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Essentialism: What REALLY Matters in Your Business?

One of the more interesting concepts I’ve been introduced to recently is the idea of essentialism. I read Greg McKeown’s book Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less and it provided a great deal of food for thought.

I’ve always been interested in making sure I take care of my most important priorities, but the idea of Essentialism takes that to the next level. It’s about organizing your life so that you focus on the things that are most important — the things that are essential.

This is a good practice in your business as well. You want to discern which activities are essential to the growth of your business and which are probably distractions.

Don’t Get Bogged Down by Being Busy

It can be easy to get bogged down in non-essentials. There are always things tugging at our time and attention. There’s always another meeting or another problem. Before you know it, you feel as though you are spending too much time on the things that don’t really matter — and that don’t actually help move your business forward.

So often we pride ourselves on being busy. It’s a badge of honor. I attended FinCon recently, and Grant Baldwin offered a great keynote address on taking time out. He talked about our society’s obsession with “busy-ness.” We all think we need to be doing several things at once. However, that’s not actually the way to be truly productive. And it’s not the way to help your business thrive.

Instead, it makes more sense to identify the essential items associated with your business and make an effort to focus on those first. It’s not as important to be busy as it is to know what you should be working on. Chances are that the things you spend the most time on aren’t the things that provide you the most benefit to your business. In fact, you might be surprised to discover that you can focus on fewer things and get even better results for your business — and your life.

The Essentials Have the Biggest Impact

It’s the essentials that have the biggest impact on your business. The key isn’t trying to do everything. The key is understanding what tasks will move your business forward and have the biggest impact. These are the essentials that you need to focus on.

Some of the other tasks associated with your business might be necessary. However, that doesn’t mean you have to do them yourself. There are plenty of mundane tasks that are required for your business, but that can be outsourced to someone else. These are usually tasks that have a relatively small impact on your business ability to move forward and grow. You shouldn’t be spending your time and energy on these things.

Instead, you should be concentrating on the tasks that have the biggest impact on your business. Think about which tasks only you can do, and which are likely to help you grow your business in the most efficient way. These are the essentials, and they are the tasks you should spend the most effort on.

Once you learn to recognize the essentials and focus on them, you will be far more likely to see success in your business, and you’ll have more time for what really matters in your life as well.

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