As we’ve been going through this challenge, you’ve probably noticed that you need to get a lot done in the amount of time you have. When you’re focused on accomplishing a lot in just 14 days, you notice just how effective you need to be.
Hopefully, you’re looking at Facebook less than you normally do, as well as using your time strategically to finish each day’s challenge. There are distractions everywhere, but you know that you only have a limited amount of time before the challenge ends.
But what happens afterwards? How are you going to stay focused after the challenge is over?
I’m going to give you my best tactics for reclaiming your time and staying on track.
Eliminate Useless Input
My Millionaire Hustlers have a love-hate relationship with my advice. That’s because my time management advice is both simple and tough:
Stop ALL input UNLESS you can implement it in the next week.
Think about how much of your brain is tied up thinking about information that won’t help you improve your business immediately. Even the information that may be good for you in the long run, like all those email newsletters you sign up for and browse through, may be taking up valuable real estate between your ears that could be used more effectively.
Worse, dealing with all that input takes a ton of time. Even if you aren’t actually reading all the newsletters that wind up in your in-box (along with all the other input you get on a daily basis), you have to search through it to find messages you do need to respond to. Just sorting out your inbox can be overwhelming when you have too much information coming through.
Unsubscribing to Save Time
One of the biggest steps you can take to improving your efficiency is to unsubscribe from automated emails. Don’t bother going through your inbox and searching out each individual email newsletter, though.
THE TOOL TO SAVE ALL INBOXES!
Unroll.me provides a tool that will let you breeze through the process.
Sign up for Unroll.me’s free service and go through your email subscriptions. Unsubscribe or group together as many of your subscriptions as possible — eliminating more from your inbox is better. And don’t worry about accidentally deleting an email newsletter you actually want; if you add it to Unroll.me’s Rollup service, you’ll still get any emails sent to that list. You’ll just get those newsletters in a more controlled fashion.
Reducing Social Media Distractions
Social media takes so much time away from your other work. You may need to keep using social media to support your business, but you need to be mindful of the time you spend on sites like Facebook and Twitter.
ONE: Remove all of your social media apps from your phone
Delete Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and all the rest.
You’ll hate me for awhile, but it will be worth it! (You’ll thank me later)
Taking social media off your phone will let you control the time you spend on those sites more effectively. Not being able to easily check social media will help you be more present where you are. And, if you run into an emergency where you just have to check something, you can access those social media sites through your phone’s browser. Sure, the experience won’t be as good, but that will encourage you to get off your phone that much faster.
Facebook can be a special case due to the many different ways we use it to communicate. In order to make sure that you’re able to stay up to speed, here are two additional steps you should take to manage your social media:
TWO: Install a news feed eradicator for Facebook.
You’ll be able to access all the normal Facebook features with the exception of the news feed.
THREE: Install the Facebook Groups app on your phone to access this challenge’s Facebook group.
You won’t be able to get distracted by other information on Facebook while using your phone.
Using Timers to Increase Your Focus
Setting a timer for a specific period of time and concentrating on just one task during that period can be an effective way to get tasks done.
The Pomodoro Technique is especially useful: you work in 25-minute intervals, with 5-minute breaks between each. You can use any timer, though there are apps for your phone that are built just for the Pomodoro Technique. (Toggl.com is another great timer app, that you can time each task that you do – it helps you stay focused and helps you understand how long your tasks actually take!)
Let’s go over the basic process for the Pomodoro technique:
- Set a goal or task (like reading all your unread email or making fifteen cold calls). You can also work your way down a to-do list.
- Set your timer for 25 minutes.
- Focus just on the work you’ve set out for yourself — no checking social media or dealing with other distractions.
- After completing your 25 minutes, take a 5-minute break. Depending on what you’re doing during those 5 minutes, you may need to set another timer.
- Sign up for Unroll.me.
- Delete all social media apps from your phone, including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
- (Optional) Install the Facebook Groups app on your phone.
- Set up a timer (such as an app on your phone) for the Pomodoro Technique and try it out at least once.