It’s the end of your business day. That’s enough work for one day, and you’re turning off the lights in your office or your shop. You’re going home. Do you feel fulfilled? Do you feel as though you accomplished everything you wanted to do today? Or are you really not sure if you accomplished anything?

A lot of times, as a small business owner, you might find yourself taking the shotgun approach to your day.

With the shotgun approach, you’re putting holes all over the walls, you’re here and there all at the same time, you’ve always got three or four things going on at once. Maybe you feel a little disorganized, and overwhelmed by the time you get to the end of your day.

It’s time to start being more focused, more efficient, more effective in your business.

So, how do you do that?

Well, are you picking up the phone every time it rings? Are you jumping every time the email dings in your inbox? That’s not focused energy or effort. That’s not honing in on what needs to get done.

Instead of doing those things that are hurting your productivity and your business, and stressing you out, try giving yourself some time. Set yourself up with the one thing, the one specific task that needs to get done. Block your time. Spend 15 minutes here doing this thing, or 20 minutes there doing that thing, or 90 minutes doing one thing. And do just that one thing.

Help yourself focus your energy on just one thing by setting a timer. Whatever it is, decide how long you’re going to do it for, set the timer, and do it. When the timer goes off, that’s it, you’re done. Even if you’re not completely finished.

If you need to write an article and it takes you thirty minutes to write an article, set your timer for thirty minutes, sit down and write the article. Don’t get up to get a drink, or to go to the bathroom. Don’t stop to answer the phone, or reply to an email. Just write that article.

As you do this more frequently, start decreasing the time you give yourself. Instead of giving yourself thirty minutes, give yourself twenty minutes. What you’re essentially doing is training yourself to be more productive in your day, so at the end of the day, you know what you’ve accomplished, you feel less stressed, you feel more organized, and less overwhelmed.

You can easily work six or seven days a week. You can work 60, or 70, or 80 hours a week. That’s fine, if that’s what you want to do. Using the shotgun approach will certainly allow you to keep working like that.

Maybe you don’t want to work like that. Maybe you only want to work four days a week, or five days. Maybe you only want to work 40 or 50 hours a week. Start blocking your time. Start finishing the tasks you give yourself by blocking your hours and you’ll start seeing an increase in productivity, less time spent in the office, and at the end of the day wondering what you accomplished.

No matter what you do in a day, you’re never going to feel as if you accomplished enough when it’s your business. You’re not going to feel like everything got done. That’s OK. Using this approach will allow you to know that what needed to get done got done, and you’ll feel more satisfied because of it.

Author's Bio: 

Diane Conklin is an author, entrepreneur, coach, consultant, event planner, speaker and copywriter. Diane is a direct response marketing expert who specializes in showing small business owners how to integrate their online and offline marketing strategies, media and methods, to get maximum results from their marketing dollars. Diane also shows entrepreneurs and small business owners how to outperform their competition by measuring their marketing, and strategically use multi-media campaigns to stand alone in their marketplace as the go-to provider for their products and services.

She is the co-founder of Complete Marketing Systems and for more than 15 years has been showing small business owners how to start, build and grow Information Marketing businesses where they take knowledge they already possess and turn it into passive, ongoing, leveraged profits.

Through her company, Complete Marketing Systems, Diane helps event promoters market, plan and manage their live events, workshops and seminars, using cost effective, multi-step marketing strategies that put butts in seats, without the promoters losing theirs. As an Event Marketing & Planning expert, Diane has planned and produced multiple events grossing over $1,000,000.00.

As a business and marketing strategist, Diane has been involved in numerous campaigns grossing over $1,000,000.00 in sales several times in her career.

Diane has proprietary home study systems, coaching programs, and provides done-for-you services in the areas of Social Media, Information Marketing, Direct Response Marketing, Direct Mail and Event Marketing, Planning and Management.

As a speaker, Diane has shared the stage with the likes of Joan Rivers, George Foreman, Dan Kennedy, Bill Glazer, Lee Milteer, Harry Dent, Lee Phillips, Fabienne Fredrickson, James Malinchak, Dov Baron, Peggy McColl, Marshall Sylver, Alex Mandossian, Marie Forleo, Barbara Corcoran and many others.

Diane was voted Information Marketer of the Year for her innovative marketing strategies and campaigns.