Have you heard the acronym for systems: save yourself time, energy & money.
I shared this a few weeks ago and have gotten a ton of questions about what makes a system, how to create them and where to begin. In this episode I dive into the world of systems, starting with what you shouldn’t systemize. It’s a mistake many people make, creating systems for the sake of it.
In today’s episode I show you how to avoid this, and how you can create time, money and energy saving systems that will have a huge impact on your business, life and personal wellbeing.
I’ve written an article that accompanies this below, so be sure to listen, read (or both) to learn about the systems you need most in your life.
IN TODAY’S SHOW YOU WILL LEARN:
- About why this acronym for “Systems” plays such an important role in choosing which systems will best serve you (and your business)
- The two biggest issues most people have when trying to add a system into their life or workflow
- The two types of podcast listeners there are, and why it’s important YOU need to become the latter
- The 3 questions you should ask yourself before you even think about creating a new system
- How to perform a Time Audit, and how this helps you decide which systems you need to prioritize
- How prioritization DOES NOT save you time, and the 3 steps you can take to ensure you don’t mispritoize your actions
- Some of the core systems I personally use (and how you can build your own to save you time, energy and money)
- The one question you must always return to (this one question will make sure you never waste time, money or your energy again)
If I offered you something that would save you time, energy and money you would take me up on it, right?
But surely, no such offer exists…
Something that saves you time? Energy? MONEY?!
It can’t be true. Except, it is. In fact, there is something you already have in your life that saves you all three of these huge resources… SYSTEMS!
You may not be aware of it, but you have many systems in your life. You may also associate them with work, but you bring systems into your own routines and home. You likely have a system for getting ready in the morning, and may have a system for your weekly groceries.
Everyone has them, but few people are conscious they do.
This creates two big problems:
- Where we need a system the most, we don’t have one
- The systems we do have are not effective or efficient enough
This is what happens when you don’t consciously create something. It tends to be ineffective, and you may use systems where you don’t need them (and not have a system where you need it the most).
Yet systems can be so easy to create, and the more you have the easier your life gets.
There’s even an acronym for systems I love: save yourself time, energy & money.
The Role Systems Play in Your Life…
If you find yourself struggling for time, constantly dashing from one task to another or feel like you’re wasting money in certain areas of your life… chances are you need more systems in your life.
They DO NOT have to be complicated.
In fact, simple systems often work best.
Having them makes a massive difference, which I can say through experience.
(more on my own story later)
But I didn’t know just how big of a problem ‘systems’ played in so many of my listeners lives. Yet when I mentioned that acronym above in episode 659, I received a lot of emails:=
- What are they and what do they look like?
- How can you create your own?
- How do you know which areas of your life need a system?
Reading these emails opened my eyes, and I remembered how I used to live my life before I consciously built systems into it (both at home and with my business).
I too felt stressed and overworked, and never felt in control of my day.
I knew I could do certain aspects better, but had no idea where to begin…
That’s why I’m writing this article. I want to show you how to create your own, but more importantly know how to decide which areas of your life need systems the most.
Because a problem a lot of people have is that they create systems for the sake of it.
They assume if they have them everywhere, it will make their life easier.
Not true. This is where we’ll begin: The 3 Questions To Ask Before You Even Think About Creating Systems
But if you’d like a full insight into systems and the role they play in my life, I encourage you to listen to the latest episode of the Primal Potential podcast in full.
The 3 Questions To Ask Before You Even Think About Creating Systems
Not everything needs a system.
A system needs to have a specific purpose that saves you time, energy and/or money (ideally at least two, or even better, all three).
If it doesn’t achieve this the system either isn’t needed or is broken.
So before you even think about adding systems into your work or life, ask these three questions:
- What is the major problem you are trying to solve?
- What’s draining you the most / what is repeatedly frustrating you?
- What do you want / need to be easier in your life?
What is the major problem you are trying to solve?
A system isn’t meant to feel good, but rather solve a problem. It needs to heal a pain, and the greater your pain the greater the need for a system. For instance, my inbox always used to cause me pain.
