Turning Your Goals into Actionable Projects: Stop Procrastinating and Achieve Your Goals
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 0:00
core to the computer. Hello. Hello, everybody. Welcome to our February guest expert training with the amazing Chelsey Neumayer. I am CMD. I’m one of the cofounders of the nonprofit boot camp here with my partner in crime, Patrick Kirby.
Patrick Kirby 0:18
I friends, how are you?
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 0:21
I am thankful that the snow and the wind hasn’t picked up in Minneapolis yet. So we’re not going to lose power and internet during this call knock on wood, while Chelsea sitting in 80 degree weather. brag about it. We’ll just gonna go with that and feel good about it. But I’m excited for this conversation, because so many of us spend time making goals and making plans but we don’t actually do anything with them. So Chelsea is going to give us all of the things to help us with that. And I’m going to challenge you because Chelsea has spoken at some of my events, I have gone to events that she has spoken at, I’m going to challenge you to listen to this from two perspectives. And I’m trying not to steal too much of your thunder, but one being how can you yourself be more productive, productive? But number two, how can you help your team be more productive, because what I love about Chelsea’s take is it’s not a one size fits all approach. And so you’re going to learn strategies that might work for you. And you’re going to learn strategies that might work for your team. And that’s why I think this is going to be so fantastic. And I’m excited that Patrick’s here because Patrick and I have two completely different approaches to how we get things done. And so we’re going to learn to be a better team as well. And it’s gonna be fantastic.
Patrick Kirby 1:32
I’m very excited, I’m very excited that I am putting off the other things I need to do in order to something that is going to tell me that I shouldn’t put off the things I needed to do. And I like I said earlier in our little pre podcast, one of the things are pre your conversations is I think I’m gonna hate everything about hearing the things that I need to do better. And I have prepared a blank giant notebook of notes that I will eventually take. And I know many of us in the nonprofit realm too. And I know us in the notes all too well. Is that to do gets lists gets long, and then we’re like, Oh no, if I wait, I’m gonna get creative. I’m very excited to learn today. So thank you, Chelsea. Thanks, Jamie for making this a reality. And welcome, everybody to
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 2:19
well, before Chelsea get started just one quick bit of housekeeping. If you are a nonprofit boot camp member, this recording and some additional resources that Chelsea has for you will be available in your student dashboard within 48 hours. So make sure you check there for that. So you can come back and listen to it. But without further ado, Chelsea, I will let you take control. And if anybody has questions during the session, put them in the chat. We’ll be monitoring that. And we’ll have time for q&a at the end. But the floor is yours.
Chelsey Newmyer 2:50
Awesome. Thank you. I’m going to share my screen and we’ll jump right into the myself. Okay, cool. Everybody seen that? Looks good. Cool. So thank you so much, Sammy and Patrick for having me here. I love talking about this topic. And as we were joking before we hit record as well that sometimes I have to take my own advice too. So don’t think that this is this is something that you’re gonna just intuitively know or get right away. But the goal of our conversation today is turning your goals into actual projects. And really what I want to focus on the most in this presentation is the stop procrastinating piece because it all fits together. And it’s one thing to be able to set goals and plan them out. But if we’re not taking action, if we’re procrastinating on it for some reason, then the end result will always be the same. So I always like to kind of set the ground of you know, you’re in the right place here. Like what we’re gonna get out of there, our conversation today. And you’re in the right place, if you’re really good at setting goals, especially if we’re in the nonprofit space, we have to set goals. Most businesses, most organizations have some kind of opportunity for you to set those annual goals for yourself. But it’s the sticking to them. And this applies to personal life too, right? Maybe you have some new year’s resolutions you think about it, you do it every year at your birthday, you love to set the goals, but sticking to them is one of the challenges. You’re also in the right place, if you’re overwhelmed by how to achieve your goals, if you procrastinate daily, or at all right, we all procrastinate. We all see these things. And if you need some tools and resources so that’s really what we’re going to be covering today. So just to introduce myself, my name is Chelsea Neumayer I am a time management productivity coach. And really this business was born out of reading some really frustrating activity advice. So as Sammy says, I think productivity should be personal. It’s not one size fits all we really have to think about the life we live our natural strengths and natural preferences and build systems and structures that support that instead of trying to force ourselves into the mold of the morning routines of the rich and famous right that’s that’s just where we’re gonna find. You’re gonna struggle there. So really making fun of To be personal, and to support solopreneurs and nonprofit leaders, I really say people with have to have to maximize limited resources, right people who can’t just like outsource all the things that they don’t want to do, because that’s the dream. But our reality is, we have to get a lot done. And so I can help you do that more efficiently and more effectively. I have a degree in engineering, and I spent the last decade in the nonprofit space. It’s a whole other story, how I got from engineering to nonprofit. But really, what it’s allowed me to do is have that logical, systematized engineering problem solving part of my brain mixed in with that personal relationship. Passionate side that comes from being in the nonprofit space. Alright, so we’re gonna dive right into setting goals. And, really, there’s not much on this slide, because I think you guys already know how to set the goals, right? There’s lots of different ways that we can do this. There’s a SMART goal setting, there’s kind of a top three approach, really what the key components are, when you’re setting any goal is to ensure that they are measurable. So it’s the difference of, you know, working out more, or working out two times a week, right, we want to have something where we can quantify it, where we can see progress and see the success of that goal. And the other thing is that they’re time based, I think there’s a difference between having like a really fun bucket list are really fun, kind of like those big scary goals. I love those, I encourage those, not dissuading you. But for the purpose of this conversation and this training, I want you to think about the time parameters. So maybe it is those goals you set for yourself every year, maybe their quarterly goals, and we’ll talk about how to break down each of those either way. And the most important part is you’re really, really exciting for you, these are things that should be something that you’re looking forward to achieving or looking forward to seeing that accomplishment at the end of that time duration. And I know that, you know, sometimes if we’re thinking about in the context of work, they’re not always the most sexy, but they should be in challenging and inspiring you no matter what. So all this to say is that there’s no magic bullet, right? There’s no, like super strategy for how you’re going to set the goals. Really, I just want you to pick, you know, three to five. So that we can we can dive in. And I do have some best practices on the next slide. So there’s some goal setting tips, as you’re thinking these through, is to set three to five goals for the year, I think I often see people kind of have some fun with it, you know, like, I, they’ll set a number of goals based on like how old they’re turning if their birthday raise a little 20 goals from when they turned 20. And I love that creativity, I love how kind of cute and fun that is. But that’s also a lot to do. Like that’s, that’s a lot for the year. And so making sure that we’re setting goals, like a realistic number isn’t a really important spot to start, you can always get more, right. If you accomplish one early, you can always add more, we can we can