NOVEMBER 2, 2017
Photo by SergeyNivens/iStock / Getty Images
If you’re like me, you find yourself jumping from one thought to the next, often interrupted and feeling generally unfocused. Whether you are running from one meeting to the next, are distracted by your inbox and social media, or trying to find pockets of time to work while managing your home and children, it can be difficult find clarity and creativity when you need it. You may even notice that when you do come across some uninterrupted time, you aren’t really sure how to actually think anymore. When trying to be strategic, to solve a problem or to create, you may find yourself stuck and even welcoming interruptions
Here are my top 6 tips for getting things flowing again:
1. Think in the Shower. Okay, so this may not be something you can do while at the office, but I can’t tell you how many ideas and epiphanies have come to me in the shower. Something about the flow and sound of water falling combined with uninterrupted time seems to unlock even the most difficult solutions. I’ve written entire speeches and blog posts in the midst of this simple daily activity. And when I’ve been confused about a decision, under the spray of water, I will suddenly just know what I want. Try it out and see if it works for you too.
2. Flip a Coin. If you are struggling between a couple of different options or trying to determine whether or not to do something, just flip a coin. Assign one option as heads and the other as tails. As the coin is in the air, you have to pick heads or tails – see which one your instinct latches onto.
3. Identify Your Golden Hours. What is the time of day when you are at your best, your most clear, alert, confident and energetic? Some people come alive at night and others do their best thinking before the sun comes up. For me, it’s 8am to 11am. These are my “golden hours”, as they say in the time management world. So, I try to schedule blocks of focused time to create during that time of day. I know that at 4pm, my lowest energy point in the day, I’m just not going to produce my best stuff. It may not always be possible to spend your golden hours focusing on what you’d like to, but being aware of it may help you be more strategic in your productivity.
4. Write To Your Intuition. This may sound a little bit woo woo. But I have found it to be really helpful when I need to figure out a next step or find an answer to something I’m confused about. Just take out a piece of paper or open a blank page on your computer and write a question you have. See what answers pop into your mind and write them down. The idea is that you are turning off all of the noise in your head and seeking out that gut instinct you have that gives you the “right” answer for you. This concept comes from Jess Lively and one of my favorite podcasts, The Lively Show. To hear more about this, check out this episode from a couple of years ago for some guidance and examples.
5. Take Action. When my clients feel overwhelmed or stuck, I often ask them to think about “What’s the next right thing to do?”. In my experience, action breeds more action. Even if it feels like the tiniest step. Breaking it down to one thing and doing it creates momentum and you will often find the next step after that suddenly becomes clear to you. Whether it’s going for a run, making one phone call, making a small purchase, setting up a meeting or even just making your bed. Do something. Anything. And then do the next right thing after that. See where it takes you.
6. Hire a Coach. I know, I know, this is a pretty self-serving tip. But having a coach is truly one of the best gifts you can give yourself. I’ve been working with my business coach for 1.5 years and she has helped me to figure so many things out and be really clear about what I want with my business (and my life!) and take bold action. Working with her has been worth every penny. Sometimes we just need someone else to help us open up that door to clarity or creativity or the things we didn’t realize we were dreaming about for ourselves. If you’re not quite sure how coaching works, check out my FAQs here.
So, there you have it. I hope this list finds you on your way to discovering the answers you are seeking and helps you to create, make, and think in whatever way you serve the world.