Overcoming The Obstacle of Excuses in Business
by Justin Lewis
I started my first business, Niche Optimizer, almost 12 years ago now. Since then I’ve accomplished many different goals that I set for myself. The most challenging of those goals was getting past excuses.
I’ll lay it out like this, many times as business owners we think that we are stretched thin and it’s impossible to do certain tasks. However, many of us have learned that we can delegate some of our work out to employees to give ourselves more time to do other tasks. Even so, we still feel we’ve got too much on our plate and can’t handle more. Most of the time, this just isn’t the truth. We can either delegate more out to employees/contractors or we can just set aside a little time here and there.
It Only Takes 5 Minutes at a Time
For example, when I talk to business owners about taking pictures on the job to post to Instagram or Facebook most will say they don’t have the time. Instead they should be looking at the big picture. If they have employee or contractors they can delegate it out to them. It doesn’t mean that persons entire job is taking pictures, it means to have them set aside 5 minutes each day to take maybe 3 pictures. As time progresses they’ll start to build up a portfolio which can encourage new clients to work with them and previous clients to continue working with them, all while also encouraging the companies team.
Now, I get it… it’s very difficult to get past these mental blocks related to small tasks. But once you do, you’ll start progressing much more smoothly.
Here are a few more examples of 5 minute tasks that business owners can either do themselves or delegate, but for some reason give excuses in taking action on:
- Recording videos of projects
- Taking pictures of their team
- Posting to social media
- Writing a blog post on their website
- Organizing their backend and reviewing what works and alternatives
- Building backlinks to their website (listing their website in directories for example)
- Reviewing their website to ensure it’s accurate
- Writing up a detailed bio about what the company represents and why it does what it does
- Recording videos saying thank you to individual customers
- Writing handwritten letters to customers AND leads randomly, with a system OR during holidays
- Thinking 10 years out
The list goes on and on. You, as a business owner, may even have issues with some, or even all, of these simple tasks.
My suggestion to you is to try 1 of the following 2 very straightforward methods.
1. 5 Minute Challenge
Set a timer for 5 minutes, focus on one task and see what you can get done. Repeat a few hours later or even the next day.
Yep, that’s it, you don’t even need to invest a lot of time overall. You just need to be investing time in general, even 5 minutes.
Bonus tip, have your employees do the same thing.
2. Stack Habits
This is my most impactful method, in short there are tons of little habits you do throughout the day. Some of them never change, for example you always have to go to the bathroom, eat food, drink water, wake up, sleep, etc.
Now think of things you can stack onto those general habits. Whether it be planning for the future prior to eating, writing a short blog post after you wake up, or writing a short handwritten letter before you go to sleep.
Each of these tasks may at first take some time, but with small 5 minute steps here and there you’ll improve over time.
Think about it. You can do nothing and be in the same place a year from now. Or you could spend 5 minutes here and there throughout a year and be more than 5 minutes x 365 days ahead. Those 5 minutes in a year add up to over 30 hours without you even breaking a sweat.
I hope this was helpful to you as a business owner, because it changed my life in various ways.
If you read this and end up trying out one of these 2 methods let me know how it goes!