Deadlines: An entrepreneur's best friend

For a one-man show, my business has a lot going on. At any given moment you can find me:

Not to mention, at least one call or meeting each day … plus, tackling all the boring-but-necessary operational tasks that keep this ship on the straight and narrow.

Simply scheduling time on my calendar to get it all done isn’t enough. In fact, that approach can do more harm than good: It’s been the source of paralyzing overwhelm and anxiety. Can you imagine how dreadful it is attempting to figure out how to get it all of the above done without losing your mind?

My saving grace is deadlines.

They provide my business with the structure it needs to make sure projects, products and services are delivered on time and under budget. Deadlines also provide me with a built-in hierarchy so I can prioritize my focus on one thing at once — the most urgent deliverable — instead of wasting time trying to figure out what I should work on now and next.

This is especially important if you work for yourself or are angling for more autonomy at your office job. Entrepreneurs usually answer to themselves internally, which isn’t always so lovely when procrastination places a stronghold on your productivity. And even if you’re a part of a corporate or startup organization, to say you hate feeling micromanged is a massive understatement. Self-imposed deadlines can go a long way to lifting that burden.

Now, pardon me… {checks production schedule} …I’ve got a master class to design. Wouldn’t want me to miss a deadline, right?