Only do what only you can do.

Last week, someone was telling that he did a lot of work in his house by himself. Painting, installing electrics, breaking walls… You can save a lot of money by doing so. That is true, at least for some of us.

Not everyone is as handy as he would like, but still a lot of people are renovating their houses themselves. Why? To save money? That might be a valid reason but did you ever made your own bill? You still need the materials and you have to spend your own time painting or whatever else. Time is money you know. But I agree, if you can do it yourself it will be cheaper. But I don’t like to paint. So why should I be forced to do this? There are plenty of people that make their living from it. If you choose to hire someone to paint your house while you are sleeping, you could better try painting yourself. But what if you could do something else? Something you like and you can get paid for? Maybe you are good in webdesign or translations.

A couple of years ago, someone told me that you should only do what only you can do. I think that is a great thing to strive for. It is not an easy thing since you will always be tempted to do things you should not do. The same thing counts at work. Everyone has his own strenghts and you should focus on those.

So my advice is to do what you love to do and delegate what you don’t like.

Some reading tips about this topic:
What Tasks Should You Delegate First? – Michael Hyatt (blogpost)
How to Avoid Doing Everyone Else’s Job. – Craig Jarrow (blogpost)

Concentration, concentration, concentration.

How many times it happens you are reading something and after a couple of minutes you’re wondering what you were reading? I guess it won’t only happen when reading but also while talking to someone and even when driving your car!

I have to be honest that it happens a lot to me. Sometimes I have to re-read the same sentence twice because my mind was taking me to another place. It is strange, like my mind wants to go one and I am not ready for it. After a while, you notice that you are in another atmosphere and forgot everything of the last couple of minutes. I’m often wondering whether I am the only one who has this ‘experience’? When I am talking to someone, is he or she also getting lost in thinking about other things or is it just me? It is not that I do not respect what the other person is saying, but my mind wants to take the next step. Even if I am not ready for it. Before moving on, I want to make one thing clear. There is an important difference between losing your concentration in a discussion and just not being interested. When someone is not interested, that person doesn’t even start listening. When you are interested, you listen but your mind does not take note of what is being said. Maybe the other person has said something so important that your brain already starts processing ideas about this topic.

Most of the time, you are not concentrated because you did not empty your brain before starting a new task. Your brain is made for creativity and not for remembering stuff. If you try to remember all sorts of stuff, you’ve got a higher chance of being less concentrated. That is why I jot down my ideas as fast as I can in services like Evernote and Omnifocus. When I think of a topic for a blogpost, I store it in Omnifocus. By doing so, my mind is free to discover other interesting topics and to live with more focus. Need to call a friend when arriving at home, store it in Omnifocus and let it remind you at home. Simple things with an amazing impact! But after all, give your mind a break. In the rushing time we live in, you need to make time to take a break.

What can you do about it?

  • Take a break whenever you can.

  • Read about concentration and focussing on what you are doing at this moment. I recommend blogs like Time Management Ninja by Craig Jarrow and Productivityist by Mike Vardy. Or read the book from David Allen about GTD, this goes beyond our topic but will help you in being more focussed.

  • Do the things you like and enjoy. Passion leads to focus.