This blog has little bit of everything...

Saturday, October 15, 2016

How Being Action Oriented Takes You Way Ahead Of Competition?

Lets face it. Most of us have a problem with being action oriented. Most of us love to tell ourselves: 
I will do it tomorrow or I will do it after sometime or some other day. 

Most of us realize that few tasks are really important for our personal growth. But we always find one reason or another to postpone these tasks. Here are the most common reasons or lies we tell ourselves:
  • I am physically fit, I don't need to exercise daily. I will do it when I need it.
  • I am not yet ready for a job change or role change. I don't want to take additional responsibility as of now. I am happy with what I have.
  • I know this certification is important for me but I will do it next month because the festive season has just started I have guests visiting my place and on top of that I have to attend my cousin's wedding this month.
Even though these are extremely important actions but still we are reluctant to do things for our future. Have you ever wondered why? Let us look at some of the top causes/ reasons:

  • Undervaluing the future. The future prospect looks lucrative to you but is not exciting enough for you to act. In the back of your mind you probably undervalue it.
  • You may also be overvaluing the present. That is the cause of being in the comfort zone. One day when you realize that the current comfort will not last forever, that day, action will happen automatically. Don't wait for that day.
  • Not valuing at all. There is a possibility that you have not even understood the impact of inaction and not rightly valued the future. Probably you are ignorant. For example, look how small investments can grow by power of compounding. How To Make Rs 65 Lakhs By Investing Rs 12,500 Per Month?.
  • Procrastination. You may have the habit of prioritizing the lesser important tasks over more important tasks because the lesser important tasks are more pleasurable.
  • Plain laziness. There is a possibility that you are just plain lazy. You just love to be laid back. This is a difficult fact to face but be honest with yourself, check it out for yourself and fix it on top priority.
So we are our biggest competitors, more than the others the fight is within us to beat ourselves and become the best version of us.

Here are some of the tools/ techniques to get better and beat ourselves...

The reason why I am able to write some of the above points is because I have experienced some of these myself. Here is what I suggest we should do...

Be focused

A very effective way to get productive results is to be focused on one job at at time. Avoid patterns of Brownian motion in the way you think and act. Once you have decided your goal and chosen the path that you want to take then stick to it. Don't make frequent changes in your action plan. If you make frequent changes then there are chances that you may get lost in the path to success.
Utilize Short Spurts
Another idea is to utilize ‘Short spurts’ of energy and passion. Here is what I do…
Push myself to do a little more in my short spurt…
  1. When I go for a walk or a jog. I keep a target and then push myself a little more to go for one extra lap.
  2. When I give myself a target of writing 1 blog post per week, I push myself to write 1 or 2 extra blog posts for the month.
  3. When I am about to finish my work I check the list of pending items and push myself to complete one more additional task for that day.
Pomodoro Technique

As per Wikipedia the Pomodoro technique is defined as below:
The Pomodoro Technique is a time management method developed by Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980s. The technique uses a timer to break down work into intervals, traditionally 25 minutes in length, separated by short breaks. These intervals are named pomodoros, the plural in English of the Italian word pomodoro (tomato), after the tomato-shaped kitchen timer that Cirillo used as a university student. The method is based on the idea that frequent breaks can improve mental agility.
Utilize this time management technique to be focused on your task and work on it for 25 minutes without any distraction. You can set a timer to record the time and take about 5 minutes breaks between consecutive pomodoros. While in a pomodoro you can note down any mental distractions/ thoughts on a paper but if the distraction is bigger then you may need to abandon the pomodoro and start over again because a pomodoro is 25 minutes of focused time where you can work on a task with full flow and with undivided attention.

Last but not the least, develop a habit of delayed gratification and try to get away from instant gratification. This will help you plan for a better future. 

The point I am trying to make is, (a) be focused (b) when you know that you are doing well in your short spurt then just push yourself a little more (c) Utilize time management techniques like pomodoro to get maximum results (d) Live life to the fullest, enjoy the present moment but make every possible effort for a better tomorrow. Because even before you blink, today will become yesterday and tomorrow will become today.

Small is beautiful, lets us learn to appreciate the value of small efforts. This will help you become action oriented and be the best version of yourself. Eventually you will be able to finish more tasks than what your competitors do. As a result you will be able to draw that little competitive advantage which you can utilize to stay ahead of them in anything and everything you do.

Remember the quote: Success is the sum of small efforts - repeated day in and day out.