Okay, Okay, I admit, I am a creative soul. I DO get easily distracted with all matter of “shiny objects.” The creative itch in me wants to explore, create, have fun, and dive into new projects just for the experience. If you are at all like this, you know that this can be the best part of your living experience. So, I say this with all genuine intention: never let go of this part of yourself! It serves you and makes you who you are, perfect at your core.
When I ask the question, are you easily distracted, I mean to talk about something totally different than whether you like to play with play-doh on your lunch break. Instead, I am referring to that thing that happens when you have created a self-imposed deadline on a project that is important to your business, and your livelihood. You know what I mean, like when Youtube begins calling your name, or when Facebook Posts seem ultra-interesting all of the sudden, and when you must write a two-page letter to some animal rights advocacy group because wolves are being harassed and called names by native village people in Gnome, Alaska. It is self-created distraction. The way that you know it is self-created is because nobody, especially not a paying client, asked you to do it. You invented that distraction. Don’t worry, you aren’t in trouble, and there is a cure.
You see, in order to survive in business, I had to come to a realization. That realization is that there are two sides to me. One side likes to have fun, play, be goofy, and explore. The other side loves to get stuff done, provide for my family, and strive for excellence in my daily experience. The other thing I realized is that one DOES NOT thrive without the other. This is great news for all you fun lovers out there who can’t resist spending copious amounts of time laughing at your computer screen while you watch Youtube videos.
Now, putting the serious side of me into action on a regular basis had it’s challenges. I first had to accept that “structure” was a necessary component to my success. If I could showcase that word “structure” with shiny lights, and showgirls to bring attention to it in this blog, I would, because it used to seem like such a big and bold word to me. Creatives don’t tend to like being told what to do, and structure, in it’s nature, confines you taking only certain actions. Whaaaaa??!!! YES. But if you think about it, when you have structure, you can achieve what you want. So, what I did was simply shift my context.
You might ask, “how did you shift your context?” Don’t worry, it is not hard, here is how you do it: Think about what you are committed too, such as providing for your family. Envision the amount of money you want to make that would have them be provided for, and more. Make up a generous number. Wait for it….here comes the shift….when you envision your family eating well, enjoying each others company at events that cost money, wearing clothes that make them feel good, vacationing together without limitation…putting structure into your day all of the sudden seems easy. When you are working toward something you are committed to, and have that present in your mind, you are more likely to stay on task.
Here is the kicker, and you must find a way to do this. When you are sitting down to structure your time for the day, either the night before, or the morning of, make sure to create some time for goofing around and having fun. Honor that part of you that wants to express their creativity. When you do, a calm will come over you when you “get down to business.”
Here is to you having the most productive year of your life! And, here is to your family feeling loved by you when you get it all done and are able to be home in time for dinner.