What Happened When I Got Off The White Powder (and other productivity lessons)

August 17, 2016

flour and ingredients on black table. Top viewI get asked this a lot, so I thought that this week I’d share a few notes on how I am so productive in my business.

I hope that these help you get more done and have more fun as you make your difference in the world.

Personal Shopper

I know it sounds indulgent, but having Lee Heyward in charge of my style and my shopping makes me so much more productive. I always have something amazing to wear. I am more confident and comfortable and I am never distracted by my clothes so when I’m teaching or coaching I can be totally present for my authors.

Invest in Decluttering

When there is crap laying around on all the horizontal surfaces in my house, there is a little voice in the back of my head when I’m working reminding me to go clean up. I’m present with my work but not 100%. Part of me is thinking about all the other stuff I need to do around the house instead of fully serving. Task Rabbit is a God-send. It costs me less than $100 a week to have a Decluttering Goddess (named Dee) come over and declutter. The Author Castle is pristine and I am focused on serving. It’s a gift I give to my clients.

Self-care first even when it hurts

I used to put off doctors appointments because my clients needed me. Or at least that was the story. Then I had this delightful tooth infection that turned into 4 root canals on the same tooth and eventually an extraction on the DAY OF AN EVENT. I served my clients for 3 full days while on Vicodin and in excruciating pain. Luckily Maggie, Caroline, Margaret and Nancy got their books done anyway and I gave them everything I had but I was NOT at my best. What it taught me was preventative medicine was a gift for my clients – that is how I serve. So when I had a shoulder issue this year I went straight to physical therapy – and I have been doing everything my PT tells me for my authors. I don’t want rotator cuff surgery taking me out of the game or having me serve below my best so I prioritize self-care so I can show up 100%.

No multi-tasking with clients

Back in March I made a commitment to do one thing at a time with my clients. I switched to Zoom for conference calls and I unplug my internet if I’m on a call with an author. When I’m with clients I never do anything else. Your presence is your present.

Schedule what you value

Last year in Hawaii 2 books we worked on had a theme about scheduling what you value. I immediately booked date nights each week with my husband and son. Quality one-on-one time. Being honest I have not kept all of those appointments. In fact, I only keep 25% of them. But the weeks when I do it, I am happier and so is everyone else in the house. This year I’m so committed to this promise I’ve reengineered my business calendar around these one-on-one dates with the guys I love. Thanks to Jim and Brian from Family Board Meetings, I’ve extended these dates from a couple hours each week to adding a full, no-technology day each quarter. Disconnect to reconnect – Thanks for that one guys!

Get the right people on the bus

This week I realized something awesome. There is no stress in my business right now. All the bills are paid. Everyone gets a great wage. No one is stretched too thin for more than a couple days a month. I trust everyone on the team to do a better job at their job then I possibly could and everyone has stewardship for their own area and they only come to me with problems they can’t solve. I am leading without micromanaging. And let me tell you this was not an easy journey for me. The key – UNBRIDLED TRANSPARENCY. I shared every weakness and vulnerability with my team, I asked for their help and sure enough the solutions came from the team and not my brain.

Drop the white powder

God Damn it I can not believe I am one of these people now, but cutting sugar and flour out of my diet led to weight loss – about 35lbs this year – but that’s not why I recommend it. What I thought was high functioning for me was really clouded in a weird brain fog. When I dropped sugar which was nearly 3 months of TORTURE to do, I realized I was smarter, sharper, and so much more sensitive to my internal guidance systems without it. I make better decisions faster without white powders in my system. I didn’t give up flour and sugar for me – or to be in a size 8 – I gave it up to be the leader I want to be. Brooke Castillo asked me this question that changed the game: “What do you want the reason you gave up sugar and flour to be?” My immediate answer was “Because it’s the best thing I can do for my business and my movement.” Once I made that decision, everything was clear. The person leading this movement doesn’t need to be periodically anesthetized by a quick hit of hormones.

These upgrades took me a year to implement. Serious study and dedication but I am in my ZONE OF GENIUS 80% of the time. Earlier this year I was in my zone of genius less than 20% of the time.

What productivity lessons have worked out best for you?

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