I found myself checking it throughout the day, and losing focus each time I did.
I knew it cost me time and energy, so I created a system to solve this (listen to the podcast episode that accompanies this article to learn more about this email system).
What’s draining you the most / what is repeatedly frustrating you?
Take a step back and think about those aspects of life you struggle to keep on top of. They drain you and frustrate you, and you do all you can to avoid them.
- Cleaning the house…
- Cleaning the car…
- Your own email inbox…
Recognize what’s consistently causing this pain.
What do you want / need to be easier in your life?
What feels broken? What do you have to do and is largely out of your control, but you know if you could fix it it would make a big difference.
- Getting the kids to school…
- Getting the kids to bed…
- Getting yourself ready in the morning…
- Your bookkeeping / paying your monthly bills…
If you find what’s broken, you find what needs a system.
So many people embrace a system only to wander off track after a few weeks. The reason this happens is because it didn’t solve a big enough pain.
There is no point in having a system for the sake of it. It has to have a purpose, and it has to solve a pain.
The Problem with Prioritization (and how to fix this)
This is another problem many people have, and it follows on from the above.
You now have a long list of new systems you would like to build. If you’re anything like me, you’ve opened a can of worms and you’re eager to make your life a whole lot more efficient.
But where to begin?
To help best prioritize your time, energy and money ask yourself three new questions:
- can it be eliminated?
- if not, can it be automated?
- if not, can it be delegated?
The first thing to consider is if you can eliminate the pain from your life altogether. I couldn’t eliminate my email problem, for instance, but I could eliminate the problem I had with it on my phone by deleting the app.
If something cannot be eliminated, ask yourself if you can automate it (even just part of the process).
I’ve been without a washer and dryer for months, and taking it to and from the cleaners has drained me. So I called them and asked if they did a delivery service. They did, and although it now costs me a little more money, it saves me a lot of time and energy.
Finally, if you cannot eliminate or automate it, can you delegate it?
- Can you assign it to someone on your team?
- Can you get one of your partners to do it?
- At home, can you get your other half to?
- Or maybe you can delegate it to the kids…?
If something passes through each of these questions and remains, this is what you should prioritize and build a system around.
2 Systems That Have Changed My Life
I go into more systems in more detail in the latest episode of the Primal Potential podcast. I encourage you to listen to get the full insight, but here’s an overview of 2 simple systems that have changed my life.
This is such a simple system, but one of the most effective. I start each day journaling, and it saves me time and energy because I begin my day with clarity.
I have to think about what I’m doing less throughout the day, all because I spent five minutes journaling.
I know I cannot control life, and I know there will be times I get stressed. I’ve built a system to preempt this by creating a list of questions to ask myself the moment I feel flustered.
- If I was who I wanted to be, is this how I would act?
- How could I act right now… what could I do differently?
- What if I saw things from the other person’s perspective in this moment?
I don’t remove stress from my life with these questions, but I ensure I move past it quickly when it arrives.
S.Y.S.T.E.M.S: save yourself time, energy & money.
We would all like to save more time, energy and money. At work and at home, we rarely seem to have enough of them. By creating the right systems you can make your life much easier.
After reading this, I hope you have a greater understanding of how to find the areas of your life that need systems the most.
I’ll leave you with one final question I often ask myself: does this system make my life easier?
If it does, I keep it (or find ways to improve it).
If not, I get rid of it — it doesn’t serve a purpose.
You need to find the systems that serve a purpose for you, and that relieves you of pain.
Thanks for reading. If you would like greater insight into SYSTEMS, please listen to the episode that accompanies this article in full — it goes into everything in greater detail, and offers several examples…
This process never ends, either.
I’m always searching for (and finding) new systems to add into my work and life.
And with me becoming a mom soon, I’m sure I’ll find many more systems to build 🙂
This is one of the areas we revisit often inside the 12 Weeks To Transformation. The wait list for next session is now open, and I encourage you to register your interest now because I’m unsure what the exact details will be.
Thanks again for listening and reading.