We entrepreneurs are both blessed and cursed.
On one hand, we have more control of when, where, and what kind of work we do.
On the other hand, most self-employed business people tend to end up working crazy hours.
Fortunately, there are some simple ways for you to start to do less while accomplishing more.
1. Use the 80/20 Rule
If you want to get more done in less time, create your daily work schedule around the Pareto principle.
This principle is also known as the 80/20 rule.
When you create your daily work schedule using the 80/20 rule you spend 80 percent of your day working on the most critical tasks.
The remaining 20 percent of your time is then spent on the menial, but necessary tasks.
2. Disconnect and Decompress
To accomplish more you need to keep your mind fresh and your energy levels up.
To do this, focus deeply for short periods (30 minutes) and then take frequent, short breaks from your work.
Don’t continue to push yourself all day under the assumption that you have to work full-on to achieve your goals.
Take frequent breaks throughout the day.
Disconnect from your email and phone calls.
Step away completely on the weekends.
These breaks from concentrated work will allow your brain to refresh and your body to recover.
3. Be Willing to Say “No”
Those who are really successful have to contend with many demands on their time.
Billionaire Warren Buffett, the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, has a theory on this subject worth exploring:
“The difference between successful people and really successful people, is that really successful people say ‘no’ to almost everything.”Warren Buffett
It is essential that you know what you want to accomplish and be willing to say no to other projects.
Saying “yes” to an opportunity you aren’t excited by carries an “opportunity cost”.
We have a limited amount of time and resources at our command.
If you’re not excited by an opportunity, it’s not an opportunity — it’s a responsibility.
Working less and achieving more is necessary for a balanced life.
If you can’t achieve that balance, you will quickly find yourself overwhelmed.
No-one wants to burn out because they took on more work than they needed to.
Prioritise your tasks and be willing to say “no” to other work and projects that don’t excite you.
4. Plan What You Want To Accomplish Daily
Most entrepreneurs have a long-term plan on how they’re going to reach their goals.
But when it comes to the details, many fail to plan and prioritise their days.
When your efforts are scattered throughout the day, you aren’t able to focus.
Lack of focus equals lack of achievement.
If you want to get more done, you need to set some time aside to plan the details.
Take some time every evening to plan out and prioritise the work you need to accomplish the next day.
Make sure you plan to complete at least one significant task every day.
Significant tasks are those which move you forward toward achieving your goals.
5. Outsource Work Wherever You Can
Think about the 20 percent of menial, but necessary jobs that you have to complete every day.
Can you outsource these tasks to a freelance or contract worker?
If there is somebody else who can do a task more efficiently than you, hire them.
When you come across a new task that needs doing think “who” not “how”.
Instead of thinking “how can I do this?” ask “who can do this for me?”.
Outsourcing work you are not skilled for, or don’t enjoy, allows you to focus on those tasks only you can do for your business.
You don’t have to change your entire working method overnight.
But if you adopt these five time management strategies you will immediately improve your productivity.