We all get stuck from time to time.
And it happens in all kinds of ways for all kinds of reasons.
A bad case of writer’s block. A crash of confidence when a client says no. Too many ToDo’s on our ToDo list.
Sometimes you have no idea what to do to move your business forward.
Sometimes you have so many ideas you don’t know what to do first.
But being stuck means you’re not taking action, you’re not making progress, and you’re not creating the kind of success you want to create in your business.
So I’ve always said that there’s more than one way to get where you want to go.
When you run into an internal roadblock, sometimes you can bust through it. Other times, it’s better to just find a detour, get around it and move on.
Not sure how to do that? Here’s a few ideas to get you started.
ROADBLOCK #1: “ONE LIFE IS NOT ENOUGH.”
This is what I call the blessing – and curse – of having too many ideas. You’re an entrepreneur, so you can’t help yourself. You have so many ideas you can’t possibly get to them all in one lifetime.
But that doesn’t stop you from thinking about them, does it? And holding all those ideas in your head is a roadblock and an energy drain. The key is to get them OUT of your head and into a container, where you can capture them, keep them, and get to them when and if you’re ready.
Here’s what to do.
Create a place where you can capture every crazy, random idea that pops into your head. It could be a flip chart sheet on the wall of your office, a page in the back of your planner, a file in Evernote or a Word doc on your computer.
Label it as your “Idea Parking Lot” or your “Inspiration File”.
Every time inspiration strikes, just park it in your Idea Parking Lot, then let it go. When you’re ready for something new, go back to the file and pick up what you want. No more carrying around all those random ideas!
ROADBLOCK #2: “I NEED A WIFE!”
Every woman I know can relate to this one. :)
We all have too many To-Do’s on our list, no matter what our lives are like. And when you add business ownership on top of a packed life, you have a recipe for disaster.
The real key to managing this is to create systems and processes in your business that will clear the clutter and free you up to do what you do best. My clients tell me that this is one of the things they love the most about our work together (I love creating templates!).
My own coach, Christine Kane, says that wherever there is stress, there is a lack of standards or systems. Think about that for a moment.
Adding systems helps you find your way from chaos to clarity.
Here’s how to tame that massive To-Do list.
CAPTURE IT. Take a sheet of paper (it may need to be a BIG sheet of paper!) and make a list of every single thing you can think of that you (think you) need to do. List everything from buying a birthday card for your cousin to writing the content for the program you’re launching next month. Don’t censor, don’t organize and don’t judge.
CATEGORIZE IT. Now take all those things and sort them into categories (personal, business, finance, self care, household, relationships, etc.)
PRIORITIZE IT. Next, go through each category and arrange items in order of priority. What really DOES need to happen first? And what can wait?
CALENDARIZE IT. (Is that even a word?) Go to your calendar for the coming week. First, add in anything that has a definite time, like doctor appointments, coaching calls, or set meetings. Then, take your top three priorities for the week, and mark off the space and time when you’ll be working on those.
Bonus Tip: Take whatever time you’ve allotted for creative or thinking activities (like creating content) and double it. You’ll thank me later. :)
ROADBLOCK #3: “LOST in MANHATTAN…”
Sometimes we’re so overwhelmed we don’t even know where to start. Can you relate?
Instead of taking decisive action on our identified priorities, we just stand there, staring up at all the tall buildings, our mouths hanging open at all that’s towering over us.
In Twelve Step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous, it’s not at all uncommon for those who are newly sober to struggle with overwhelm. Sometimes, they’re fighting so many battles on so many fronts that they, too, don’t know what to do next.
When that happens, they’re taught to “just do the next right thing.”
You can use that same principle.
You don’t need to have it all figured out. You don’t need to know exactly where you’re going or exactly how to get there. You just need to know the Very Next Step.
Then Go. Do. That.
It could be really small – like looking up the phone number for a contact you need to call, or getting out your sketchpad and sharpening your pencils…
Or opening your bank statement and, yes, actually looking at it. :)
The smallest step will be movement, and that’s all you need. ANY forward motion is still forward motion.
So there. I hope that helps.
Those are a few of my favorites, and of course, there are plenty more.
Which one of these would help you the most right now?
Tell me in the comments below!
Photo Credit: dmytrok on Flickr