So far we have discussed the basic concepts and priorities of self-employment whether it be a store front operation or a home-based business. This article is going to veer away from the black and white, nuts and bolts of running a company and will venture into the more creative aspects of maximizing the potential of your operation.

What am I talking about? We are now dealing with your state of being, both mentally and physically, and the environment you create for yourself. Now that I’ve lost you, let me explain. Let’s tackle the physical aspect first. This one is pretty easy. It’s a proven fact that if you keep yourself in good physical condition, you will have more energy to pursue your goals and your mind will be much more active and creative when it comes time to develop those new game plans or generate ad copy to promote your business.

To expand on the mental concept, another way to optimize your efficiency is to eliminate distractions while you are “brainstorming” all those new ideas for your company. Distractions can take on several forms, but here I will discuss two of the most common. One form is defined as anything that is not revenue producing. By that definition, if it doesn’t make you money, then it doesn’t belong in your business day. That sounds pretty harsh! The point being, one needs to focus on ideas that will better the productivity and bottom line of your venture, and try to eliminate those mental interruptions that will distract you from this goal.

The second type of distraction is physical in nature. We have all been there on this one. How many times have we been trying to focus on a thought or project and we are interrupted by someone or something? Here is where your environment comes into play that I mentioned earlier. The obvious scenario we are talking about here is sitting at the kitchen table trying to be “creative” or just attempting to concentrate on a project with kids screaming and running around and the phone is ringing off the hook, not to mention the television blaring in the background. Not good. A person needs to find a place where they can be alone and focus on the project at hand without all those interruptions. We can also take your environment to another level.

Changing your environment can change your outlook on things. If you do everything in one room (your office) you usually end up diluting everything your doing. You develop that ho-hum attitude as monotony sets in. If you mix things up a bit by finding different places to do different tasks, places that inspire you, you will be surprised how refreshed and rejuvenated you will feel as opposed to sitting in your office all day grinding out your workload. What kind of places am I talking about? Any place that you feel comfortable and at ease will do the trick. That might be sitting at a bench under a big old oak tree in a local park, your favorite coffee shop, the library or even just going for a walk. Just get out of the office and set yourself free! A more stimulating environment will result in a more creative mindset.

Well, there you go. Now that we have gone over all these variables that can influence the productivity, efficiency and the overall success of your business, I have one last item to cover. What is your time worth? Seriously, exactly, what is it worth in dollars and cents per hour? I will give you a formula in my next article that will allow you to calculate what you make per hour based on the income you have set as your goal. Once you see this hourly rate, you will definitely take your daily schedule more seriously.

Until then, here is a quote that puts time in perspective:

“Time has no meaning in itself unless we choose to give it significance” – Leo Buscaglia