I love being productive. Nothing irks me more than seeing the sun go down without achieving my goals for the day; I love progress and I love productivity. And I’ll bet that you do too!
Sure, we’re not all equally as ambitious as others but we all love to see the needle move. We love to see the scale go down, the BPM get faster, the checking account balance increase, the tour schedule get booked… No one likes to see these things stay the same. In fact, staying the same is actually an illusion. There’s no such thing as standing still – there’s only moving forward (progression) or backwards (regression).
So if you want to make progress in whatever you’re doing you have to set goals, we all know this. I’ve always known this. But here’s something that I never really did that has now caused my productivity to increase exponentially.
Lately I’ve been attaching due dates to my personal goals, business goals and creative goals. I know it seems silly to have never done this before, but it’s true. I normally just set goals and then knock them out as I get to them. But assigning a due date to it takes goal setting to a whole new level; it means that I also have to plan out each step that I’ll need to take in order to get there, and by default I’ll need to assign due dates for each sub-step as well in order to meet my deadline on time, and so on.
Like I said, nothing new here. I had to do this in school as a child: The report is due on _, which means Draft 2 needs to be finished on _, Rough Draft on _, revised outline by _, rough outline by _, meaning I need to have a basic idea of where I want to go by _.
So why did I forget to apply this concept for so long? Perhaps it became second nature and I don’t need to think about it anymore. But lately I’ve been setting aside some time each day to not only set my goals but calculate my steps to get there, and I’m loving the results.
For instance, I want to lose 12 lbs, so at 2 lbs/week (pretty safe) I’ll need 6 weeks to get there. That means I need to weigh 162 by next Monday, 160 the following, and so on until I get to my desired 152 lbs by early march. So far so good!
I want to release another record this year, which means the demoing process needs to wrap up in time to track, edit, mix, master and transcribe… There’s a ton of work in making a record but I can chop it up into tiny little mini-goals with deadlines that’ll add up to a finished product in the end (that date is yet to be determined, but I’ll have it up soon!).
Again, nothing new here at all! I’ve been able to do this since I was in the 6th grade, and so have you. What goals do you want to accomplish? Is it practicing every day, getting your reading chops up, getting faster, learning a new technique, finally releasing your EP that you’ve been working on for too long, starting a blog or YouTube channel, or ????
Write it down, plan it out and give it a due date – I guarantee you’ll enjoy the results!