You’re starting a fitness business. You’re excited, you’re anxious; raring to go. But if you’re not a master at consistently being productive now, you’d better figure out how to do it before you open your doors. Starting a fitness boot camp requires you to manage your time and mental energy very carefully. Learning to be productive now will get your business off on the right foot and will also mean that once your business is wildly successful, you’ll know how to get sh** done efficiently so that you can enjoy your life.
Entrepreneurs are creative, fluid people. We’re always on to the next thing and thinking up the next great idea before we’ve even finished the last. But that energy needs to be reined in and harnessed, so that:
– We’re able to accomplish everything, instead of accomplishing half of everything.
– So we’re not stuck working 80 hours a week because we fell down a hundred rabbit holes every day.
– We’re focusing our time and energy on the things that make us money, make us happy and achieve our goals.
It took me years to finally hone my productivity skills in such a way that I could get the most important things done each day, get them done in the shortest time possible and get rid of the stress caused by my day ending before my to-do list did.
I’m going to tell you the four things that help me stay at the peak of productivity each day. These tips helped me almost 15 years ago when I was starting a fitness boot camp for the first time. They still help me today, now that I’m running several successful companies.
Anybody can do them. You don’t have to be an organization freak to apply these to your own life. These are deceptively simple steps that will help you get things done so you have the time you need to develop your plans, get more clients and grow your business.
1. Always work from a list
When you’re just starting a fitness boot camp, you’ll have a hundred things going on at once and a million details that need attending to. Waking up every morning with a long mental list or a jumbled up general idea of what you need to get done is just inefficient.
Each night, spend a few minutes thinking about what needs to happen the next day and then write down four, five or six of the most important or urgent tasks. This accomplishes three things: you get to go to sleep with a clear head, you wake up with a plan instead of a vague idea and you know that whatever you’re doing on that list is important.
2. Always make the worst thing on your list the first thing on your list.
Have you ever heard the expression that says something about how if you eat a frog first thing, the rest of your day seems great? It’s a sarcastic way of explaining a principle that I’ve found very true. If you tackle the hardest or most unpleasant thing first, the rest of your to-do list starts looking really good.
Our tendency is to put off the thing we least want to do. But then we do a hundred other things to avoid it and wake up the next day with that thing still hanging over our heads. When you get it out of the way first thing, the weight is lifted off of your shoulders and you can fly right though the rest of your tasks.
3. Group your tasks
Always try to group tasks by place or type. Make all your phone calls in one block. Do all of your errands at once. Breaking things up too much is incredibly inefficient and tends to take much longer.
4. Do your most important work during your most focused time.
Craig Ballantyne calls it his “magic time.” We all have a certain period of the day when we are focused, clear-headed and most creative. For me it’s in the morning, so I tackle my to-do list from 7am to 10am. Then I have the rest of the day to do less important things or to do the things I want to do.
Whether your time is the late afternoon or before sunrise, set it aside as the time when you handle your most important tasks. Get rid of any distractions and make it clear to the people around you that this time is already accounted for.
Being truly productive doesn’t come naturally to everybody, but it only takes three weeks to make something a habit. Develop them now and you’ll be starting a fitness boot camp off on the right foot.