always do that. But I always say set yourself up for success, which is that baseline of what we can accomplish, because you can always exceed it, then we’re going to break it down. We’re going to talk more about this later in the presentation. But this is really using a project management philosophy for your goal goals. So just like we would use a project management to set up big of them or to set up a big mailing, we’re going to apply the same kind of principles to goal setting. We’re going to focus on process. What I mean by this is you can’t control the outcome, you could only control the process. And this was like a bit of a mind blowing moment for me. So, for example, your goal is to raise a million dollars for your organization. Ultimately, you can’t control that outcome. What you can control is how many donor visits you have each month or how many how many outreach calls do you make per day per week, you can or how many sales you close how many conversations you start how many events you have, right, like that’s the process part that we can control. And that’s gonna be really important to think about as we dive into the project management piece. But ultimately, we can’t control the outcome. So just keep that in mind as you’re work as we’re working through this. Keep their goals visible and review them often. I don’t know about you guys, but I become very, like posted notes don’t work well for me because I become blind to them. After a little while like I just they just become like part of the furniture and I don’t see them. So I think it’s important for you to be actively reviewing your goals. So make it part of your morning routine, make it part of your weekly wrap up, fit it into your day or it’s natural but actually read through them. Don’t just think that a post it note or something taped to your mirror is going to be something that sparks enough motivation for you to stay consistent with it or excuse me, and remember them throughout the year, then something is better than nothing. And this ties closely with that focus on the process. So I always want to be thinking about that good, better, best scenario. When I ran my first half marathon, this is what my coach taught me, they said, a good day, is you just run the whole thing. Right? That’s good. Our goal is to just not walk so good is run the whole thing better is hit your your goal for the race. And best case scenario is that you PR or you, you know, I go faster than I originally set for myself. So we want to think about this in even smaller terms is if the process you’re setting is to send, you know, five emails a day to new prospects. Good is sending to, I don’t want to, I don’t want us to get hung up on if I can’t get it all done that I won’t get any of it done. Alright, so we set that process, but good is better than nothing. So just keep that in mind as you’re building these things out. That I often see people get really stuck in that all or nothing mindset, and feel defeated if they can’t hit that full goal or full process that they assess for themselves. And then the last tip here is what gets tracked gets changed. So I really want us to be thinking about developing a tracking method that you can be consistent with. And this goes back to that productivity is personal piece. If you are a paper and pen person, then use a paper and pen tracker, we always type it in at the end of the year to make it digital if you need to, for some reason, right? If you are someone who responds well to apps, and really likes apps, there’s apps for everything these days. But if you are a paper and pen person and you try to remember to type everything in every week, you’re going to struggle with that, because that’s not your natural inclination, it’s not your natural preference. So develop a tracking method that you can be consistent with the most, I always say that the best tool is the one that you consistently use, period. Also jumping home anytime with questions, I know the chat because that’s going on in the chat too. But I love interactions too. And they kind of work through different personal scenarios. So now that you’ve set your goals, and you’ve heard some tips about really how to set yourself up for success within the goals themselves, I want us to think about the kind of the project management for goal setting.
So there are five phases of project management. There’s the initiation stage, which is really setting out the project scope, and the goals. So again, for thinking about this through the lens of goal setting, this would be to make sure that your goal is something that you actually want to achieve. So where is this coming from? Is it something that’s being imposed on you by a supervisor, this is something that’s personal to better some aspect of your life? How I’m really get an understanding of what the goal of the goal is, I guess you could say, right, what are we trying to accomplish? And what are we trying to achieve? And then put the scope around it? What is the time? When is the measurement piece of it? How are we going to know when we’ve achieved success. The planning stage is where you build the roadmap, or this is where you’re creating the schedule, deadline resort and identifying the resources needed to complete everything on time. This is obviously my favorite part of it maybe isn’t obvious, but I am a planner person. So this is my favorite piece. And I think this is where we can really get stuck is over planning. So what I mean by that is if your goal is to read, so make it easy on myself with the math 24 books by the end of the year, then we’re going to have to backtrack up to two books a month, right? But get even a little bit more specific about that. What books are you going to start with? Can you can you prep a list of books to get you started so that you’re never wondering what to read next? Can you do you need any tools or resources? Do you need a Kindle? Because that’s a little bit easier to take with you on the go? Do you need to upgrade to Amazon Unlimited, so that you always have the Quick Access and resources to books? Where can you fit this into your schedule already? Can you read while you’re on your commute? On the subway? Or are you going to read before bed? What is that going to look like? Best case scenario is that you read 20 minutes, but what’s good gonna be so I really want you to think through all of these questions. Again, if we’re coming at it from a work lens, especially in the nonprofit space, you’re goal is to raise a million dollars, we can identify how much you need per month. But we know that that’s not the typical donor cycle, we typically see kind of natural spikes and cadences throughout the years, especially in the year and fiscal year. If you’re doing any particular event or have a given day, we know that there’s going to be those spikes. So how can you back track around those, those natural spikes in fundraising, to ensure that you’re hitting those goals, or that you’re ready for it and ramping up with those frameworks going to be so this stage is the most, most bulk, so to speak, it’s most work. But it’s really, really important that we think through all the different pieces of it. The other thing that’s really important to the planning stages not actually on the slide is doing some risk management. And what I mean by risk management is thinking about the things that can go wrong, and what’s your plan going to be otherwise? So if you have a big event, and you typically have a sponsor cover the cost of XYZ, you know, the cost of the venue, let’s say, what’s going to happen, if that sponsor doesn’t fall through this year? Do you have a plan B? What happens if you your Kindle breaks? You know, can you get to the library on time, or vice versa, right. So thinking about some of the things that can go wrong, is actually really, really helpful, because then you’re just not going to, you’re just going to have an easier time overcoming it, when obstacles come up your way you already have a plan. So take some time to think through all of those pieces within the planning stage of your
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 16:39
Chelsea, I have a question about the plan. So I would assume like the planning stage would be specific for each goal that for each goal. So how important is it to kind of map some of this out like the reverse engineering, which I love, but how important is it to map all of these goals out and kind of lay them on top of each other to make sure that you can execute all of those goals? Because I think a lot of times we like to say, Okay, well we’re gonna do these things. And we don’t really think about what we have to do to prep for the end result. And then we find ourselves stacking everything on top of each other.
