Since getting back from our time away over August, I haven’t stopped. I wrote a blog post about being relaxed, refreshed and re-envisioned when I got back from the holiday, but boy does it seem like a distant memory! The good thing is that I delivered on what I said I’d would.
I have, however, learnt a valuable lesson over the last 3 months (I seriously can’t believe how quickly the time has gone) – a lesson not learned through success, but through burnout: if you fail to prepare, you prepare to fail.
I think a lot of people can identify with being so busy that you can’t fit it all in. However the temptation when you are like this is to try and solve your busyness by working very hard and clearing your plate. All this does, though, is tire you out, meaning you are less effective the following day, and less able to handle the work.
The actual key, is to solve busyness by taking time to prepare. If you make this time a priority, then you are able to work smarter because you have prepared. Sure, you don’t do as much to get rid of all the tasks that make you busy, but your preparation enables you to deal with the busyness more effectively that if you were worn out. It is like an investment of time that yields more time.
So, this month I have slowed down, enjoyed breakfasts like the one above, and as Stephen Covey would say, taken the time to sharpen the saw.
The actionable point: take time out every week to reflect and prepare, even if you can’t. Make it a greater priority than all the other deadlines – because it is this time out that enables you to meet the deadlines.