Productivity Apps to Help You Stay Focused on Growing Your Coaching Business
This is a guest post written by Will Yl. Want to contribute? Check out the 2016 publishing calendar.
In Tuesday's post, we looked at how to map out your time, remove unessential tasks from your day and maximize your productivity. This is not always the easiest tasks, so here are some productivity apps and life hacks to help you along the way.
Productivity apps and hacks
I want to give you the best productivity apps and techniques to turn this time sink-hole into your Miracle period.
You’ll notice this list is short and essentialist. That’s for a reason. There’s plenty of productivity app lists on the Internet. Usually, they have 50 to 100+ productivity apps, books, and devices on there that they use—I’ve looked at most of them.
Strict Workflow - Chrome Extension (free) — Press the button and it blocks all social media websites from being accessible. You can set the timer for as long or short as you want. Simple. You can also work in the Pomodoro technique with this tool if you want to. This technique basically gives you 5 minutes of break every 25 minutes of focused work you do. You can set the tool to unlock for 5 minutes every 25 minutes.
RescueTime - Chrome Extension (free) — This one’s optional. Once it’s installed and you register, it logs where you spend your time by category (entertainment, news, etc.) on the internet. Very useful to face the cold, hard facts about how much time you’re wasting. Below is a picture of my monthly stats:
These stats are shocking. 38 percent on entertainment. 12 percent on Social Media. That’s 50 percent of my computer time on wasteful activity. You can tweak websites if RescueTime is registering them wrong. For example, you can switch LinkedIn from social media to business since it’s mostly productive work you do on there. Also, youtube.com is logged as entertainment rather than social media, which I agree with.
Momentum - Chrome Extension (free) — This is the last extension I will suggest. This one is simple. If you open a new tab, it displays your #1 most important task to focus on in big letters. You are prompted to type this in each time you start a new day. This does two things: it prevents you from going off task with the recommended or frequently most visited sites it displays by default and it constantly realigns you to make sure you’re doing the most productive thing you can.
The pre-lightbulb era technique
Another great way to maximize your efficiency and have time to spend on growing your coaching business, is to try the "pre-lightbulb era technique." A great majority of human civilization lived without artificial light for many many years. You went to sleep when the sun went down. If you were lucky, you had fire or candles, but even those were likely reserved for important things.
What’s the point of bringing this up?
The only productivity technique I recommend to help you manage those few hours you have after work every day is to imagine you lived before there was electricity to make the most efficient use of that time.
Without electricity, you wouldn’t have lightbulbs, tablets, phones or computers. What would you do with that time instead?
Artificial light has made it so we can light up a room like it’s a city in the middle of the day. It’s wreaking havoc with our bodies. Our biology thinks it’s daytime when it’s not so it's no wonder we have trouble getting to sleep faster!
Limit your light intake moderately (you don’t have to go to the extreme of having zero lights though)
What would you do in that time that is most effective to you? What’s the #1 most important task for you to accomplish for that week, month, and year? How can you move close to it?
Once you have done this and asked those questions, things become clearer. You are allowed to partially go back on the pre-electricity technique. If you must use your computer to complete that #1 task, then you are allowed to.
The point of it is to dramatically limit computer time if it is clearly unnecessary because it comes to be more of a distraction than a help oftentimes.
For example, if the coach who has another day job used this technique, he might come up with the #1 task of getting more customers for his coaching business through sales and marketing efforts. Therefore, he would spend a good portion of those hours after work towards doing that and be able to eventually quit his day job and become a coach full-time.
Maybe he’ll try Facebook ads or other advertisement options. Maybe he’ll write blog posts for his website or make YouTube videos to get more SEO traffic. Maybe he will try cold-calling people or putting up signs on the street to advertise his service.
What you should also take from this is a constant understanding and movement towards long-term goals. By moving towards a method of making more money in less time, you give yourself more free time to work with, which allows you to get even more done if you’ve already maxed out how efficient you can be.
Will blogs about the top productivity and self-help tips based on science. You can sign up for his free email newsletter at willyoulaugh.com