Chelsey Newmyer 17:11
Yes, absolutely. Great question. I definitely have a tip about that. And we talk about that in the execution phase. That’s like, that’s not the doing the work piece. But that’s absolutely so important, and why I recommend limiting the number of goals that we’re setting for ourselves in the first place, so that we can see that, but if you can, absolutely you can map it out, and see how those things are gonna line up. So that you know, you know, again, you have this big event that’s going to happen, what’s the start date for that, and putting that in the planning process, as well? Absolutely. So once we’ve done a lot of planning, and again, this is my favorite piece, I recommend taking some really dedicating some time into mapping out each planning out each of your goals, and thinking about how they overlap and how they work together and making those adjustments accordingly. And also really identifying the resources that you need are you going to need to bring in an assistant or someone new on your team, for any point of any point throughout the year. Other financial resources, again, we’re talking about donors or just getting thinking through all of the details of those things. And asking yourself those questions is going to be really helpful in making that goal feel that much more achievable. So then we’re in the execution phase. And this is where it’s really just cranking away, right? It’s executing the plan. And again, this is where people get stuck, right? So this is where I know I get stuck. Because things come up. And I don’t want it to feel I don’t want it to sound like I’m being super rigid about this, right, we always want to make sure that we’re leaving space in our plan in our year, to be inspired to take advantage of new and exciting opportunities that come up, right we, we want to give space for that. And so that’s why as Sammy mentioned, it’s really important to map that allow and see where their spaces and when you wouldn’t be able to take advantage of that kind of opportunity. And so making sure that we have those space, that space in our calendar. But as we’re executing, what can keep us motivated, and keep us inspired, is that monitoring and controlling piece of the project management and so this is really setting up mechanisms for monitoring progress. Again, this can be in teams, this would be a weekly checking call. This would be using that paper a digital tracker that you’re using to keep track of your goals. If you are your own business if you are your own entity. You can still have weekly check ins with yourself, even if they’re personal goals. Have a weekly check in with yourself. Pick a day doesn’t have to be Friday. Pick a day and check in And on how you’re doing. So I actually started implementing this last year. So I’ve done it for over a year. Now, I have a paper pen person. So I have a paper pen, or paper piece of paper. It’s just like a random template, I got off the app online. But I do it by instead of doing it every Monday or every Friday, I actually do it every week. So if the first of the month falls on a Monday, then I’ll do it from the first to the sixth, and then start the seventh to the to the 15th. So I are 13. So I do like that. So it’s kind of fun, because then it changes up what day it rotates on. And every week I track certain important measurements for my business, how many followers do I have? How many subscribers do I have? How many new clients for leads, and I just check in every week, do it on a piece of paper, I make notes, if there’s any big fluctuations or any big spikes or decreases, I’ll make a note of what was happening that week. And it’s been really, really great to go back and see where those spikes are. And see that progress. Because I look forward to it. It’s something fun for me to do. And it’s not something that I have to feel like a chore every Friday. Because it I’m I’m on vacation Friday, and I don’t have time, right? There’s some flexibility there. Yeah, celebrate wins. It’s just and then I have a monthly check in with myself to so you can we can customize. You can customize this and really think about what’s going to work for you and what you can be consistent with. And then the closing projects are temporary endeavors goals are temporary endeavors. That’s why we mentioned having that time blocking around that time restriction, I mean, around it, they’re going to end and they need to be formally closed. So this is where you would celebrate yourself. This is where you would check your progress, identify what goals are going to be for next year do you need to grow Was that too much was that too easy, really check in with yourself and identify what worked and what didn’t didn’t work, what resources you needed. So that next time you’re even even more successful, however you define that. So when I jump into tools, I again, always want to caveat that this is going to be what works best for you. And so I put pros and cons to both because there’s pros and cons to both. And I struggle back and forth all the time. I think both digital and paper tools have incredible benefits. If you are looking at digital tools, obviously if we’re going basic, we have Excel, there’s a great Gantt charts, functions as Sandy mentioned, so you can see what things are pacing out over each other, and how different pieces of that project or goals are going to interact. But there’s also great tools like Asana Monday, clickup Trello, smart sheets, there’s so many good resources out there. And I talk a little bit more about some tips about how to use tools on the next slide. But if you’re going to use a digital tool, obviously, the benefit is that it’s incredibly flexible. If things come up with things change, you can change a deadline deadline and have things adjust accordingly. And incorporate the team it goes with you. And then what I love most about it and I’m sorry, this is getting a little cut off is that you can get notifications. Because I always use the example of like giving Tuesday’s a great example, you cannot remember that you are going to do a GivingTuesday campaign November 1, like you can’t like that is entirely too late, the chips gone, you’re gonna be scrambling, it’s gonna be a mess. That’s like a that’s like a caucus first reminder, right? So if we can proactively set up those notifications in those tools, that’s where there’s an incredible value and using a digital software. And then obviously, there’s live changes. So if you’re working there in a team, you can see how the members of your team are interacting and changing and updating things. I really again, even though I’m a paper and pen person, I really like Asana for my big picture plans and goals because of those proactive reminders. So I don’t use it as like a day to day to do list or task manager. But I do use it to map out big projects and things that are going to have deadlines weigh in the future. Because it just helps keep me on track. And then obviously the benefit of paper thinking do printed wall calendars, poster boards, white boards, flip charts to the gold go fashion notebook. For me the benefit is that it’s more creative, has more flow. I personally think better when I can draw things out and map things out on paper. It’s much more visible. You can as I mentioned, keep it taped to the wall of your office. sort of keep it somewhere handy. And it’s more visual. Again, I’m, I’m a visual person. So I like to see it all mapped out and how those things interact. But obviously, there’s like, you know, the downsides? Are there the downsides, the kind of the opposite between the digital and paper tools? Chelsea, I
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 25:20
have a question for you. Sorry, I keep interrupting you. But I’m the same way. I have paper that I use for like, like, I’m like you, when I write things down, like I get more creative, I can build out more that way. And then I find that like, I use paper for the brainstorming and like the kind of creating new ideas and whatnot, and then I then the things that are going to happen go into the digital platform like that’s what gets done. Is that kind of how you utilize both because I want to make sure people don’t think that we’re like duplicating efforts, right, like they each have their own purpose.
