Do you often fall victim to those days where you’re scrambling around jumping from one task to the next without finishing any of them? Do you lose sleep over deadlines that have arrived ‘all of a sudden’? Do you waste time cruising through emails a hundred times a day, answering random queries from one client or another?
If any of this sounds familiar then you’re probably one of those people who work reactively, rather than proactively. You’re the type of person who is often ‘busy’ but rarely productive. You’re hardworking and try to ‘get things done’ but often find yourself harried and overworked which leads to procrastination, missed deadlines and a drop in the quality of your work.
[Tweet ““Fail to plan, plan to fail.” Carl W. Buechner”]
Being reactive in business suggests that you don’t take initiative. You let events set your agenda, like riding a horse without reins – you let it take you where it wants. You probably look at other business owners who seem to have their affairs in order and wonder how they do it and despair that you’ll ever be able to be that organised and ‘together.’ But you know what? Being proactive is not really a mysterious and unattainable quality. In fact, it’s just like being reactive, the only difference is: you’re reacting ahead of time. 
Here are 3 easy things you can do in order to eliminate your knee jerk reactions in the office, be more proactive and build a productive and efficient business:
[Tweet “A problem shared is a problem halved.”]Learning to effectively delegate tasks gives you the ability to unload things from your plate and rid yourself of the clutter in your mind that hinders you from being able to plan ahead and manage your own time. Remember, you can do anything, but you can’t do everything. Overworking yourself is not the sign of a good leader. If you want the best for your business and the ability to be proactive, rather than reactive then embrace the power of delegation.
[Tweet “A bad system will beat a good person every time. – W. Edwards Deming”]Setting up systems means streamlining your business processes so they are more efficient and well-organised. Good systems, especially when they incorporate process automation, ensure the smooth running of your business operations. As your company grows some parts of your business will need to run independently from you and your systems will need to become more complex. Your systems and processes should be the foundation that your business is built upon. Without them you’re like a ship without a sail, sure you can still keep your head above water, but you won’t be going anywhere fast!
The final piece of advice to get you being more proactive is one of the most basic: Get. Good. Sleep. When things get busy, sleep gets pushed to the back of the line and we forget (or deny) its importance. Sure, it’s harder to function without a good night’s rest, but there’s actually more to it. The really restorative sleep is the REM cycle which is where our dreams occur. The REM stage is when we are most deeply asleep and only makes up about 25% of our whole night’s rest. Our dreams are where we subconsciously order our thoughts, they help us understand our experiences and prepare us for new challenges. So people who don’t get enough REM sleep will often find it difficult to plan ahead and anticipate change, leading to procrastination and reactive behaviour.
The good news is that you can take steps now to change the way you work and start being more proactive and efficient. Virtual Elves has worked with many businesses over the last 3 years, providing solutions and resources to help businesses run more smoothly and increase their growth and profitability through working with a virtual assistant. Book a discovery call with us today to learn more about how we can help you be proactive and create the space you need in your business.