Work Smarter, Avoid Screen Time Burn Out-Get More Done In Your Day
I've got a confession and a secret (and a tip) to share...
Your brain can't tell the difference between what you plan to do, and what you have done, and it may be sabotaging you.
True story. I fell into the trap. I'm a learn it all. A teacher and a scholar by nature. I research and DEVELOP plans constantly. My brain is working on business 24/7. 5 minutes here, 10 minutes there. At the end of the day, I was surprised to see that my action list had very little checked off. Yet I was so sick of thinking about Instagram and Facebook and blogs, that I couldn't even squeak out 10 minutes at the computer to get the work done. Why? My brain thinks I've already done it. All day long.
It is hard work to not be connected 24/7 when feeding the piggy bank is tied to your smartphone. But one of the number one reasons I've heard from people who have left a DS business is that "it required too much time". Most (not all, but most) of the time it's simply not true. We've just conditioned our brains to believe that the things we have read about, or read that others have done, or even planned for ourselves-we have ACTUALLY done. We haven't.
So how do you stop your brain from burning you out before you've gotten the work done? Construct your perfect work day. Now for some of you, this is 2 hrs, for others it's 10. That's up to you and your business expectations and there is no right answer.
- Schedule time for planning. This can even included self development. Make it part of your work day. Plan out what you will get done later during your action hours.
- Schedule time for action. This is the time you spend on the things you thought about during planning. This includes scheduling posts and creating graphics.
- Schedule time for income producing activities. If you can't make a dollar from this activity, it doesn't belong here.
- Schedule time for interaction. Responding to emails, messages, phone calls and meaningful social media engagement-liking and commenting on posts.
- Labor hours. If you carry inventory, you will spend time on presentation, delivery, and reverse logistics.
Here's the important step: you must put your phone down in between. When work happens on a smartphone or computer, every time you pick it up, your brain thinks work is happening and the burn out clock starts ticking. I like to set mine down and set a 30-45 minute timer. When it goes off, I pick up my phone and scroll for a few...if I MUST lol. When I see things as I'm scrolling, I ss and copy links to my notebook in my phone so that I can plan and take action on them later.
Brains CANNOT multitask. We're kidding ourselves. They can switch context and attention, but they cannot multitask. So when you sit down to dinner and decide to answer emails, your brain will help you do both, but chances are it will prioritize your emails. So at bedtime, it's like dinner with the kids never happened. That's not cool.
So settle in, write out a plan and stick to it.