If you play sport, it makes a lot of sense to become as fit as you can in order to demonstrate your natural skill and abilities; you will perform better and enjoy it more.
If you sing or play a musical instrument, the more that you practice the better you will become at performing and the more you will enjoy it.
Business is exactly the same – the more organised you are, the better you will be able to perform; you will also enjoy yourself more and, very probably, be more successful.
Being able to focus and work on the activities that make the greatest contribution towards your goals will make you more effective, whatever you are trying to achieve. Being organised is an attitude of mind and deciding what you want to spend your time doing is a choice.
Deciding what you do with the 168 hours that you have been allocated each week represents a choice. Do you want to devote all your time to your job and achieve a great career progression, or do you want to work as little as possible in order to just to get by? This is an extreme choice though – being somewhere in the middle might be more appealing.
I have always decided to have a contract between myself and my work — how many hours do I want to give it?
Doing so might have prevented me from attaining certain promotions and might have held my career back, but at the same time, it gave the chance to attend every sports day and school play — in other words, it was my choice.
When I had fewer domestic responsibilities, I allocated more time and effort to my work and career —this was my choice. Even now, running my own business, I am the one who decides upon the time I am prepared to invest both in and outside of work, but I consider myself very organised so when I am work-focused, I concentrate on tasks that will help me to maximise my potential.
Being proactive in self-management also involves how we start to manage our thinking and get the best out of ourselves.
This involves building self-esteem and confidence levels. These are essential skills to Future Proof Yourself and to help with your general wellbeing.
Some of us have to work a lot harder than others in developing our confidence and self-esteem, but just as skills can be learned, so can professionalism. We just need to work on our self-esteem and confidence and practice them like any other skill in life.
Of course, a good dose of resilience and ‘bounce-back-ability’ never went amiss! Focusing upon which situations we can and cannot control helps us to stay focused on the tasks, situations and activities that will make us more effective and productive.
If you don’t do it for yourself, who is going to do it for you?
Extracts taken from Chapter Five: Proactive Self-Management – Future Proof Yourself by David Yeabsley.
You can find more details on this and other future proofing yourself ideas in my new book: Future Proof Yourself via: