Hey, what’s up guys? Alex Branning here. I am going to share with you in this short podcast episode how I am able to get done in a single day what other marketing agency owners take an entire week to accomplish. Let’s go over some peak performance tips.
All right, so one of the biggest things that I hear from a lot of my coaching clients is that when I give them homework, they say things like, “I don’t know how I’m going to get this done. I don’t have enough time in the day. Can you help me figure out how I’m going to squeeze this in?”Things like that.
I want to start this episode off by sharing with you that peak performance, when you’re able to operate every single minute of the day that you’re working, at your most efficient, it is not willpower. It is not grit. It is not a mindset. It is a learned skill.This is not a switch that you can just turn on and off. This is a learned skill where you set up habits, mindsets, and strategies to make the most … to squeeze every ounce of productivity out of you that you have, for the entire time that you’re working.
One other note on this is, peak performance requires a start and a stop. In other words, if your mindset right now is, “I’m going to work from the time that I wake up to the time I go to bed,” then you are already setting yourself up for operating at an average or even mediocre level of effort throughout the day, because you are telling your mind that you have all the time today to get things done. I’m going to share with you over the next couple of minutes here why it is so important for you to have a start time to your day, and an end time.
So let’s just dive right into the strategies. Number one, when you wake up in the morning, the first thing that you need to do is say, “What am I doing today that’s going to move the needle in my business?What is that thing, that one thing that I have to get done today, that’s going to take my business to the next level?” That could be, “I’m going to make 25 prospecting touches today.” That could be, “I’m going to record a webinar today.” That could be, “I’m going to reach out to five of my power partners and just let them know that I’m thinking about them, or I’m letting them know, ‘Hey, I’m here to support you.'” What is that one thing that moves the needle?
Because here’s what happens. When you wake up, you get started on your day, the first thing that we tend to fall back on is getting grunt work tasks done. There’s nothing wrong with those things, but that is not going to move the needle. Then when you start to dive in to those tasks that are familiar to us, and you know, we feel good because we’re checking boxes, we’re marking messages read, we’re replying to emails, we’re getting on Facebook and doing our social media marketing … those things feel good, but they’re not doing anything for us, really. They’re not moving the needle. Those are just things that we have to get done anyways.
But when you write down, “This is the one thing that I need to do.” When you focus on that first, you’re going to get it done. You’re going to get that done, because you know you have the other things that your business requires waiting for you, once you get that thing done. So there is that pressure like, “All right, I got to finish this or else I’m not going to be able to get to the things that I have to do to just operate my business.” So, what is going to move the needle?
Second, schedule out your time.I talk to way too many entrepreneurs that … they don’t operate on a schedule, right? They are operating based on … when they wake up, they’re kind of going by, “Okay, I know I have to get a couple tasks done here,” or “I know that I need to call this person today at some point.” They have to-dos, which is great, but they don’t have a schedule. Here’s the problem with that. Again, when it comes to peak performance, you have to outline your day with a start time and a stop time so that you have clearly defined boundaries of when you will be getting things done.
So, it is absolutely vital for you to schedule out your time. Now, you don’t have to schedule it by the minute. I recently posted on Facebook and I asked my audience, I said, “On a scale of one to ten, ten being, ‘I schedule myself to the minute,’ one being, ‘I barely know what day it is,’ how tightly do you follow a schedule?” Most of my audience pegged themselves at a one or two, which is just crazy, right? A couple of them said five or six, and a small handful said ten.
I would consider myself a seven, and here’s why. I don’t schedule myself to the minute, but I do have very clearly defined time blocks where I have given myself permission to perform these tasks and only these tasks at a specific time. My best time, when I’m in my zone of genius, is between 8:00 and 11:00 AM. And so I don’t even schedule any appointments in the morning until 10:00, and sometimes I even block that off because I know that I have to get some stuff done. So for me, the morning time, that’s when I’m at my best. I schedule that out, I block it out, I say, “This is when I’m moving the needle in my business, from 8:00 to 10:00.”
And then, I have appointments from 10:00 to 12:00. I have a break, and then from 1:00 to 4:00 I am crushing it with my sales presentations, my coaching appointments. If I have any other calls that day, I’m handling that. That’s the time. And then from 4:00 to 5:00, that’s my wrap up. I’m getting my team ready for the next day, I’m answering questions, responding to emails, et cetera.
So I have a clearly defined schedule that not only puts the move the needle tasks in front, but also schedules time for everything else that I have to get done.It is rare that I have something on my to-do list for a specific day that does not get done that day. Rare. And I’m not saying that to boast. I’m saying that I am setting myself up for success.
Third tip, it’s all about your environment.Have you set yourself up so that peak performance and getting things done is the only option that you have? Too many people, me included, for years I set myself up so that it was almost impossible for me to operate at my peak efficiency. Let me give you some examples of things that you’re doing to cripple yourself and your efficiency, your productivity.
