Every 2 weeks we have a group coaching session with all of our clients. They can ask us questions about anything they’re struggling with, and we ensure that they take some time out to reflect on their top wins and are focused on the goals ahead.

In this clip, I shared some advice with them about how to choose what to focus on. This is a process I use in every aspect of my life to ensure I’m doing the right things to move forward.

This will help you distil the overwhelming pile to ‘things to do’ into what you actually have to do.

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Prefer to read rather than watch and listen? No problem – here’s everything I said in the video as text:

The Deselection Question

I’ll give you a very simple question to ask yourself and your team members when they are giving you their top focus. I use this. It’s a deselection question. And I use it, like, mental pretty much in every part of my life.

So when I am coming up with say my key goals and the ‘this is one thing I need to get done this week’, the question I will ask is, “If I don’t do it, then what’s the consequence? I don’t want to do it. Why should I do it? What will happen, what’s the consequence?”

And then if I can find a good consequence if I don’t do it and it’s really strategic yeah, I’ll do it, it’s on my list.

Are You Good At Saying “No?”

The point that I’m trying to make is that because you are the business owner and you’re in that mindset of rolling up your sleeves and getting on with things, you’re the doer and you’re the guy or the girl that makes it happen, it just becomes your second nature to just be on and on and on all the time on all the fronts.

But actually, if you want to focus on the right things, one of the key skills, and I’m sure you’ve come across this in many books that you’ve read, is the fact that are you really good at saying ‘no’?

Because if you say ‘yes’ to something, what are you saying ‘no’ to?

You don’t have unlimited time in your diary, right? So if you’re saying ‘yes’ to something, what are you saying ‘no’ to?

Before You Commit

Personally, if I commit to something, that means I will see through it then there is no question. But before I commit I’m actually saying, if I don’t commit then what happens? And if there’s not much consequence then I’m like, “Yeah, I don’t wanna do it.” “Why should I do it?”

I would much rather have leisure time rather than fill my diary with something which doesn’t have much consequence.

Get Out Of The “I’ll Do This” Mindset

So, look, it’s a very simple management tool that I’m sharing with you right now, because you need to become good at deselecting activities so that you can really focus on the key strategic issues, rather than just saying, “I’ll do this, I’ll do this, I’ll do this, I’ll do this.”

And I’m reminding you, if something is important, then ask yourself a question saying, “Can someone else do it? Can I delegate it to someone else?” And if the answer is “No.” Then yes, do it. But if you can delegate then delegate because then it will release time for you to do something much more important than that, right?

So, again, it’s just how you think, what’s your natural way of thinking, is what you need to become really aware of.

Now when you talk about that these are my focuses for this week, ask the same question again; if I don’t do it what’s the consequence? And if you say, “Hmm, well it needs to be done in the business,” then say, “Can I delegate this to someone?” If the answer is yes, then identify who’s the person. If not, fine, your focus is there and you know exactly what you need to do this week.

So I’ll just give you ten seconds to just quickly check that and ask yourself this question looking at your big focus. And if it needs to change or needs to be deleted then please do it.