Chelsey Newmyer 25:57
Absolutely, yeah. And that that a hybrid approach is I probably should have a third aisle, you know, third column here for a hybrid approach to it. And that’s absolutely a way to use it, I think you obviously we don’t want to be, we don’t want to be duplicating everything. If it becomes a place where we lose time. So if this is going to add a lot, you know, if brainstorming it all out and kind of getting it all on paper helps first and then transferring it all, but then being able to maintain it. So that’s the most important part. And that’s why I think like when I say like more visual is all have that Asana tab up in there, like if I’m not, it becomes like, I don’t actively check it, I need the emails, right? Like, I need the prompt. And so it versus like my notebook, it’s there all the time, I can put a post it note on the paper, I can flip through it, I can read it every day. For me, that’s just the more this visible option. So use that project management tool to schedule out those big deadlines to set yourself those prompts. If again, this is if you lean paper, use a project management tool, set the start dates to set the big milestones for yourself, so that you get the prompts you get the notifications, and then you can transfer it onto a piece of paper or vice versa. But whenever you can maintain what I don’t like to record C or what I what I often find people catching themselves doing is spending a lot of time setting up a system that doesn’t instinctively work for them. So they will spend hours building beautiful Asana templates, and then literally never look at Asana again, and I am 1,000% guilty of this. So I’m speaking from experience. So again, this really just comes back to the tool that works best for you don’t be chat is blowing up. Yes.
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 27:58
Sure. Getting more feedback from that than anything else. And I love that so much, because I think you’re 100% or 100%. Yes. Yeah,
Chelsey Newmyer 28:07
so, so don’t like at this is just one of the things that I see most often with clients is they’re just trying to do it because they think this way, because they think that that’s the thing, at least somebody else doing it. And I think that they should like get on board. I struggled with this myself, because I think I know that I should be maybe I’d be more efficient or more effective, did everything digitally. But I know from my own experience, that that just doesn’t work for me, I will I cannot maintain that system. On a day to day basis, I’m not going to be someone who instinctively typed my to do list into the computer. So I’ve just leaned into the system that works well for me. And that’s great, it works well. So that’s fine encourage clients to do Lean into the system is going to work best for you. And if you’re in an environment where you’re forced to use one of these tools, so let’s say you are on a team, and you’re forced to use a digital tool like this, then that’s a you know, obviously that’s a different conversation, right, you may be in a position where you have to, and then we can talk about what that hybrid approach looks like. For you were you’re still incorporating and capturing everything digitally for the sake of the team. But you have your own personal tasks and projects organized and managed in a way that works best for you.
I logged in my child for for the first time in ages wondering with my left in there. Yeah, my Asana board has like deliverables from August of 100. I’m sure that are not checked off. So that’s great. Alright, so a few last minute tips. As I’ve said probably dozens of times already create the schedule and set the deadlines and set a start date. That’s just really, really important. So it’s not you know, if you’re going to read two books by the end of the month, then you need a plan. Up to start the first book, right? Like, you just have to have those those prompts along the way, make the tasks as small as possible and be really specific. I’m going to talk more about this when we jump into procrastination next. But the project or the goal is going to be raising million dollars. But that is not what goes on your to do list. Right? What goes on your to do list is that process piece of reach out to five new prospects today, right? Like we need to make these really specific, really actionable, and really bite sized pieces so that you have definitive beginning and ends to that task. And you know what to do next to get started with the mention fully invest in the tool, if you are going to lean into a digital software, lean into it, do some research, watch some YouTube videos really make the most of all of the features and functions in there. Because that’s the other thing that I can see happening quite a bit is people jumping from one to the next because they think that the next tool is going to have that like one little missing piece that they think they kind of sort of need. Without just again being into it commit to commit to the tool that you choose choose. assign roles and responsibilities you’re talking about on a team. This is an important piece of delegating, making sure that everybody knows what their responsibility is, in order to complete that, that project or that goal. And then keep an eye out for repetitive tasks. And again, we’re this is thinking about a little lens of work. But if you’re doing the same thing, every day, every week, be aware, start keeping track of those things. Where are there opportunities for automation? Where are there opportunities to make that easier and faster for yourselves. I mean, this could be something as simple as save the template of the email that you’re sending to those prospects. So that you have a template of email and you’re just updating bits and pieces of it instead of retyping it every time right like we can we can it doesn’t start 60s not sophisticated. It doesn’t have to be this fancy automation system. But just pay attention to what you’re doing quite often. That takes up a lot of your time. And then be on the lookout for scope creep. Okay, if the goal is to raise a million dollars, the goal is to raise a million dollars, then we don’t need to like up it to 1.1 just be like you don’t have to write. So watch out for scope creep. If you’re having an event, lets you know, stay in the lane. If you are excited about a new opportunity, then short right there. You can always add pieces. But don’t let that become accidental. Right? Be really intentional about staying focused on what the goal is what the intent of it is. And if you are going to change it, making sure you understand why and that there’s real, there’s reasons behind that. Oh, I’m actually doing great on time. I’m so excited because we’re going to have to dig into procrastination. But happy to take any questions at this point.
