Key Stress Management Strategy for More Energy and Motivation in the Workplace: The List of Six
Increase your energy and motivation in the workplace. Decrease your stress by using this simple and effective tool: Daily List of Six. It's one of the daily planning techniques I share with overwhelmed leaders all the time. I also talk about it in this podcast episode, How to Get Out Of Overwhelm and in my eBook: 120 Mind, Body & Spirit - Stress Management Strategies and Daily Tips for Professionals.
What Is The List of Six?
List of Six is a day-to-day type of goal setting that is very simple.
I've been using it for many years. It involves taking five minutes
every evening, before the day ends, to write down the top six things you ABSOLUTELY will do the next day.
ONLY SIX things.
Limiting your list to six items forces you to focus on, and prioritize,
what's most important for the next day. You will probably get much
more than six things completed, but your List of Six is only the top six
things That HAVE to happen the next day.
Here's An Example from One of My Own Lists of Six
To Recap - Your List of Six Should Only Include:
1. What HAS TO HAPPEN the next day
2. Should represent what you are WILLING TO COMMIT TO the next day.
you've created your List of Six, place it where you see it the first
thing in the morning and can easily see, all throughout the day.
To get more specifics about how I use the List of Six to keep my days sane, and to keep my own energy and motivation in the workplace strong, check out additional List of Six Suzie Notes, below.
Five Common-Sense Reasons Why The List of Six Helps You Gain More Energy and Motivation In The Workplace:
- 1. You Get to Play Off Of, 'Take the Bounce‟ and 'Catch the Wave' of the Momentum from the Day Before.
We all get into rhythms in our work, and sometimes it takes all day to get that good rhythm going. Using that 'good' energy before you leave for the day, helps you leverage it and keeps you from starting 'cold' in the morning.
"Envisioning the end is enough to put the means in motion."
- 2. Pre-planning, Seeing in Advance, Visualizing & Intending are
Powerful Success 'Secrets' of Many Athletes, Mega-Stars and Corporate
Successes. Taking time to visualize and 'line up' with what you want before you take action greatly increases the possibility of success.
Here's a simple everyday example where you usually plan what you're going to do, in advance, that works out really well every day:
When you get in your car, you tend to know where you‟re going and how
you‟re going to get there, don't you? When you know where you're going,
you‟re going to have a much better drive and get there faster than when you‟re just riding around, aimless and a little lost, right?
- 3. It's Empowering to Think About what‟s Most Important to You, and To Plan for It In Advance.
you plan, you're not a victim to the whims of everyone else. Yeah,
emergencies will come up. You'll probably get projects from 'out-of-nowhere' the
next day, BUT with a plan YOU at least know what's most important to you
and to your work. And that's empowering. You can't feel empowered and overwhelmed at the same time. Do the things (like the List of Six) that lead to more feelings of empowerment and you'll find, feel and live more motivation in the workplace.
"The first step toward creating an improved future is developing the ability to envision it."
- 4. Daily Planning is Do-able.
We've all heard of, and know
about goal setting, but not many of us are very good at it. For example
out of the thousands of Leaders and Sales Pros who've taken the Re-Calibrate Daily Habit Quiz, 80% or so rate themselves as “not very good” at setting goals.
believe so many of us stink at goal-setting because it seems like we
'should be' setting these huge goals that sound awesome and interesting. But sometimes those kind of goals, if we're honest with ourselves,
don't feel possible or real. So we don't 'do goal setting' even though EVERYONE
tells us how important it is! But planning for the next day - that's taking things in small focused 'chunks; and it is do-able!
- 5. It Sets You Up for Success and Helps You Feel LESS Stress and MORE Ease.
Once you have your plan for the next day in place, you can go home feeling a greater sense of ease. And,
without even realizing it, you've subconsciously set yourself up to be
primed and ready for the next day. And then, before you know it, you're Waking
Up a little more Eager, and more certain the day's going to be a good
one. (And that's how you create a Wake Up Eager Leader Life! One day at a time...)
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for.
And the most you can do is live inside that hope.
Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under its roof."
More Energy and More Motivation in the Workplace...
Chances are that there have been days when you have had a clear plan for the day, in advance. And when you did, did you notice how different your day went? Instead of feeling frustrated at the end of the day, because you wasted hours wading through your inbox and voicemail trying to figure out where to start, when you planned your day in advance I'm sure you found that you were more focused, self-directed, productive, full of purpose, and primed for anything.
Self-planned days, thought about in advance, just go better and feel so much better. Feeling better naturally leads to more energy and motivation in the workplace! Instead of planning in advance sometimes, I you want to get into the simple habit of planning every day, in advance. In my Daily Tips eBook and emails we cover this area over an entire week of Tips and we use this Mantra:
“I take time to think about, in advance, what I want to accomplish on a daily basis.”
What do YOU want to accomplish tomorrow? Think about it now and create your own List of Six.
Suzie's Side Notes: "More on How I Use The List of Six..."
Here's more detail on how I use this tool to create less stress and more motivation in the workplace:
- My first two items on my List of Six every day are: #1: TNT - my Tune In Time, and #2: whatever my workout is going to be that day. They are on my List first every day because I am very clear that they are important and because they really matter to my well-being. To be completely honest with you, 95% of the time I do my Tune In Time; my workouts, well, I do them probably 75% of the time.
- Next, I only list what HAS to and WILL happen this day. Only the things that I KNOW that I am both willing and capable of completing.
- My list is nothing fancy, and isn't actually all that impressive, is it? But it works! Like you, I have a TON of things that are calling my attention, BUT we can all only get so much done in a day.
- Creating a List of Six every day FORCES me to spend my time on what matters most. It has also helped me to be much more realistic about what I commit to, and what I actually want to do. I don't over schedule myself any more - and that makes a big difference on my own energy levels and motivation in the workplace. (It also helps me manage one of my DISC Style Blindspots - taking on too much!)
What questions do you have about the List of Six and increasing your own motivation in the workplace? Contact me, post them here in the Facebook comments or share anonymously via our Talk Back Forum
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