As an entrepreneur, author, college professor, mom, wife, part-time photographer, friend, and daughter, I’ve usually got 3,857 different projects going on at the same time. Such a level of busy-ness is hardly productive. Most days I keep track of what I need to do with a calendar, email, text messages, and my clock on my phone. I do something, though, that has really helped me to punch through the wide variety of stuff that lands on my (virtual) desk.
I call it 10-minute moments, or sometimes I refer to the process as “bursts”. Essentially, I tackle an item on my to-do list for at least 10 minutes – no interruptions, no phone, no social media. Of course, most things take more than 10 minutes, but I have found that 10 minutes without interruption means that I can accomplish a ton of stuff.
I found that if I stop thinking about things as a monumental task and instead think of them as things that I can plug away at for 10 minutes at a time, I am much more likely to dive in. Once I adopted the 10-minute principle, I started thinking of tasks as something I could do quickly, or at least more quickly when broken down into 10-minute increments. Here are some things that I do in my 10-minute blocks:
Work on product/service/content –
I can’t create a new product or service in 10 minutes, but I can get started on doing so or continue working on it. When I tell myself that I only have 10 minutes creates urgency without the expectation of having to finish an entire product or ebook or whatever.
Send out one marketing email –
I learned of this idea from Joanna Penn, who is a fiction and nonfiction author. The idea is to take some time to promote myself in some way. This will vary based on your niche, but perhaps it involves reaching out to a podcaster about coming on a show. Maybe it involves sending emails out to your customer list about a discount you are offering. Perhaps it involves emailing a conference organizer and submitting a presentation you would like to share.
Sharing content on social media –
Overwhelmed by what to do on social media? Who isn’t? The only way I’ve found to tame that beast is to allocate it a certain amount of time each day; 10 minutes is good to start. Operating on just a few platforms that are native to your niche, you could share interesting posts, content from your website or blog, and retweet people on a list that you have created in Twitter. For more information on social media management, check out my two books on the topic, Social Media Mastery and Social Networking Success. Social media can be a total time killer. Set a timer and jump in. Leave when the time is up and turn off automatic notifications that pop up on your screen.
These are just a sampling of what we can do with 10 minutes a day. Exercise, meditation, reading uplifting or motivating books, and reaching out to another person are other examples.
Just think: it’s only 10 minutes. You can do anything for 10 minutes, right?
Share your 10 minute moments in the comments below!
PS – My favorite thing for getting the most out of my time is to use apps like Evernote. Check out my free How-To Use Evernote videos to get you started!