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 33:02
I just want to highlight something that you said in that it’s okay to change the goal. But make sure you know why you’re doing it. I think that’s worth repeating. Because I think a lot of times we do it based off of just emotion or like our own internal feelings as opposed to data or so I just want to call that out because I think that was a really good point that you made.
Patrick Kirby 33:25
Well, in addition to that being brilliant, it’s a really good opportunity for you to explain to your board members or your supporters or your stakeholders on why you’re trying to change the goal as well, to the fair in the loop and that transparency there is going to help you not only get your supporters but your support system. That’s going to help you get to wherever you need to go to so that again, I just that you and I are the same. Look at that. We’re on the same page, Sammy, do it. I knew it. But we have gotten to procrastination yet. So I’m going to hold my tongue and tell them so.
Chelsey Newmyer 33:56
Yeah, I love that. It’s such a good point too. Because I mean, you can always exceed a goal. Right, like you can always exceed the goal. That’s like, that’s always an option. And there’s rarely anything wrong. I can think of a single incident where it’s it’s a bad thing to like, exceed the goal. So yeah, I love that. Yeah, just being being intentional. Keeping everybody in the loop. As to why that goals is being changed is really important. All right, so now we’re gonna talk about staying motivated. Jumping into procrastination, so procrastination is the action of delaying or postponing something. I always like to start with this slide. Because there’s a difference between procrastination and being lazy or laziness. I also always like to say, let’s stop calling ourselves procrastinators. Like let’s just like remove that identity because when you have as an identity, it just becomes that much harder to change. You’re just procrastinating. It happens to the best of us. Right? Like there’s nothing bad about that. The difference between procrastination and laziness is that when you’re procrastinating you recognize that you want to reach the goal, you want to do the thing that something’s blocking you. So you’re willing to exert the effort. You’re just something’s in the way, right like something is mentally or physically or emotionally blocking you from getting it done laziness as being unwilling to exert the effort. You don’t you don’t care, you’re not willing to put forth what needs to get done to make it happen. When you’re procrastinating, you also recognize that that’s bad, but you recognize that there’s going to be consequences to procrastinating and that there’s going to be something that’s like, you know, something to the consequences. Yeah, as I say it to the to not doing that work. Versus laziness is you’re really prioritizing the short term feel good right now, of the slight discomfort of starting the task. So that’s just another important distinction there is that when you’re when you’re in a lazy stage, it’s like man, it feels really good to just lay on the couch right now. And I’m not willing to exert that unnecessarily effort to go do the dishes. Again, neither is bad. I’m not putting any judgment around those, I just want to make a really important distinction between procrastination and laziness. So why we procrastinate, these are the six reasons that I like to highlight. As to why people procrastinate, I’m sure that there’s more. But these are the six most encompassing that I have found so far. The first one is abstract goals. And this is where we’re just unclear of what the goal is. So this is where things are really big, or you don’t have I always use the example of like starting a podcast, that’s a really big goal. There’s a lot of decisions around that. And if you don’t have some of those decisions made, it can feel really ambiguous and give you a really hard, you’re gonna have a hard time getting started. And decisiveness is discomfort or uncertainty around making a decision. This often masquerades as research. So if you are someone who is a researcher and gets really sucked into figuring out what that best tool is, I don’t want you to, I don’t want you to go spend two days trying to decide between Asana Monday and suck up right like that, it’s gonna feel like you’re researching what you’re actually doing is just procrastinating, you’re actually just delay making a decision about what tool to use and what when to stick with fear of failure. This is a big one, right? I see this quite often, it’s this fear of embarrassment or repercussions this is when you are worried about putting yourself out there, you’re scared of a consequence. I remember sending my first mass solicitation email, and it was like full blown panic, sending an email to 1000s of people because I was just like, there’s going to be a mistake in here, I know it. I know, something’s wrong with the list. And based off the email, something’s like something’s wrong. And so that can be a big reason to procrastinate. Waiting for a deadline is when you require additional pressure of an approaching deadline, this isn’t always a bad thing. So I’ll just want to bake a big star around this one. I actually used to tutor high school students on like executive function. And everybody has a different threshold for like the deadline and the pressure that they feel to reach that deadline or to complete the work to finish that deadline. No one has a higher threshold than a teenage boy, they don’t feel the pressure of that deadline until it is 30 seconds away. Okay, everybody has a different threshold. If you find yourself requiring that deadline, where we can get into a trap is life happens. Right? Give yourself 24 hours to get this task done. You had two weeks, give yourself 24 hours because you need the pressure. Now all of a sudden you’re sick, your kids sick, your pets, something happens with your pet, right? Like your internet goes out. So this is really just a matter of setting up some artificial deadlines, setting up some different tools and strategies, so that you can still feel that pressure of a deadline, without it becoming risky and becoming a problem. Task recursion, you just don’t like to do it. Right? I mean, there’s just a reality, some stuff we just don’t like to do. And so you’re gonna get stuck in there and procrastinate the task and then perfectionism is waiting or wanting to the end result of the perfect fear of failure. This is a close cousin, the fear of failure. But it’s really when we’re just sitting there tweaking, changing questioning every little piece of the thing we have to do before releasing it out into the world. All right. So I also want to joke say here what procrastination can look like because I mentioned Little before, like, it can masquerade as research, right? Procrastination doesn’t always just look like laying around on the couch, like this cute little pop, right? It can, that’s what I would call buffering, right? It’s when we’re just like puttering around or like, you know, like not really doing anything. But like, not just relaxing, either, like, you’re just like in this weird little in between phase, then or we’re just like straight up out, or just like I’m on the couch, doing it, I’m ignoring all of my problems. This is two and three are where I see the most people, if you are at conferences, or trainings like this, if you are kind of like a go getter kind of person. This is where I see most people fall into this bucket. And this is productive procrastination. So this is when you are consistently choosing tasks that feel productive, instead of working on the big thing. So I always joke like my apartment was in college was never cleaner than when I had to study for finals. Right, because I could clean the whole house which felt very productive. Instead of studying for finals, that is still procrastination. Because what I what I needed to do was study, what you needed to do is write that solicitation email. But I said, You’re cleaning out your inbox, you’re tidying up your office, like you’re doing things that feel good, because they have definitive beginning and ends. But it’s not ultimately not helping you reach your goal. And then procrastinate planning, this is when instead of just taking action, you’re still stuck in that planning stage, you’re still mapping it out, you’re on a day to day basis, this can look like rewriting your to do list or thinking ahead for the next three weeks, instead of just, again, taking action right away. avoidance is kind of all the things combined, right, you’re doing everything else. But that task, distancing yourself from the results can be really self defeating. So this is where you start thinking to yourself, like, it doesn’t matter how long I’ve worked on it, it’s not going to be good anyway. So you’re, you’re not giving yourself the opportunity to be successful. So you’re limiting the amount of time you have to work on it. So that no matter what the results are, you can blame that you didn’t have enough time.
