In a previous article we explained how planning helps improve performance — now we’ll discuss creating a planning framework which would provide you the best, most sustainable processes for good outcomes.
How do you improve your skills?
It depends on what kind of learning works best with you. There are people who learn best in a structured environment, and those who prefer real-live demonstrations instead of watching a video-course (and vice-versa.) There are people who do better studying on their own, and those who work better in a group learning session. It takes all kinds, but the key is being focused and consistent.
Systematic learning has a specific goal in mind: getting certification, being measurably better at a particular skill, updating your knowledge, learning more about a topic that will help add to your value, etc. Learning can also be recreational– for fun instead of work. When you hit that sweet spot, it can feel like both: you enjoy increasing your valuable knowledge.
Now, what do kids do to learn? They explore everything . Curiosity and energy combine to make them the perfect question-asking machines. As we get older though, we learn how to channel ourselves and our energies and interests at school. Oddly enough, the problem start once we leave school behind. For many people there’s an unspoken belief that once you graduate, you have all you need to know.
Leaning how to plan can be scoffed at as being so basic even a kid can do it, but now, more than ever, the stress and overwhelm people experience just proves that that isn’t so, because if it was we’d be doing our work with a lot less anxiety and stress. Continue reading How To Plan Sustainable Progress Successfully
What does “priming the pump” mean to you?
A quick search would show that the idiom describes the act of putting in a little energy of your own to get the action started. You get the ball rolling, starting the momentum, by making the initial moves and investing some of your labor, by making a sincere effort to jump-start something into working, and do it well.
In an entrepreneur’s life, priming the pump makes for good habits in the following ways: Going back to water, a suction pump– those old-fashioned types with the handle you had to pump out and down — required that you pour water down the pump to get the air out, restore the pressure, and form the vacuum necessary to start pulling up the water when you pump the handle.
In your case, it means doing a little something before-hand to make it easy to start something bigger: whether it’s starting on a project, continuing with something you left off yesterday, or starting the work-day properly.
Priming the pump can mean many different kinds of actions, but basically boil down to you preparing the stage to take the next step in your work:
- You clean up after you’re finished so you can start with a clean, neat work space the next day.
- You take good, orderly notes and organize your actionables into logical batches so you’re not all over the place attending to them.
- You devote a block of time solely for making cold calls, or research, or deep thinking about where you want to bring your business.
- You ensure that you are not bothered by distraction, and so on.
How can this help you:
Priming the pump aims to serve a particular purpose. In the field of economics, the phrase “priming the pump” means to provide stimulus for the economy to function properly. And when we use it right, it works the same for us. We do things to push our chosen activities work properly. We become more productive at the things that matter to us, and get more value out of the work that we do. Continue reading Getting ‘Pumped’: Productivity for Entrepreneurs