You may have noticed that I haven’t posted to this blog in about a year. That’s because, as with all things I eventually master, I somehow have to learn the hard way every single thing NOT to do first before I get it right. I started this blog in probably the most inefficient manner possible, and in like fashion I approached the task of becoming more efficient inefficiently (big surprise, right?). I slowly drowned in all the responsibilities and projects that life piled on and therefore could not, for time or character, publish to this blog in good conscience.
It was actually a bit of a mess, lol.
But the good news is that I have also learned what efficiency really is and how to become increasingly more efficient without the use of special organizational tools or having to read a library full of books on productivity.
And now I’m back from efficiency hell to tell you how to repent.
My worst year ever, in terms of productivity, has ushered in my best year to date, EVER. I’m getting things done now that I only dreamed of before, and my anxiety is down. Prioritizing has gotten easier and I am taking on less but getting more done.
And all that was required was a shift in perspective.
Efficiency Is An Approach, Not An Achievement
The first thing I learned was that efficiency is really a way of thinking and approaching life, not a productivity system to religiously follow.
That is, if you don’t want to become a mindless robot.
As a creative, I CAN’T just veg out and go back to the old salt mines and get up to make the donuts and be the robot on someone else’s schedule and agenda. If I don’t provide creative solutions to problems, I don’t eat. If I don’t do it fast enough, I also don’t eat. But you can’t robotize creativity.
So, I knew I couldn’t just find a nice box and think inside it. It was trying to fit into a box that was the problem! I was thinking more about other people and the work, loyalty, time, and attention I owed to them. I became obsessed with working smarter and burned myself out to the point that I didn’t want to work AT ALL. I was approaching the entire task of efficiency ineffectively because I made it about how I deal with outside influences.
You see, efficiency is all about the way you deal with YOURSELF, not your work. So, the answers for you won’t necessarily be the same as the answers for me, and they don’t have to be. It’s about learning 1) how you work and 2) when you’re strong so that you provide the proper support and techniques to bring the best out of yourself.
EFFICIENCY IS ABOUT MANAGING PERSONAL POWER, NOT TIME.
Once I realized that efficiency happens when I work on me and focus on doing whatever it takes to keep myself emotionally healthy and empowered, things began to fall into place.
So, now that the foundation is laid and many lessons have been learned, Efficiency 911 is officially BACK!
Here are some of the topics I plan to cover in the coming weeks:
Procrastination Is A Stress-Management Mechanism
Yup; you’re not lazy. You’re not a loser. You’re just trying to relieve work-related stress in the worst way possible – not actually working. That knowledge alone can change your life.
Efficiency and Productivity Are Natural
As an exquisitely complex and creative being made in the image of God, it is actually in your nature to become more efficient in your working over time. You see new ways to tweak performance as you master tasks, and then you do so. That is, if your focus and ego aren’t completely broken by society and everything negative in your life.
Efficiency Is Really Leadership
The problem with inefficient people is that we don’t have a proper relationship with self. Inefficient Ivo is a slave to everyone else’s needs, never replenishing herself in the name of having too much to do and never getting it all done because she is so burned out. It’s a horrible cycle, but ironically enough, the principles of good leadership and efficiency are pretty much the same! The only difference is in where they are applied.
I bope that you will join me in the next phase of this journey to becoming more efficient, and that you learn to love yourself in the process. Because you’re awesome and you’re worth it!