6. Be More Productive at What You Do. For those activities you must do yourself, find ways to be as efficient as you can. Your time is your most valuable resource--don't squander it. Create reusable templates for anything that you do repeatedly. Employ tools and computer applications to automate your tasks as much as possible. Streamline your processes so that there is little wasted time and effort, particularly where there are hand-offs between people.
7. Get Organized. You can't be your most productive if you're not organized. Stacks of inbound correspondence mixed with reference material and time sensitive documents aren't conducive to quick reference and follow-up. Establish a filing system that gives you ready access. Set up a "one-touch" approach to dealing with e-mails, letters, text-messages, bills, reference materials, voice messages and other requests. Utilize the "Do, Delegate, Delete or File" principle.
8. Maintain Your Energy. Being tired robs you of the energy you need to stay productive and focused. Get a good night's rest of uninterrupted sleep--seven hours, if possible. Eat a balanced diet and follow good nutritional guidelines. Take vitamin and mineral supplements. Exercise at least 30 minutes a day, three times a week at your doctor-recommended cardio levels--it will recharge your body's battery just like a cell-phone charger.
9. Don't Worry. Leave your worries behind. Do what you can to resolve your problems and that is good enough. Worrying and chronic stress are bad for your health and energy level and provide no substantive benefit to you or others. Studies show that 92 percent of what people worry about has already happened, won't change a thing or is completely unfounded. Channel your energy into more productive uses. Go exercise instead.
10. Maintain Some White Space on Your Calendar. Pretend there isn't as much availability on your calendar as it affords. Take a break. Carve out some time for reflection. The clichÃ© that your best ideas come to you in the shower is more fact than fiction. When relaxed, your brain is free to unleash its power. Albert Einstein, Sir Isaac Newton, Archimedes of Syracuse and countless others were relaxing when they came up with their world-changing ideas.
Mike Hawkins is author of Activating Your Ambition: A Guide to Coaching the Best Out of Yourself and Others, and president of Alpine Link Corporation, a consulting firm specializing in leadership development and sales performance improvement.