If you feel completely in control of your daily life, hugely self-confident, get the most important things done first and in good time and don’t suffer from stress, then this article is not for you!
If, however, you feel you would like to change your daily life, manage the overwhelm better and desist from always being in the 11th hour, then practice these top tips until they become a habit for you and turn to them when you feel you are slipping back into your old way of being. Improving your effectiveness means making the best and conscious use of all the natural resources you have at your disposal e.g. your talents, strengths, skills, energy and your use of time. In essence this is about managing yourself better.
- You Matter!
You absolutely must believe this of yourself. If you don’t, I suggest you practice a daily mantra, first thing in the morning and last thing before you go to sleep of ‘I matter!’ You can of course repeat it to yourself several times during the day too, but at a minimum, please say this with passion morning and evening.
Become healthily selfish and put your own oxygen mask on first! You cannot support and manage life and work situations if you cannot manage yourself. Self-management is your ability to regulate your emotions, thoughts and behaviours effectively in different situations. This includes managing stress, recognising and controlling your impulses, motivating yourself and setting and working towards your personal and professional goals.
- Set some small milestones.
When you identify those areas you most want to improve, write down exactly what it is you want to change, why and how you are going to do it. It takes 21 days to form a habit (good or bad!) and so, when you start changing the way you think, feel and behave, practice this daily for a minimum of 21 days. Notice how you feel in this time and also, the impact this has on everyone in your daily life, at home, with your friends and in your workplace. When your changes become habitual, move onto the next most important one for you and again, practice for 21 days.
- Start your Effectiveness Journal.
Set your intention to improve your personal effectiveness and write down the milestones you have set for yourself and the timeline for when you plan to achieve them. Remember, don’t rush to do everything at once – you don’t want to overwhelm yourself!
At the end of each day, write down at least one thing you achieved that day and three things you are grateful for. This is combining your gratitude journal with your effectiveness journal and an attitude of gratitude is proven to help improve your overall wellbeing and effectiveness.
- You’re not alone! Plan weekly self-development actions.
Every week plan to learn something new from YouTube, Blog Posts, short online courses on personal development etc. Join the vast online communities and engage with others in terms of how they are progressing, and apply what you learn by adding them to your milestones. Start small until you build up this practice and take it in bite sizes until you feel ready (or not) to enrol in a more ambitious course or programme.
- Value Your Free Time
This is linked to you trying to achieve a sustainable work/life balance. Your resilience is developed by recharging your ‘batteries’. When you leave work physically, you need to learn to leave it in your head too! Do not feel guilty especially when you have put in a serious day’s work, and remember, the more recharged you are the more productive you will be. If you continuously work excessive hours, your focus, productivity and effectiveness will nosedive and there will be consequences. For you, your colleagues, your clients, end-users and the organisation you work for – so work to keep yourself away from this scenario.
Do you know what activities actually restore your energy levels today? Is it a walk in the fresh air, a bike ride, hiking or hill-walking, team sports, meditation, going to a movie, reading, some retail therapy or just chilling with your family? Notice over time what really recharges you and build more of this into your spare time.
I do hope you find some helpful tips here, they are tried and tested, and the key to improving your own personal effectiveness is firstly, setting the intention to do so, and secondly consciously applying some of the above tips.
I wish you well in your effectiveness building and if you would like to connect with me about anything, please do – firstname.lastname@example.org.
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