My goal is to redo my office, starting with painting the walls and then putting in a hardwood floor. For some reason, the previous owners decided to wallpaper the room with cream-colored wallpaper. It looks just like paint, but it is actually wallpaper. Since it has begun to fray in places, my desire is to remove the existing wallpaper and paint the walls. This is a fairly large task to accomplish.
I keep putting the task of removing the wallpaper off until I have a whole day to work on it. The other day, I had an epiphany. I have not been able to carve a whole day out of my schedule for the past four months to do this project. I realized it was not going to happen.
As I was speaking to a friend about my conundrum, I realized that I needed to change my mindset. Instead of waiting for a whole day to complete the project, I needed to just start devoting a half-hour or an hour a couple times a week to the task. If I do that, then I will accomplish removing the wallpaper in the time-frame I had in place for the project.
As an independently published author or small publisher, you, too, are extremely busy. You have many roles that require diverse tasks. Some of these roles include:
- Book Designer
- Production Manager
- Marketing Manager
- Social Media Manager
Each role has huge responsibilities that require your time and attention. Because you wear so many hats, I am sure that at times you end up neglecting some of your roles. An independently published author recently told me: “I haven’t done much about marketing my books. I have so much more fun writing the books, so that is where I put my time.”
I believe one of the reasons that this author is putting off the marketing piece is that the idea of doing it is overwhelming. It seems like a large task that requires a substantial amount of time just like my wallpaper project.
Paul J. Meyer, Founder of the Personal Development Industry, says, “Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.” I agree. Just like my realization that I needed to take small pieces of time to spend on my project to accomplish it, the same is true for your roles.
I encourage you to plan small chunks of time each day to devote to each of your roles. Break the tasks down into manageable bites. For example, decide you will spend 15 minutes in the morning and afternoon on managing your social media efforts. Then take another 15 minutes in the morning and afternoon to do one or two small marketing tasks like calling a producer of a radio show, sending an email to a blogger requesting to be a guest, or planning your next special promotion. After all, small efforts add up over time.
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