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 42:25
Can I ask you a question about this one, you have what’s so how do we separate ourselves between distancing ourselves from the results in the procrastination phase? And then in the planning phase, knowing that we can’t control the outcome, we can only control the actions like how do you kind of marry those two together? So you don’t get in that procrastination cycle? Does that make sense? Like, like, if we’re trying to, like in the planning phase, we know like, we have our goal, like our goal is to raise a million dollars. So we can do the actions. But we can’t control the outcome of those actions, we can just do our best and learn and grow from that as we go. So how do we kind of have that mindset and then not fall into the procrastination piece of like, well, I can’t control it. So now I’m just not going to do the work to get there. Because you don’t like me?
Chelsey Newmyer 43:20
Yeah. So I again, I think it’s really focusing on the process. So like, maybe on a smaller scale, the thought is that donors not gonna respond to me anyway. Why Bob, or, like, I don’t need to write a nice email, or I’ll only need to give myself two minutes to write this email, because they’re not gonna respond anyway. Okay, so it’s like, I think it’s like a little bit more micro, instead of like, the big macro goals here this is, that’s where I see this, like, if you have a report you’re working on, or some kind of deliverable that you have to do. And you’d think it’s just going to suck no matter what, then you’re less inclined to just give up, we’re less inclined to give ourselves the space, we need to actually do a really good job.
Patrick Kirby 44:01
Chelsea, can I add one year for future reference, and if it applies to more people than just me, which is the term just to procrastinate planning, where I procrastinate, because I justify my ability to do better. So I explain it as purposeful, rather than a reason. For me avoiding things. So I use my superpowers of estimating as a way to be creative genius. At least that’s what I tell myself and my brain is best that procrastination can look like.
Chelsey Newmyer 44:40
Absolutely, because I think that that’s actually when I get into what I didn’t say in the last slide is that these things can be mix and match. Right? Like what what it can look like and why we procrastinate, can can mix and match depending on a task. It’s not like there’s just one reason often what’s really valuable about training like this Just recognizing what is the reason what is causing you to procrastinate. So if you’re in that stage, if you think procrastination is your superpower to me, it sounds like you’re someone who needs a deadline, you need that pressure of an impending deadline to get creative to get focused to, to get inspired, right? You’re like, Oh, crap, I gotta get this done now. So for that, it’s, it’s like, sometimes it’s just a matter of like setting artificial deadlines, is giving it to someone, even if it’s not the real thing, like telling someone else that they’re, they’re gonna have it or review it by a certain time. So that you can build that artificial pressure on yourself. But I see someone in the comments out like feeling inspired and hope you all want to these clicks, I think the ways to overcome will be helpful here. catastrophizing is again, that everything is going to be terrible. And you just are stuck in this, like, oh, my gosh, everything’s terrible. blaming her anger, this isn’t my problem, this shouldn’t be my responsibility. I don’t want to do this work, so and so should have done a better job. And then wishful thinking is also Patrick, where I could see this falling into and this is where you’re like, I only need 10 minutes to get this done. I’m going to be fine. Okay. And so you’re just wishfully thinking that things are going to take you less time than they actually do. Okay, so now we’re gonna dive into overcoming procrastination break. The first one I always talk about is breaking down your tasks, oftentimes, we are stuck on the fact that feels too big. And that’s where you may be waiting for. Waiting for that inspiration, right? Because it’s so big and even over to get started. It’s, it’s overwhelming to break those things down into the smallest possible pieces. So this is, again, incorporating everything that we’ve talked about so far, of having tasks that have definitive beginning and end. So we have three to five things in your to do list every day. What’s on there is not raising million dollars, what’s on there is reaching out to five people send five prospect emails, okay, really clear tasks. Remove the distractions, I’m not going to dive too much into this is fairly obvious, anything that is pulling us away from our work. Just set yourself up for success is how I always say it, if you know that things are naturally distracting for you are going to pull you away, just put them in a place that’s not as as plentiful, you know, that’s not gonna pull you if you are someone who is a big procrastinator productive procrastinator don’t work in your kitchen, if there’s stuff in the sink, right? Like, you’re just gonna want to stand up and say, Oh, I can’t do this until the dishes are done. But like you can so try to set your CV don’t put yourself in an environment that also supports that. The Five Minute Rule, I have two approaches to the first one is to make yourself work on it for five minutes. So you only have to work on for five minutes typically got Getting started is the hardest part. The second way I talk about the five minute rule is to think about it as a warm up or a lead up. So sometimes I will take a list of all the tasks that I need for my big brain dump list that are five minutes or less. And give myself 2030 minutes, just crank out as many as I can. It puts me in a zone, it puts me in a work mode, it clears a bunch of clutter off of my brain dump list. And now I’m like ready to roll. Self care, food, rest water, everything sucks. When you’re tired, everything’s harder when you’re hungry. So treat yourself with the care that you need in order to be your most focused self. Make it fun, try to pair that task with a particularly exciting, well, let’s be real with something fun, right playlist, podcast, your favorite treat a cup of coffee, just pairing that task with something that you enjoy doing can really be helpful. One thing at a time. This is so hard to do. But I sometimes I will even take my piece of paper with my to do list and like fold it up so that I only see one thing at a time. You can also write each individual task on a piece or on a piece of paper or a post it note. And so you’re only seeing one at a time and then when it’s done, you can make crumble it up and throw it away which feels really good. Visualize