They say if something’s for free, then you are the product. I would also argue that if something is not free, then the person making it is the product. Not that you have any semblance of an infinitely complicated piece of software, pottered cup, or elegant office stapler, but when you’re doing good, it shines through in everything you do. With bills, stress, and looming deadlines though, how can one develop anything short of a Polaroid picture with the time that’s leftover?
Make a schedule and (mostly) stick to it. This might sound silly to someone who’s not used to it, but it really is the best way to keep your life in order. And I’m not just talking about a schedule at work, but at home as well. It should start when you wake up and end when you go to bed. It seems dorky scheduling something like TV time, but without some kind of structure to keep yourself honest, it’s too easy to wake up, skip breakfast, work 8 hours, go home, eat supper, watch TV, go to bed. Repeat for infinity. With a schedule in place, it helps you to do things that are easy to brush off, such as read a technical manual (30 mins), get updated on industry news (15 mins), do some light exercise (10 mins).
It doesn’t have to be in large chunks, but when things are set out, it’s amazing how much can be accomplished. Conversely, without a schedule, it’s equally amazing how easily an extra hour can get blow away by watching ‘just one more episode’. Also, just because you have a schedule in place, try to stick to it, but don’t beat yourself up or stress out if the time slots are not met. It should be a guide; not a punishment.
Focus On the Most Important Product: You
With life in order, it’s important to grow yourself. The more you learn, the more tools you will get to put into the products of your labor. Inspiration can come from many unexpected places. The video game character Pac Man was inspired by a developer eating a pizza with two pieces missing. The movie franchise Pirates of the Caribbean was inspired by the theme park ride of the same name. So try new things. Things you like. Things outside your comfort zone. You never know what might inspire the next great breakthrough, so take it all in.
Also important is to make time for yourself. Especially if you’re in a family situation, one tends to ‘live for the family’. This is better than living by yourself in a family, but you too need a piece of time where you can do what you want. Maybe spend a half-hour rediscovering your love of painting, or find a quiet place to be alone with yourself for a while. Everyone needs their own time, and encourage your family members to do the same. By rekindling the things we like to do alone, it can foster self-joy and internal revelations.
Remember that you and your products. The quality of you will shine through in your products. So even an incremental change in your own behavior or knowledge can pay dividends. By balancing your life, the development will be more focused. By improving your knowledge, the methodology behind the product’s development will improve. By increasing your experiences, the inspiration for the next big thing of next breakthrough may be right around the corner. You are your business. Improve yourself, and your business shall too be improved.
Of course, to have time for yourself, you need to find time for yourself, and one of the easiest ways to find time is to make your payroll more efficient by using Canada’s only fully automatic payroll processing software with PayrollConnected.com. When payroll processing takes only seconds, it will save you hours over a month; time that you can use to improve yourself, and improve the fruits of your labor.