Previously I wrote about the need to establish a budget (time and money), and then about the pressure of information overload when starting out in World wide web Marketing. This day I will look at the problem of having your life in chaos trying to keep track of all that you are trying to accomplish.
I would like to share with you a number of the techniques I used to help cope with the need to keep a momentum going and also the need to learn and absorb as much of the data that is coming down the pipe to you. I will break these down into separate articles as they apply to different aspects of your business.
The short story is that to be able to cope and not feel as if you are continually playing catch-up, is to be ORGANIZED. Yep, simple, is not it – NOT! Most of the time, as we go along on our way, there is \’stuff\’ that we leave to do later – this accumulates and by the end of the week there is a big pile of emails that still need replying to, articles that still need to be written or posted, the blog is out of date…..yadda, yadda, yadda. When it gets to this point, we feel as though we are overwhelmed and start to be less productive.
Here is the Silver Bullet! (I bet you thought that there were no Silver Bullets left)
STOP EVERYTHING! Yes, stop doing everything and MAKE yourself give over about 4 hours where you will not look at emails, web pages, answer phones etc. These 4 hours will be used to take a good look at how you are doing things and make a plan to get everything on track.
It is not a big deal – quite simple to start in fact. Go to the basic actions you do every day.
* EMAILS – this is probably one of the major time wasters and causes of getting behind – if you do not manage the system right. Firstly, make a rule that you will only read and act on (or download) emails 3 times a day – you figure the times, but restrict yourself to 15 minutes, three times a day. (Don\’t panic – you will be amazed at how much you will get through in a concentrated 15 minutes, besides you will be doing it 3 times – a whole 45 minutes of email time per day!!)
(Hopefully by now you will have set up your desktop email program to retrieve the emails from your various POP3 mailboxes and deposit them locally – big time saver – one click and all the mail comes whooshing in!!!)
Next, take some time to setup your email program so that it is semi-automated. The idea here is to create rules for incoming mails so that they do not all get into your primary inbox and cause a big mess that takes hours to sort through.
An simple way to do this is to identify the emails that you can group – from a specific sender, or a specific topic – whatever. Then set up a rule (check out your email program) that picks up the emails as soon as they come into your inbox and then moves them to the folder you have set up. Also, setup a rule that will delete emails that you would not normally bother with – this takes a bit of time to figure out, but maybe initially just move them into a PENDING folder and then scan it briefly and do a manual mass delete when satisfied there is nothing of importance.
What you are doing here is YOU are deciding what to read when. This way you are able to pop in at your intervals and browse a folder without getting bogged down in \’chaff\’. You are already on the way to grabbing back control.
Over the next few articles I will be tackling all of the various time-wasting activities that cause us to slow-down. Please drop a line to my email if there is something specific you feel could be written about.
If I can leave you with one thought for today: Tidy up your mind as well as your workspace. If everything is where you want it without having to scratch around, you will save minutes that add up to hours each week.
About the Author
Steve Castle is a respected Internet Marketer who is committed to ethically helping others to achieve their financial freedom. mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.ask-a-southafrican.co.uk/pips.html http://www.xponentialsystems.co.uk/ http://www.triseven.ws