and identify the why this comes back to the they’re a little woowoo. But this really comes back to thinking about the big goal, right that why behind your big goal? What is this going to help you achieve in the long run and visualize it being done? Visualize celebrating, reaching a million dollars at the end of the year. What is that money going to do and how is it going to impact your organization? What new projects or endeavors are you going to be able to take on with this new money that you’ve raised, how are you going to think your donors? How are they? How excited are they going to be that they got to be part of this amazing project, put yourself in that mindset. It sounds a little woowoo. But it can really help if you’re just having a bad day and are just really lacking motivation or inspiration. Think about the visualization of the end result. And the why behind the goal as a whole. And a couple bonus tips, just wanna make sure we have questions at the end, reduce decisions, okay, we all have a limited capacity every day for how many decisions we can make decision, fatigue is a real thing. So plan your day, or week ahead of time, sit at your desk, the goal. If you have to do it that morning, that’s fine. You can reset your day at any time. But don’t spend a lot of time deciding what you’re going to do. Okay, jump in right away. Identify the one big thing. OB T, again, for having just a really terrible day. What is the one thing you have to get done, in order to keep back on moving forward, in order to keep that project moving forward, develop a work virtual, this just helps your brain get into the work mode. For me, sometimes it looks like putting on a Lo Fi or all of a sudden, like Latin music, right? I really like the beat, but I can’t understand the words we don’t get distracted by the lyrics. Sometimes I’ll light a candle or a put lipstick on because it keeps me from snacking weirdly. So whatever that ritual is for you. The goal is to that you do it every time you’re about to dive into a bigger work project, and let your brain know, okay, it’s work time. Work or do nothing. This is a really funny tip I read about and it’s really great. If you are a gogogo kind of person, you either get to work on the task you have to do, or you don’t do anything, you have to just like lay on the floor, or sit in your chair with no phone, no distractions, nothing. Like nothing that we want to do. Because later if you fall asleep and you needed to rest, okay, if you fall asleep, you needed a break. Okay, so, but that’s the that’s the first thing I hear about a lot. If I fall asleep, then you needed to, then you needed a nap. But oftentimes, if you just are forced to do nothing, then we’re gonna run off, jump in negative motivations. I don’t talk about this a whole lot. But there are consequences to procrastinating, there are consequences for not hitting our goals, especially in a workplace. So while it’s not the nicest thing to think about, what are you missing out on by procrastinating? What are you missing out on by not thoroughly planning and not executing every single day? And what are the consequences going to be for that because there are consequences. So if you need a little bit of reality check, come back to that. And then just another reminder, turn off notifications and find a nice quiet place to work so that distractions are not pulling you from your ultimate goal. And then as I wrap up, don’t beat yourself up. Procrastination can often lead us to the best ideas. This is why we get good ideas on Xbox or in the shower or just when we when we remove ourselves from the workplace. This is where sometimes the inspiration happens. So don’t beat yourself up. If you are just having one of those days, struggling to focus or struggling to get started. It’s not going to be forever, it’s just one day. So with that, I’ll say thank you. And I’ll leave it open for questions. And I’m happy to stick around after time too. But you can follow me on my website, Chelsea humor.com, or on Instagram at Chelsea and coaching. And then I have a podcast called from overwhelmed to under control. And as Sammy mentioned that there’ll be some discount codes available for members with the replay of this video. But I’m going to stop sharing so we can chat. And then if I need to pull up my slide and reference anything. I’m happy to do that. Thank you. Sorry, I had to rush to
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 54:12
the end. No, you’re great. This was amazing. And I’m going to actually take some of these strategies to my daughter because as you mentioned, high school students. We just went through end of quarter and she was like up until midnight and up early trying to finish all her projects. And we got in the car on the way to school the next day and I said congratulations, you did it. Can we maybe like do better next quarter and not save everything to the last minute? And she said probably not. So she’s owning it. So maybe we’ll try some other strategies to get those things done. So thank you so much for this. We do have one question and I’m not going to say their name because I will murder it. So I think you know who you are, but they were asking about the productivity too. What are the project management tools that you mentioned earlier? Like? Are there specific ones that you have for personal development or personal goal tracking versus like a professional situation that you might share?
Chelsey Newmyer 55:15
Yeah, I mean, there’s there’s a lot of different habit, habit tracker type of apps. But honestly, all of those that I mentioned can be used for personal as well. And it actually can be used for both I think asana and Monday, you create kind of different what do they call projects, within the tool, and so you can have one that’s just for personal goal Senate. I like seeing them all in one spot. I like having as few places I have to check for things as possible is kind of my rule of thumb. So I don’t, I should probably get a few recommendations. But again, I’m not a digital app person. So I just don’t know off the top my head any
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 55:55
paper, like a paper planner that you love the most like which are which are your go twos.
Chelsey Newmyer 56:00
Guys, I’ll show you because it’s pretty at this. I’m like a low pretty low tech. It’s a binder. And I have I have like my weekly that’s all my goals. I have the trackers that I put in here. And then I have loosely paper as my journal. So from a more day to day basis, my to do list is a half sheet of recycled paper. Really low tech here. But I think again, there’s so many great planners and resources out there that have fun with it by view, see what you like, what you know what you’re missing, or what, what you need. And lean into that.