Number one, if you do not have something to write down ideas, thoughts, or reminders next to you as you work, what’s going to happen is you’re going to get things that pop into your mind, they’re going to distract you, and until they are out of your head and on paper or emailed to somebody, that will continue to kind of rattle around in your head and distract you. So you need to make sure that when those ideas pop into your head, you do them.
Number two, one of the main reasons why you’re not getting things done effectively and at the max productivity throughout the day is because you are taking way too much time to perform simple tasks. So what I started to do to get myself in the habit of just kind of rushing through that grunt work, is I started setting up a countdown timer so that I had a very clearly defined time limit for me to do things like respond to emails, or get my guys set up for what they have on the plate today.
You know, I set myself up, I’ve only got 10 minutes to give my executive assistant all the tasks for the day. That’s what I do. I set myself up a very strict time limit. You know what I’m doing during that 10 minutes? I’m just like crushing it. I’m running through the to-dos, I’m shooting quick videos with explanations. There is no wasted time there, right? And if you don’t have that sort of thing set up, where you have timelines and strict things, you’re going to fail. You’re setting yourself up for failure.
Let’s dive in to mindset stuff here, because this is really important. As you move into operating at your peak performance, you need to understand what is the why, right? And there’s going to be resistance. There is mental resistance that you have to operate at your peak performance because when you push yourself, it’s kind of like you’re at the gym, right?
You’re grabbing weights, and you’re hoisting them up, you know, you’re going for those gains. What happens? Your muscles get sore, they get tired, they start screaming at you and they’re like, “Stop! We’re done.” Right? They don’t want to go anymore. But you have to push through to get to where you want to go with your physical fitness, and now we’re talking about mental fitness and taking your mindset to the next level. You got to push through. There’s going to be resistance. That is expected.
Now, you need to go, “Okay, anybody can do anything for a short amount of time.” So if you’re working and you’re going, “Okay, I got from 8:00 to 10:00 to do my move the needle task,” and you start getting tired because the things that move the needle are usually the most excruciating, right, the most intensive. You’re like, “I just want to quit.” No. Anybody can do anything for a short amount of time. If you got to stand up and grab a drink of water, do it, but sit your butt back down and get the job done.
And I’m not saying that because I’m being a disciplinarian. I’m telling you that because you know you need to do those things to get to the level that you want to be at. You know you have to finish that task, and once it’s done, it’s done. Right? So just sit down and get it done. Anybody can do anything for a short amount of time. You only got two hours to get that task done, do it. You got to sit down and grind out prospecting touches, and get those rejections that inevitably happen when you make prospecting touches, and you don’t want to do it, just do it anyway. Sit down, get it done. Anybody can do anything for a short amount of time.
If you can, you should hire an assistant.And by the way, you can hire an assistant. If you say, “I can’t afford to hire an assistant,” that’s a limiting belief. You can hire someone for $5 or $10 an hour, depending on where they are working for you, and you can give them one hour of tasks to do per day. You can have them for five hours a week.
And then, once you realize that you have that person, they’re doing those things, they’re executing those tasks, the grunt work for you, and you have more time to operate in your zone of genius and actually do the revenue-producing activities, guess what? You’ll be able to hire them to do even more things. And you’ll be able to start delegating more and more tasks to your executive assistant, to your remote virtual assistant, to whatever the team member is that’s on your staff right now.
Once you start down the road of having an assistant, you’ll never go back because it’s going to be so much more efficient for you to just hand these tasks off. It’s going to be a whole new world. So you should be hiring an assistant so that you can operate at your peak performance by delegating the things that are outside of your tasks that only you can do.
The other thing, I want to give you a word picture for you, and I’ll close with this, and that is the VCR versus the DVR. So my business coach Eric Lofholm, who has really helped me learn a lot of these peak performance strategies, he shared a story that resonated with me. About 15 years ago, his family had a VCR and they were recording shows. They loved to watch shows together as a family, they really liked being able to sit down together when they were all done with their school and he was done with work, and watch shows together.
But when he had a VCR, didn’t happen very often. Right? He recorded anywhere from 10 to 15 shows an entire year. Why? Because he had to get the VCR, he had to get the blank tape, he had to set it up, and then he had to sit there to play it, make sure it worked right. It was just kind of a drag, right?
Then he got a DVR. He got the TiVo, and they started recording one or two shows a day. Why? They weren’t more motivated to record shows. He didn’t need a coach. He didn’t need additional motivation. It wasn’t the fact that he didn’t want to do it anymore when he had a VCR to a DVR. It was the structure. It was the system that he had in place that allowed him, that gave him the opportunity to immediately, massively change the number of shows that he was recording.
What does that look like in your business? What is the VCR that you are currently using because it’s comfortable and you know how to operate it, then you’re not willing to invest in the new system that you know will take you to the next level, but there’s fear there? What is your VCR? Think about that.
Hope this podcast just rocked your world, gave you a bunch of new ideas. Shoot me an email or a Facebook message letting me know that this resonated with you. Have a great rest of your day.
EASY SHARE TOOLS: