Does it seem like you have neither the time nor knowledge to do it yourself? Do you wonder how ‘everyone else’ manages the psychological pressure when things get tough?
Recently I wrote about the most common problems keeping CEOs up at night, this post, however, is directed to those of you waking up with burning ambitions but feeling like you’ll never get it all done.
I promise this is not a waste of time and I’m not going woo-woo on you. There are many great studies on how being grateful makes us happier and on how happiness is a precursor for success.
So write down three things you are grateful for. It could be as small as being grateful for having a good night’s rest or that an order came through on time or it could be something bigger or longer term. Maybe it’s that you finally got started on item five on your to-do list.
You could be grateful for your health, your family, the fact that you even have a business or a position that you can build on. Whatever, that’s for you to do.
2 Stop Doing it All at Once
Stop doing it all and stop doing it all at once.It turns out that 98% of the population doesn’t multi-task very well and chances are you are part of the 98% so stop multitasking and start doing things well (and up to 40% better).
Problem-solving and mastering it, doesn’t have to be a big deal in itself. Start small and break down the problem into bite-sized pieces. Start by approaching each of your workplace
problems as “an inquiry starting from given conditions to investigate” – this is how mathematicians and physicists define problems – isn’t it great?
Start chunking down that thing you want to achieve. Make each component bite-sized and only focus on the one portion you can chew at a time, you’ll actually get more done and in a less stressful way.
3 Share Your Problems
You know those sayings ‘a problem shared is a problem halved’ or ‘two heads are better than one’? Well there are actually statistics on how effective it is to work with other people on a problem. If you can’t see clear on how to move faster or better or how to navigate the next step on the ladder, use the collective team intelligence around you.
Sharing with others what you would like to achieve will help you look beyond the obvious because everyone will have a unique view and understanding of your work. They will also have a unique perspective on how to approach a problem.
So ask for another’s opinion, take in their valuable views and see what solutions naturally float to the top. And remember, it’s okay to collaborate, teams solve problems faster.
4 Get a Coach or a Mentor
In a similar vein, everyone needs a ‘coach’ or a mentor if they truly want to be the best and see the results, a successful person who you look to for advice, insight, and guidance.
Some would argue that the difference between coaching and mentoring is more semantics than anything, but to me, there is a significant difference between a coach and a mentor.
Here’s what I say when someone asks ‘what is a coach?’ or ‘what is a mentor?’
Coaching is a service. Mentoring is a gift. I wrote about this in depth here: The Coach vs. Mentor Debate
5 Remember Success Never Happens Overnight.
This is something I speak about quite a bit. It’s actually one of my A-ha moments from the book The Slight Edge which changed my whole approach to life personally and professionally, particularly how I work with organisations for success. I shared about it as part of, 5 Books that Inspire Change for Personal and Organisational Success.
I love pretty much everything about the philosophies of this book but I particularly love Chapter 6 which talks about the challenges of a quantum leap culture.
Quantum leaps relate to the instant gratification culture we’ve become and how it’s not about the big things that happen in your life, it’s about little things you do, consistently. The simple concept of putting one foot in front of the other, and doing it even when you have all the good reasons not to get up off the couch and do.
There’s no such thing as an overnight success. Success (like failure and problem solving) does not just happen. It
develops progressively over time. When you work it to your favour, toward a goal or ambition, taking small steps consistently, every day, that is using The Slight Edge.