As the weather gets nicer and the doors closed by the pandemic start to open up more, it might feel a bit harder to find clarity at work. Maybe you'll find yourself putting off tasks, or avoiding them altogether. I know the struggle all too well myself: procrastination. It's so easy to do, but such a tough habit to break.
Procrastination means doing everything but the work you actually need to be doing. Maybe your goals are small, like “try out the new camera”, or big like “launch new website.” Whatever your tasks, I believe that lack of clarity is a huge cause of procrastination.
“A lack of clarity is what makes your work feel like work. It's what makes stuff feel really hard”
Finding clarity around your goals is so important to making those dreams your reality. When you're an independent business owner, you're setting up your own tasks on a daily basis. You are responsible for your own success. You're also responsible for your own enjoyment of your work. A lack of clarity will make work feel dull, difficult, and uninspired. Finding clarity, on the other hand, can make it feel like your work is also your play. So, what can you do?
This is just one exercise I have for finding clarity.
“Just give yourself 20 minutes, uninterrupted. Set a timer and write about yourself.”
Make sure you're in a quiet room without your phone on, and write about future you, in present tense. Imagine yourself one quarter in the future. Imagine what that self would say. Use sentences like, “I'm finding out a lot about _____.” Or, “I feel clear in my mind because___”, or “I've learned____”, or “I'm really glad that I___.” Whatever it is, write about your future self in present tense. The aim here is to imagine moving forward in your business. Trust me, about 10 minutes you'll start to find stuff. If you're really, really stuck, keep going: it gets easier as approach the 20 minute mark.
How does this help with procrastination, you ask? Well, when you're forcing yourself to sort of think through positive, desired outcomes, to sit in them emotionally as if they've already happened, it's really powerful for clarity. When we start journaling, when we give ourselves this quiet space to just kind of write it all out. It will slowly orient your brain to work on tasks related to the vision you're experiencing.
“When you're done, read it. Read it to yourself tomorrow, and read it to yourself the next day. Try to stick to incorporating it into your routine for a week or two. Exercises like this work because typically the stuff that we, deep down inside, really want, will start to bubble to the surface.”
If you feel overwhelmed by your to-do list, but don't actually get around to the tasks at hand, try this exercise. The 20 minutes will fly by and you'll be a heck of a lot more clear on your goals and how to accomplish them by the end of it.
I'm always trying to share what I've learned in the last almost 11 years in this business full-time, and I want you to share back, too! Let me know how this exercise goes for you, and what you learn about yourself in the process. Shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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