This topic was prompted from a coaching client who said to me “I’m slacking off in my business” But he is so NOT a slacker.
It was something completely different, but he had no idea, and that’s where I’d like to focus today.
Let’s talk about how to tell if you’re really in fact slacking off, when taking a break is actually necessary, and if you have fallen off the track, how to get back on it.
WHAT YOU WILL DISCOVER
How to tell if you are slacking off in your business
The difference between slacking off and restoring our energy
When it is necessary to switch our priorities
5 ways to stop slacking off and getting back on track
FEATURED ON THE SHOW
Hello, hello and welcome to Happy Productive episode number 19. I’m Jennifer Dawn, a business coach and founder of the Best Planner Ever. The Happy Productive podcast is your go-to resource for learning how to bring awareness into your productivity, your goals and your time management practices, so you can set yourself up each day for as much love and happiness and joy as you can possibly handle.
So today we’re going to be tackling the topic of slacking off in your business. And this is a great topic, it actually was prompted from a coaching client who during our coaching session, he said to me, “Jennifer, I’m slacking off in my business” and here’s the thing this particular client is so not a slacker, okay, he’s not you’re not even close to a slacker. And so what was really happening with him was something completely different and that’s where I’d like to drill down and focus on today.
So let’s first talk about how to tell if you in fact are slacking off in your business. And so here are some signs to look for. If you find that you keep checking your phone, right, checking the phone, checking the phone, in between tasks, you might be slacking off a little bit. If you find yourself constantly browsing the internet or cruising social media. Maybe you’re actively instant messaging your friends or your colleagues via text or any kind of chat software. If you find that you’re spending more time documenting or planning your tasks than actually completing them.
Maybe you find yourself taking excessive lunch breaks or excessive vacation days. You’re getting into work late. You’re leaving early. If those kinds of things are happening. Yeah, it’s probably a sign that you are slacking off. If your co-workers or this could be your staff, it could be vendors, it might be clients, anybody that you’re working with, if they have to remind you to get things done, that’s also probably a sure sign.
So if any of these are happening, it could be an indicator that yeah, you probably are slacking off. And if you’re slacking off, it almost certainly is hurting your productivity. It’s hurting your goals and being able to achieve them. It might even be hurting your mindset as well. Because deep inside deep in your heart, you know that you can be doing much, much better. And in a little bit, we’re going to talk about ways to stop slacking off. If you find that you’re slacking and your business, you know that it needs to stop but you’re just not quite sure what to do. We’re going to tackle that in just a minute.
Now, let’s say let’s take the flip side of this. So let’s say that you show up in your business every day and you give it 100%, right? You’re giving it all you’ve got. If you actively prioritize your time you work from a prioritized list, you’re moving your projects forward. Let’s say that you’re on target, or at least you’re really close with your goals. You’re delegating really well, you have an effective team and they support you really well. You don’t have projects that are like slipping through the cracks. If all of those things are really the truth, but you show up in your business and let’s say that you’re tired, your energy is low.
Maybe your spirit is like, Hey, you know, I really need a rest, I need some time to relax and recharge, right? If we’re truly listening to that voice, that is not slacking off. It is not slacking off. There’s a difference there, okay between actually slacking off or telling ourselves that slacking off. So when you’re aware that hey, I’m just tired and I need a rest, that’s actually called being smart. It’s being aware it’s being connected to yourself. It’s about restoring your energy and getting the rest so that you can continue to show up 100% in your business. And so as business owners, it’s really important for us to know the difference between being smart rusting or storing our energy, or when hey, you know what, I’m really slacking off here. I’m wasting a lot of time and I need to get back to being busy.
Now in my own life, I seriously when I started my first software company, this was many, many years ago, I used to think that I had to go 100 miles a day, every single day to really have value in my business, to take my business where I wanted it to go. I had to just be running at 100 miles an hour and this was total BS. It wasn’t the truth at all and running 100 miles an hour all the time, really the only road you’re going to be going down is going to be exhaustion and burnout. And it’s not a good place. I’ve been there a few times I can be a little stubborn. Sometimes it takes a few times around the block for me to learn that lesson, but I’ve definitely learned it now. And truthfully, it’s just not realistic to think that you’re going to be able to go 100 miles an hour every single day in your business.
Now I see this with a lot of business owners that I coach, right. And so we think that if we can’t show up every day with that perfect energy, that perfect mindset, in that perfect emotional mind frame, right that we are something might be wrong with us. And so what do we do? We guilt ourselves, we shame ourselves. We beat ourselves up. It’s like, Oh, you know, I’m slacking off today. And this is exactly what was happening with my client. He wasn’t slacking off at all, it was just tired and he just needed a rest. And that’s all it is.
And so in that situation, what we should really be doing is simply just switching our priorities. And so now our A task becomes getting rested, getting recharged, and from there, we can delegate we can move some things off to give ourselves some space and some time to get rested so that we can feel good and we can get back get back out it sooner, right? And if you use my planner, Best Planner Ever, you know A tasks are really essential to planning our day. That A task is that task that you’re doing that’s really moving the needle on your business on your goals. Sometimes it’s that thing that we procrastinate it might put you out of your comfort zone, but that’s our A task.
And so think about that for a second. If an A task is something that we tend to procrastinate or puts us out of our comfort zone, but it will actually move the needle on our goals. When our batteries get low, often, it’s easy for us to like grind away. But that’s exactly what we don’t want to do. Instead, we want to rest. And for some of us, that might be something we procrastinate or like, oh, I’ll rest later, oh, I’ll rest later and we keep grinding away. Or it might put us in our “uncomfort zone” because we’re not used to taking a break.
