Smash through the procrastination wall with focus

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Rustic Kitchen Island
Rustic Kitchen Island (Photo credits: West Elm)

The owner of a shoe factory in the KwaZulu Natal Midlands was forced to close down because of cheap imports. He has come to Johannesburg to start a restaurant in one of the suburbs. The restaurant is doing exceptionally well. Some nights he is fully booked and other nights tables flow out onto the pavement. At one stage he also won a contract to supply the kitchen requirements of a local sports club.

This small business owner is always in a rush. He has been working full out to establish his small business and never gets a moment’s rest. With the award of the contract to supply the kitchen of a local sports club he was running between his restaurant and the kitchen of the sports club. He had no time for himself as he is frantically established the other business.

As a small business owner or person starting a small venture from scratch, the task itself requires all your attention. It’s maybe even worse when you are starting something on the side that holds promise and may take off. Then you need to juggle the demands of a day job together with finding time to work on your start-up.

The problem nowadays is that it’s difficult to focus with the huge number of distractions that we have in modern life with the Internet, social media and other forms of entertainment. A study done some time back showed that if you get interrupted for one minute, it takes you up to 15 minutes to recover so that you can get back into your workflow.

Some small business owners get up early at 5 AM and do their hard thinking for their business early in the morning. During the day when the churn of work, demands from customers and employees fills up their time, it’s difficult to get tasks done that are important important for the growth and future of their business.

Yet others may try to bite the bullet and focus by starting a timer and not getting up until the task that they have set for themselves is done. This may work if you are a disciplined person and your working time is free from interruptions.

Big tasks can be chunked down into smaller tasks which seem less intimidating. At least, beginning any task gets your project moving. Once you begin, you get a momentum going that can sustain you until you complete the task at hand.

But what about those tasks that never seem to get done? Where do you find time during the day to tackle them? Sometimes all it takes is to a lot 10 minutes to a task, set a time when to do it and go ahead despite all the crises and emergencies that surround you. You’ll be amazed how just 10 minutes can make a huge difference.

Taking a business from the storming, norming and performing stages is not easy unless you become the master of your time. Yes, it’s easy for the guru celebrity entrepreneurs – they have full-time staffs dupporting them. But they also started out hustling for business whether in a telephone booth or in a small cupboard-like office. Learn to focus and you will feel less like a hamster on a wheel.

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