This One Thing Keeps You From Being Productive
by Amber De La Garza, The Productivity Specialist
If you had to pinpoint just one thing that keeps you from being productive, what would it be?
Too much to do? Noisy co-workers? Outdated technology? Unnecessary meetings? Too many emails? Office gossip? Demanding kids? Now consider, does that thing really keep you from being productive or do you allow that distraction to hold more power over your time than it should? Perhaps you even invite certain distractions in, fully allowing them to inhibit you from working productively? You know, habits like scrolling Facebook, Snapchatting, or taking extra-long lunches with girlfriends when you know you should be generating leads.
Maintaining a victim mindset that something is being done to you to prevent your productivity, keeps you on the treadmill of mediocrity. It ensures you will never reach your full potential personally or professionally. As a self-employed real estate professional, it’s your responsibility to create and maintain an environment that supports your productivity. No one’s going to do that for you. Once you take full accountability for your productivity, you’ll be empowered to improve it which will start a ripple effect of positive changes in every area of your life. You’ll feel less stressed, be less overcommitted, and have more time to not only grow your business but spend time doing what you’re passionate about with the people who matter most. You don’t need a Mastercard to understand how priceless those things are.
So what nonsense do you tell yourself that prevents you from getting needle-moving work done in your business? I just don’t have the time to…? If only there were less…? I couldn’t make it happen because...? I know I should but…? If my employees would just...? My business partner was supposed to...? These are all just excuses holding you back from taking earth-moving actions in your business that are necessary to double your revenue, put out a new product, start your own brokerage, or enter a luxury market. We all have voiced excuses from time to time as to why we’re not working on our highest value activities. Once in a while, your excuses may be warranted. Sickness, death, divorce, and other major life events can rightfully throw you off track for a time. Most excuses, though, are simply convenient scapegoats so you don’t have to put effort into taking action and changing a habit. Doing nothing is often easier in the short term but it comes at a cost.
One summer I found myself saying, “My son is keeping me from being productive.” The truth is I was keeping myself from being productive because I was allowing him to walk into my office and distract me all day long with his questions and stories. I fixed my problem by waking up every day at 3:30 am to accomplish my most important work - hours before he woke up! Choosing to work at a different time of day made a huge difference in the amount and quality of work I was able to accomplish. If I wasn’t a morning person, I could have waited until my son went to bed to work on my highest value activities. Or perhaps, I could have threatened to take his technology or toys away if he opened my office door one more time for a non-emergency. We all have needs and we all have options. What I needed and obtained for myself was just a few hours of focused work time each day. For the rest of each day, I worked on less important items that required minimal focus so it didn’t matter nearly as much when my son interrupted my concentration.
Contrary to popular belief, your productivity isn’t determined by the number of incoming emails, papers, and phone calls you have to deal with. Every real estate professional has their fair share and you surely know a few who are performing leaps and bounds ahead of the competition! What matters is how you deal with everything that comes your way and more importantly, how proactive you are in managing foreseeable tasks and challenges. Being productive is a choice and that choice is up to you! Every day you must choose to spend your time wisely, working on the tasks that lead directly to achieving your goals, instead of allowing other people, events, and distractions to dictate where your time is spent. If you’ve been stumbling around on a plateau of minimal production, sorry, but you’re to blame. It’s time to take charge of your destiny and your productivity. The sooner you do, the quicker you’ll increase your profits, reduce your stress, and engineer a life you want to be living.
About the Contributor
Amber De La Garza is The Productivity Specialist! Amber is a sought-after coach, trainer, speaker, writer, host of the Productivity Straight Talk podcast, and creator of S.T.O.P.! The Entrepreneur’s Success Solution. She helps driven real estate professionals execute actionable solutions to maximize profits, reduce stress, and make time for what matters most!