solid understanding of what changes can be made for better efficiency.