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 56:43
I’ll give a plug for the full focus planner, which is what I use, which is what Oh, sure. Yeah, by Michael high, which is in alignment as like pieces of paper flying out, which is in alignment with a lot of the things that I talked about,
Chelsey Newmyer 56:56
because I also created a planner. Oh, you surely? Yes. So I created it’s called uncluttered. And it’s available on self serve. And the goal of this is really it’s a place to have your brain dump are all your planning, and then a weekly to do list. So it’s not that, like a calendar planner, it’s just this is what I need to do each day.
Patrick Kirby 57:19
Well, I’ll give a plug for and I’ll give a plug for Bell bank post it notes, which I will have an entire desk post notes. Because post it notes.
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 57:32
Sounds great. But I will say what one of the things that I love that Patrick does is he has his little idea folder that just sits on his desk his not right now idea folder.
Patrick Kirby 57:44
There’s three of them, or four of them. Yeah, so there’s the idea folder. So this is what was created from the smarter human beings in my office that realize that my brain works in very bizarre ways in which I will come up with a random idea. And I go, we should do this now. And I just need to say it out loud to get it out of my brain to put it down on paper. And then I will put it in a free one to three folders. One. This is a weekend project, I’m allowed one weekend project a week. So I get to pick one of these things to work on whether it’s a blog, or a book or something like this, and then the content ideas. So like just a random like that up, you should write about that someday or do something with it. And then here’s the fun things we can do when we’re all done with the crap that we’re currently trying to work on. And that folder is the thickest. But if you can get out of your head, I think that’s part of the reason why I think you just jot it down on your to do list and then that becomes unmanageable. And they’ve now folded away for me.
Chelsey Newmyer 58:39
That was the inspiration from the the the brain dump planner, right? It’s it’s an opportunity to capture those things that don’t need to be done right away. But you don’t want to lose them. And, you know, that’s, I think is I think the folder idea is absolutely brilliant. Because it’s flexible. Right. And that has a lot of
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 59:01
a lot of great. It has the flexibility is important their funding, it’s awesome. But I do have one other question for you. And then I’ll let Patrick asking, since he has but if we’re listening to this, and we’re hearing all of these different types of procrastinating, we’re hearing these different types of strategies for kind of combating that as a leader, if we have a team, like what might be some good questions to ask our team members to understand their style so that we can support everybody and kind of building the best productivity.
Chelsey Newmyer 59:30
Yeah, so that’s, I think, I guess the question is, how do we support? How do you can help you help your team? I think that’s what I would recommend to any team that can actually, I like to soliciting these as well is have a compensation about the different preferences of your team. Like how do they like to work and really understanding what everybody’s preference is because if you have a team that is digital loving team, then then you can create a really awesome project management tool that is going to work well for everybody. If you have someone who really likes, you know, we had, we had joking that when I was working in an office to like if I had my headphones on, that means like I’m in the zone, please don’t interrupt. But if someone didn’t know that if I didn’t explicitly say that, then you wouldn’t know. And so sometimes we just having those conversations can be really, really helpful to understand people’s preferences. And encourage that, right? Like no one, it’s personal, don’t try to force anyone into into a mold if you don’t have to, or into a box if you don’t have to. But also having those weekly check ins, right? No, no one wants another meeting. But really being there as a resource to say, Okay, this is what I got done this week, this is what I need. As you know, if I’m in the, I’m talking to my supervisor, this is what I need from you to be successful. Next week, this is what I’m going to work, you know, this is, this is what I got done, this is what I’m doing. And this is what I need from you to be successful. Right. That’s kind of how I feel I’ve done a lot of the weekly check ins that I do now,
Patrick Kirby 1:01:01
those stand up meetings, I’m telling you, those are the best ones, just 20 minutes, 15 minutes, you know what you’re doing, what your goals are, and then how they can help you get to them in the first place. I know that you’ll I know this crew will maybe have some additional questions. And so we will make sure that anyone that comes in and sends us a note, we’ll pass it along to you Chelsea in the walls a bunch of links as well. I know we’re up against the clock per usual. But listen, this is one of the better insights to my own brain. So selfishly, I appreciate you. But I think everybody else did, too. This is one of those things where I think we we think our own superpowers are tackling this by ourselves without any sort of direction or framework, and you’ve done a wonderful job. And such a brilliant way of simplifying the fact that we can actually like, okay, they have a problem here. This is how I kind of weaseled my way out of it and done it in a way that’s not finger wagging. I appreciate that as well. So
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 1:02:05
Nicole’s got one last question. In the chat on are there prompts on a brain dump list?
Chelsey Newmyer 1:02:11
Now my I did my brain dump. So just click on the brain dumps, I do it every week. I don’t recommend more than that, unless you’re really hitting this like overwhelm point. So every week, just write down all of the things that are in your head. I mean, it’s it’s brained up as like not a great word for your mind, sleep, clutter, clear, whatever you want to call it. Just get everything out of your head. It can be personal work, ideas, you have projects you want to do. Getting it all out onto a piece of paper just gives you the space to think more clearly. And the neck the priorities will raise up naturally because you’re gonna write it down to like, Oh, crap, I have to try to do that this week. Right? So don’t there’s no rules, right? There’s no like, you don’t have to be as specific or general. Like just get it all down onto a piece of paper. But that is not your to do list. Do not use it as your to do list because that is overwhelming. And it’s gonna feel terrible. So your to do list has three to five things pulled off of that brain dump list.
Sami Bedell-Mulhern 1:03:11
I love it. Well, that’s yeah, that’s a great tip to end us on. Chelsea, thank you so much. The replays will be up within the next 48 hours as long as well as links to connect with Chelsea even more and her amazing discount on her inbox clutter cleanup. I don’t know if I said that right. Podcast length, all the things why don’t you shout out the name of your podcast for those that are listening in case they want to binge listen this week.
Chelsey Newmyer 1:03:37
Absolutely. So it’s called from overwhelmed to under control. Thank you guys so much. It’s a ton of fun. I look forward to hearing if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
Patrick Kirby 1:03:46
Awesome, my friends. Thanks for showing up. Thanks Chelsea.
Chelsey Newmyer 1:03:49
Bye. Thank you