Negative thoughts come all too easily in these uncertain times, but changing the way you think could change the way your business operates – for the better
Has lockdown got you worrying about the fate of your business night and day? That’s understandable. But changing the way you think about the current situation could just alter the way your business operates during it, too. Here are five ways to change your business mindset and boost your productivity during COVID-19.
Choose your words wisely
The way we feel informs the language we use, but the reverse is also true. When we speak, the words we use impact out mindset – and that goes for both the conversations we have with others and our own internal monologues.
Words prime you to respond in different ways, so think about the expressions that are best for your business. “I’m worried my business can’t survive this pandemic” can be replaced with, “This pandemic is a challenge we haven’t faced before, and we’ll need to work hard to overcome it.” The facts are the same, but the way it is being expressed invites a very different reaction: one that’s defeatist and one that’s productive.
Choose what advice you listen to
It was motivational speaker Jim Rohn who said, “You’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
Right now, we have limited control over who we share our space with, but you can control who you let influence your thoughts. Make the effort to allow positive voices into your sphere, whether that’s through podcasts, social media, motivational reading or advice from friends and family.
Seeking out inspiration is key right now, when the urge to give up or slow down can be overwhelming. Surrounding yourself with positive influences can give you the drive to power your business forwards.
Having said that, just be careful that those positive voices are also pragmatic. There needs to be a solid grounding in reality and an understanding of what is realistic in these times.
Focus on what you can control
There’s not a lot we can control right now. You can’t control how long working restrictions will last, and you can’t control when things will return to something resembling normality, but there are still things you can control, and these are the factors you should be focussing on.
Your relationship with your clients might have changed, but there still might be ways you can keep that relationship strong. Is there an email you can send? An idea you can suggest? A meeting you can prepare or files you can organise to stand you in good stead once this is all over?
Try and prove your doubts wrong
Take your doubts as challenges, not facts. If you find yourself thinking about how much time you’re probably going to waste today, then make it your mission to be as productive as possible. If you find yourself thinking about how your customers probably don’t want to hear from you, try sending out a sensitive message asking how everyone is doing, and watch the support role in.
It’s a bit like going to a party – you know, that thing we used to do a few months ago? Before you went, you’d be thinking of every reason possible not to attend. Cut to a few hours later, and you’re having a really great time.
Consider how others are coping
It’s easy to get stuck inside your own head when you’re working remotely and worrying about your business’s future, but one of the best ways to remedy this is to reach out to others. As an employer, you’ll need to shoulder the responsibility of making sure your staff are coping during this crisis too, and that means checking in regularly, being flexible and lending a hand whenever possible. By concentrating on supporting others within your business, you’ll probably find that your own sense of purpose and productivity benefits too.