How many times a day do you say, "I don't have time" or "I don't have enough time"? Lack of time is a common problem that plagues every small business owner. A rock-solid solution to create more time is needed in today's time-crunched environment.
Generally, we don't have time for one simple reason -- we don't have time. Unfortunately, we can't manufacture more in the back room so we're left to figure out a better way to use the 24 hours we have.
During a recent coaching call, a client voiced her frustrated with all she "had to do and not enough time" dilemma. "I can't get anything done," she announced. "Not enough time" was merely the symptom. We wanted to get to the source of her challenge to implement permanent strategies to prevent the problem from reoccurring.
To discover what was really going on, she completed a series of exercises. First, she made a list of everything she did in a day, from morning reading to personal care to time spent eating to activities at work. Then, she assigned the amount of time she needed for each activity. The results were eye opening! Even using modest time projections, she needed a 33-hour day to accomplish all she needed to accomplish.
We had a good chuckle over the absurdity of a 33-hour day. The source of her lack of time and accompanying overwhelm were apparent. Her expectations exceeded reality. While realigning expectations to fit reality was one strategy, there was more left to do to create more time.
The Small Business Owners Guide to More Time
Here are the 3 strategies to create more time and get more done:
Buy it. You don't have to do it all. In fact, doing it all bottlenecks your business growth. Identify tasks you're currently doing and hire someone qualified to take over. Most small business owners can easily acquire 5-10 hours a week by outsourcing activities like blog posting, bookkeeping, filing, etc.
Find it. Tracking commitments and time requirements makes one painfully aware of the growing number of obligations. Rather than pile on, pare down commitments that do not advance your personal or professional goals. You'll soon discover a goldmine of extra time.
Create it. Thinking out of the box is helpful when creating extra time. For instance, if you want to keep up with the latest business trends and keep yourself healthy, listen to podcasts during a brisk morning walk. Walk, rather than drive, your deposit to the bank. Rather than spend time filing and organizing paper, go paperless using Evernote. Automate repetitive activities.
Have you ever considered what you do in a day that requires your time and attention? Given the restrictions of a 24-hour day, creativity and innovation is your best approach for creating more time.
We'd love to hear from you. What are some of the ways you create more time and get more done?