Earlier yesterday I was discussing with a client our respective holidays this year. She runs her own small and growing business and is an expert in what she does. However, the problem at the moment is – she is “Too Busy”. I’m sure you know that feeling – and I can certainly relate.
Recently my clients business has been growing rapidly but she is uncertain about hiring someone – although she really needs to. When I asked her why I heard exactly what I expected her to say. I haven’t got time to train anybody. I get that, I really really do. It is painful to spend the time to train someone new when you literally don’t have time in the day to stop for lunch or even nip to the loo!
But you see, what happens then is that nothing changes – and of course – because she is so great at what she does she just keeps getting new clients recommended to her, or meeting people when she is networking, and this is just more and more work for her and her business partner to do, and they are already working 14 hour days and most weekends.
And then what happens? Yes – things start to go wrong. Little things were getting away from her. Things she would normally automatically do, were being forgotten. The children were feeling a bit neglected and were playing up as a result. And even the dog, sensing the stress, was acting up a bit too.
She was so stressed. And believe me – I have been there. So I told her to go walk around the block and find somewhere to sit and just breathe, for 20 minutes.
Because you see, when you are ‘too busy’ you are often not in the moment, you are trying to concentrate on the job in hand when all the while your brain is in the future – thinking of all the things you have to do on your To Do list, or you are in the past, thinking about yesterday and if only you had done that report/made that call/emailed that person – then you wouldn’t have it to do right now.
She looked at me as if I was crazy – ‘listen, Carole, I don’t really have time to be having this meeting with you, let alone go for a walk?’. I can be persuasive and so we walked, and we talked and we laughed. And then we talked again about what she could do differently this afternoon to start to chip away at the (perceived) mountain she had to scale.
About an hour ago, I got a text saying she had gone back to her desk with a clearer and less frantic mind, with a renewed sense of priorities. She had spent 15 minutes finding someone on Upwork to do a job that had saved her 2 hours, and she had reprioritised the To Do list and had accomplished more in the last few hours than she had for a few days.
Just by having a bit of headspace.
Sometimes we need to step OUT of our business to be able to work ON the business and create the step changes we need to take the business to the next level.
Do yourself a favour and take 20 minutes today to just breathe, and think about whether everything that is on YOUR To DO list actually needs doing, and if it does – whether it needs to be YOU doing it.