In my 1-on-1 coaching sessions, I often hear artists saying, “I’m so overwhelmed trying to do everything that I end up not doing anything well.” I hear you! The unending list of tasks on the to-do list and the massive amount of information we consume on a daily basis about how to get better, do more, and learn new skills to help our careers is overwhelming. You may even be overwhelmed by the amount of free information I send you! But the most important thing is to make sure you’re focusing on quality, not just quantity.
Here are a few of my best tips to make sure you’re optimizing the time you have. And not only am I sharing them with you – but I do them myself.
You’re never going to get it all done – ever. Matter of fact, don’t even try. In order to optimize, the solution is to prioritize. That’s how successful people do it. They don’t worry about the stuff at the bottom of the list, they concentrate on the top. Prioritize your list with the stuff that brings in the most return first (unless money is not the goal), then the stuff you are most passionate about. This means that you have to constantly prioritize the order of importance in your weekly and daily tasks to be successful. I sit down every Sunday (The Sunday Summit) and prioritize the week ahead. This way I am the most productive with my time.
2. Set a Goal.
What are the absolutely necessary parts of your music career right now? Is your voice warm-up the most important thing you need to do? Or are you about to release an album and need to focus on your marketing? Do you have some lull time and want to focus on building your list? Decide what your focus is this month or quarter – set a goal for your efforts – and stick to it. What are the various tasks related to reaching that goal? Now schedule time into your calendar for them.
3. Get Help.
If you’ve broken down what you need to accomplish to reach your goal and you’ve found that some things on your list you can’t do alone, then outsource them! Find an expert or a friend who you can either pay or trade something for to get it done. Bartering is how smart musicians on a budget get what they need. Have faith that the universe is going to come through for you. Make it known what you’re looking for and offer to be helpful in any way you can.
4. Know Your Weaknesses.
If you’re distracted in your music career, it might be showing up in other places too! Figure out what you’re wasting time on and eliminate it! This is optimizing time at its most basic. Set a social media timer. Reward yourself with one TV show you love rather than marathoning it. Say no to going out to that thing you don’t really want to do but your friends want you to go to (well, once we’re back in person). Remember: this isn’t about deprivation. You NEED to do things that make you feel good and like you’re indulging. If that’s a weekly fancy meal out or reading your favorite novel in the bath or Pinteresting your dream life on Thursday nights – do it! Just don’t waste time on the things you do that don’t actually make your life better. They just make you feel guilty!
5. Track Your Results.
Part of why we flit back and forth between things is because we get scared that we aren’t seeing progress. The thing is, progress actually takes time to show up! Create a system for yourself and track your progress. Write down what you accomplished each day and any favorable increase you’re seeing. Plus 5 Facebook Fans? Awesome! Reached that high note in your song without straining? Bravo! The act of writing down your results makes it tangible, proves that your efforts are worth it, and pushes you to do more because you see that change + growth is possible!
6. Hire a Professional Coach.
Sometimes no matter how hard you try, you just can’t keep from splattering yourself all over the place. Then your best bet is to hire yourself a professional coach who can help you in optimizing your time, get organized, prioritize what’s most important, help you set goals and hold you accountable.
Want more great tips and solutions and some free guidance? Join my FREE 6 Week Online Artist Development Program: Step Up to the Spotlight. This program has helped over 13,400 artists amplify their impact and skyrocket their careers. I want you to be next.