How Post It Notes can give you focus

I'm a big believer that the one thing that stops people starting a business is not money, or time, or even an idea. It's overwhelm. You have so much going on in your head that it seems too overwhelming to even start.

Well, I have a clever little trick which I used regularly to get myself organised in my head which then makes me more organised elsewhere. 

This technique is bit like giving your brain a relaxing massage and has allowed me to focus on the things I need to do rather than worrying about where do I begin?

It's not a complicated, and the magic ingredients are -  a pack of post it notes and a pen (preferably a thin tipped black marker as it's easy and fast to write with and it won't suddenly run out of ink on you when you’re in mid flow).

Yup that’s it! That’s all you need – oh and some time set apart to focus on this task.

Different people do things in different ways so I can only tell you what works for me.

I start by dividing all the things that are filling up my brain into personal or business.  I think about each project or problem that I need to deal with.

I create one pile that is personal (which is just as important in terms of freeing up that brain overload) and one that is business. 

I tend to deal with the personal ones first as they often seem simpler but are often just pushed to the back of the queue.  There are lots of things like paying the rent or mortgage, how do I get the kids to school or keep on top of the home whether that’s cleaning or cooking.

Just start and go fast. Don’t think too much - take your post it notes and start writing what comes into your head and don’t analyse it all too much.

Then deal with business issues that you know have been sitting taking up room in your brain. That logo you need to get designed, the spreadsheet you need to create, processes you need to write.  Get them all down on a post it note in front of you.

The next stage is to work out which of these things can be grouped together for example for business it could be broken down into marketing, admin, website. 

Then once they are grouped together it’s time to assess which of these jobs can be outsourced. Do you need to do them all yourself? There’s a good chance that you don’t.

So once you’ve broken them down into business and personal categories and then broken them into things you need to do and things you can outsource.

I then like to move these tasks into a to do app of some sort – my personal favourite is Evernote.

I think it's brilliant because you can create lots of notebooks (so create a notebook for marketing, housework etc) with individual notes and you have a basically a note for every single point.

So that’s how post it notes can really give your brain a great clear out and get you laser focus.