By Jon Gordon
My wife and I have an inside joke... I tell her about various authors in my field such as Wayne Dyer who go on writing retreats for a month or two at a time to write a new book.
I'll say jokingly, "If Wayne did it with a family maybe I could too." She responds just as I would expect. "You can go on a writing retreat but we may not be here when you get back."
The fact is there is no way I could go or would want to go on a writing retreat even if she was ok with it.
Besides writing my new book that comes out in January, my wife and I are raising children, 5 and 7, running three restaurants and there are seminars to give, newsletters to write, and many things to do. Like everyone these days, I'm busy but I have realized this is a good thing.
As a writer who writes and speaks about having energy in an energy-strapped, time-constrained world, I have lived and continue to live many of the challenges you face. As a result, I can share the lessons I have learned and the strategies I use to stay energized and create success in the midst of chaos.
St. Francis said, "It's no use walking anywhere to preach unless your preaching is your walking." So I'd like to share with you what I have learned during my walking with the hopes that it will help you create more success and get the things you want to do----DONE. Since people always ask me, "Jon, how do you do it all," and "How do you get it all done with all you have going on," I have had a lot of time to think about what I do and here is what I tell them:
Go to Bed early and Wake Up Early - To finish this upcoming book and to write my last book Energy Addict, I woke up every morning at 5:30am-6:00am to write. I realized that an hour a day over two or three months produces a lot of pages. It's all about doing the little things and you'll be amazed at how much you can accomplish early in the morning. It also feels great when you start your day with an accomplishment.
Know Your Priorities and Write them Down - My priority is not watching television at night. It is writing in the morning. Knowing this, I go to sleep early so I can wake up early. You have to know your priorities, write them down so you can see them and then take action that is in alignment with your priorities.
Focus - My wife tells me that I have intense focus. When I focus, my energy is like a laser. I know what I want. I know what I need to do and I do it. So just remember these 3 simple things. Know what you want. Know what you need to do. And do it. To help you "do it," write down a to-do list and check items off as you complete them. Also identify your distractions and eliminate them. If phone calls bother you while you are completing task at home or work, shut the phone off until you are done.
Create Mini-retreats - Not many people have time for month long retreats, instead we must plan mini-retreats into our day. You must carve out time for solitude and creating in the midst of chaos. You must schedule your priorities into your day. If you don't plan it, it is less likely to happen. If you are completing a project at work, working on a book, or school assignment, schedule time each day to work on this project.
Let Go of Negativity and Self Doubt - Unfortunately so many of us hold ourselves back from achieving or creating what we want. I know this well because I was the same way. Each morning I now take a walk and let go of the things that use to hold me back. You let go through your thoughts, your breath and your body.
While walking focus on your breathing... let go mentally and verbally of the things that hold you back. Say, "I let go of my stress, my fear and self doubt. I let go of my need for approval. I let go of my need perfection." By letting go you let go of the thoughts and emotions that hold you back and you are freer and more energized to take action.
Let Go of Attachments and Expectations - When you have an attachment to the result or expectation you create pressure and tense energy that prevents you from getting things done. You start to think about what it will be like instead of doing it. Remember, you don't have to be perfect. Just pour your energy into creating and let the outcome be the result of your positive and flowing energy. Have fun. When you have fun things get done.
Delegate - We can't do everything ourselves. The key is to delegate and enlist the support of others. For instance, my wife now pays the bills for the restaurants where I did it in the past. Determine what can be delegated. Train someone to do it right, then oversee them and make sure they are doing it right.
Sending Positive Energy Your Way,