If you’re an online entrepreneur with a website, are you totally in control? Are you the jack-of-all-trades type or the face of your site while others manage all that techie stuff?
One of the tenets underlying the idea of business success is the need to be productive. Increased productivity implies controlling as many facets of a business as possible. While this is a good business concept, the actual degree of control may be more of an illusion than an actual productive strategy.
It’s human nature to believe we can create success by controlling as many elements as possible. At the same time, we overestimate our ability to get it all done. Any seasoned business person will tell you, there is only so much you can control. The more one attempts to micromanage, the more productivity declines.
When you try to control so many elements, your focus is scattered and taken away from what’s most important. It would then seem logical to direct the focus of control to what’s most important in your business. Or, should you?
Here’s the dilemma. Even if you focus on what’s most important in your business, it still doesn’t mean your sphere of control is enough to be productive and successful. Well, if it’s not enough then what is?
Let’s for a moment step back and figure out what you’re trying to control.
Normally, your focus of control is on the aspects of your business that will make it successful and how it measures up against niche competitors. According to John Brubaker, author and performance consultant, the error is in being competitive with your perceived competitors rather than yourself. Now, that sounds counterintuitive!
Brubaker explains it this way. Top level competitive golfers knowing that despite their skills there are many things they can’t control in a tournament. The edge for elite golfers is to focus on competing against themselves rather than on other competitive players.
In other words, you are attempting to control aspects of our business by focusing on what you think is important in order to compete in your niche market.
What you should be focusing on first is what you can control about yourself that will make you more productive and successful.
The Top 8 Areas You Have Productive Control Over
These are the top 8 areas you have control over that will have the greatest impact on your productivity and success.
- Attitude. What are your thoughts in response to problems and challenges? Where is the focus of your thinking? Is it on possibilities or is it stuck in uncertainty and the fear of not being able to control everything. Founder of Tiny Buddha, Lori Deschene, suggests that even a minor change in thinking can move you out of a fixation of control and into what she calls a “major change in reality.”
- Emotions. No matter how logical and fact-based you want to be, feelings will come into play. Different circumstances trigger different emotional responses. Your brain is naturally going to emotions related to your personal beliefs, preferences, and biases first. While some emotions can be motivating, most are ones of frustration, stress and overwhelm that interfere with your productivity. Consequently, you have control over how you want to respond in terms of what’s best for keeping you productive.
- Decisions and Actions. How you decide and what you finally decide, along with motivation and commitment, shape your actions. It’s your final actions which in turn control what leads you to your goals and desired results.
- Reactions. Success is not a stress-free, problem-free nor obstacle free. It’s your choice how you control your reactions to these conditions and in-the-end how you will proceed in the best interests of your business.
- Time. You’re the master of your time. Philip E. Humbert PhD, succinctly puts it in perspective “The new year will last twelve months. You will have 52 weeks in which to choose your priorities. You will have 365 days to decide where to focus your time, your attention and your efforts. You will have thousands of opportunities to choose, to try, and to learn. Twelve months is a huge amount of time! In twelve months you can achieve miracles.”
- Energy. In the same way, you’re the master of your energy. Greater productivity will ultimately depend on how well you fuel your body from healthy resources, the quality and amount of your sleep, tuning up your body through excise, how much downtime you give yourself away from the electronic world, and how much time you allocate to reconnecting to the natural world. And finally, how you control and channel that energy into a committed effort of creating a successful business.
- Environment. This is your productive space. You control its appearance, who and what has access to your attention and the atmosphere which is most conducive to the execution of your success plan.
- Learning. Your world is changing at a faster rate than ever before and on-going learning is critical if you want to maintain control. It requires focusing on new aspects of your business and its technology, as well as, being able to integrate new marketing trends and changing consumer behavior.
Ultimately, your productivity and success are all about how you exert the control you do have and how you use it to show up in your business.
Question: how are you showing up in your business?
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