When you see snippets of the lives of successful entrepreneurs online, you usually only get a certain section of the “highlight reel.”
That is, you’ll maybe see an artsy shot of someone sitting with their laptop in an attractive home office, with a cup of coffee, followed by shots of globetrotting to exotic locations, and all that other good stuff that everyone who’s ever dreamt of being a “Digital Nomad” desires.
Of course, as you’d expect, being a successful entrepreneur actually entails a good deal of hard work, and not just a state of permanent vacation.
Building a business is not an easy thing, nevermind keeping the business up and running, and making it successful.
While there are many different things that go into establishing a successful business as an entrepreneur, it may just be the case that effective time management comes out on top as the most important single factor.
Here are a few tips on how to use your time most effectively as an entrepreneur.
Identify actions that will allow you to “get the most bang for your buck”
The “80/20” rule is popular among many successful people in the business world, because it really seems to be an effective little heuristic for handling your time wisely.
Basically, the 80/20 rule argues that 80% of the positive results you get, will come from 20% of your actions. The other 80% of your actions account for only 20% of your positive results.
What this means, then, is that optimising your time is largely going to be about identifying those “20%” of most productive actions, and dedicating as much of your time to them as possible. The less productive “80%” actions? Best to try and cut those out.
If you’re marketing your business, certain strategies are simply likely to be far more effective than others. Using the services of an influencer marketing agency, for example, may well be incredibly effective, because it brings on board individuals who are already experts at marketing themselves, and who typically have large social media followings on standby.
If you want to use your time effectively to succeed as an entrepreneur, identify those actions that will allow you to get the most bang for your buck, and limit the amount of time you spend on all other things.
Remove potential sources of distraction from the equation, as much as possible
We all like to think that we have perfect willpower, and decide our own path the vast majority of the time.
In reality, though, a lot of psychological research shows that people are, generally speaking, naturally inclined to follow the path of least resistance.
One of the ominous things about
What that means is that, when you find yourself wasting hours surfing the web mindlessly, it’s likely not just your fault. It’s also because the services and platforms that have grabbed your attention are designed to be really effective at hijacking your innate reward mechanisms.
To use your time as effectively as possible, it really pays to remove potential sources of distraction from the equation, to the greatest extent you possibly can.
If you find that you spend a significant amount of the working day checking certain websites, for example, consider using a tool such as Freedom to block those sites during certain times, or even to block the whole Internet during certain times.
Time block your day, and get used to sticking to your routine
If you start the day with a checklist of what you’d like to achieve, and just randomly try and knock out different items in the list throughout the day in a haphazard fashion, you’re by no means going to be as productive as you otherwise could.
A good deal of research shows that to really be productive, and to enter a “flow” state, it’s essential to work undistracted for large blocks of time. That means no checking your phone, no switching to other tasks, et cetera.
The way you achieve this is by “time blocking” your day, and then sticking to the routine you’ve laid out meticulously.
“Time blocking” essentially means writing out your schedule in a daily planner format, and fitting your tasks and projects into different timeslots.