And so that is a perfect thing for an A task, right? I’m tired. I’m used to grinding away and instead, I’m going to get recharged, do some self care take some time for myself, that now becomes the A task the most important task. Because if you want to move the needle on your goals, you’re going to need to bring really good energy to it. And you can’t do that when you’re in a state of overwhelm or exhaustion, okay?
Think about this for just a second. Let’s say that your car, you’re driving along and your car gets really low on gas, the indicator says, hey, you’re getting close to empty. You don’t turn around and guilt and shame your car, you just go to the gas station and you fill up the tank. There’s no difference here, you’re a task simply becomes I need to recharge, I need to fill up my tanks and it’s my most important activity. Otherwise, we’re going to really run out of gas right and be stuck on the side of the road, a place where nobody wants to be.
So once you’ve taken however much time you need to recharge, get your batteries, your gas tank filled back up, you’re going to intuitively know that, hey, it’s time to get back at it right? You’ll feel it in your body like hey, you know what? Okay, I’ve been slacking enough. I’ve rested enough. Okay, now it’s time for me to show up and get back at it.
Alright, so now if you’re on the flip side, the first flip side we talked about, right? And you’re the one who you’re already slacking, okay? You’re not the business owner who’s been pushing it hard and really just needs to rest and recharge. Then you’re slacking in your business, you really want to stop doing that. Here are some ways that you can do that.
So number 1, I’m going to share 5 ways that you can stop the slacking. So number 1 is to check in with yourself. And this is about really being honest, this podcast is about bringing awareness and we can’t really make any different choices if we’re choosing to be unaware. We’re choosing to ignore whatever is going on in our lives, or we’re choosing to distract ourselves. So we don’t have to deal with it, okay? But what I want you to do is instead check in with yourself, be really honest with yourself. In your heart, you know if you’re slacking or not.
And if you’re truly slacking. This is where it’s time to say, okay, you know what, I’ve been doing this but now I’m going to make a different choice and I’m going to choose to ramp up my productivity and to maybe stop some of those time waster activities, right. I’m going to get off the social media. I’m going to put down my phone. Maybe I’m going to turn off my phone. Oh my goodness, heaven forbid the earth. does still spin you guys, when we turn off our email or we turn off our phone so that we can get productive and start really focusing on those A tasks which are going to move us forward.
Alright, tip number 2, make sure that you’re setting your expectations at a reasonable level. Why? Because when you’re putting too much on your plate, you’re overwhelming yourself. And when you’re overwhelmed, and you don’t know what to do next, that’s like a perfect recipe right, for slacking off simply because you’re overwhelmed, not because you’re lazy. Just because there’s so much on your plate, you just don’t really know what to do next. So you might end up cruising social media or being on your phone or doing some of those time waster activities.
Alright, and this is all about being Happy Productive. And that means having effective work life balance, right. We want to pace ourselves, we want to have the exact right workload. So if you need to lower that bar. When you lower the bar, see how that helps with your overwhelm. And then hopefully when that’s at a reasonable level, you’re going to be able to boom, stop the slacking and get back to work.
Strategy number 3, delegate, right? Don’t try and do everything yourself. If you’re not good at delegating. That’s okay. Just practice it like anything else. We’ve got to practice delegating. Now, if you find that your team anytime you send them things, they mess it up, or they don’t really do it well. Well, now that’s a little different issue, because often what will stop us from delegating is not trusting the person that we delegate to, as to whether or not they can do the job. And if they can’t really do the job to our expectations, we won’t want to delegate, alright.
So if you find yourself not delegating, either practice, if you’re just not good at it, or you don’t like asking people for help, well, let’s start practicing that, and two take a look at your team and make sure that the people you’re surrounding yourself with can actually do the job better than you.
All right, number 4, hold yourself accountable. If you just find yourself slipping, because let’s face it, when we’re left to our own devices, it can be way too easy to just let things slide. And this is where you want to hire a coach or join a group. Because if you’re really, really serious, you want to build that accountability into your day into your week into your goals into your time management, if you’re serious, and if you’re not serious, then you won’t hire accountability or a coach or somebody to work with and you’ll just kind of stay where you are. And again, it’s your choice. But if you’re really serious about this, do something to hold yourself accountable. And that will also help with the slacking.
And number 5, a daily time management system here is really crucial. If you’re just going in a lot of different directions, you don’t really have an organized practice in place that you can use every single day, right, to prioritize to make sure you’re saying yes to the right things no to the wrong things. Or let’s say you bought that planner and it’s sitting on your desk and it’s gathering dust and you haven’t even cracked it open. Well, guess what, it’s not going to do you any good. So this is where it can be so worth your time and A task, right to invest in a really good time daily time management system that you can use tried and true every single day to make sure that you are as productive as possible in all areas of your life and not losing time to slacking.
Now if you’re like, hey, Jen, that all sounds great. I really need some help with this. And especially with the time management system, you may want to consider checking out my Best Planner Ever. It’s designed for that high achiever, who wants to meet their goals while having fun and experiencing true work life balance along the way. So if you’re somebody who really understands and appreciates self-care, you choose to make it part of your day every day. And you want to plan around the full being right, your mind, your body and your spirit if you want to plan with all of those things in mind that this this planner could be a great fit for you.
Everything that I talked about on this podcast is built into my planner to help you achieve your goals faster, but also help you achieve that work life balance. If you want to learn more, just visit bestplannerever.com. All right, you guys, thank you so much for listening today. Now go out there stop slacking off or get yourself rejuvenated. If you’re not slacking and you just need a little break. You just need a little gas in the tank. All right, whichever it is for you get out there and do it and have a Happy Productive day!