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How to Simplify the Execution Process in 5 STEPS (with free printable guide)

Updated: 4 days ago


Overview

The purpose of this guide is to share with you, practical steps for getting what you want; once you have identified it. This guide will therefore be most useful if you have already identified what you want.

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Introduction

The execution process is sometimes challenging; even more so when we are doing something new. We need to learn, adjust and act all at once. Not to mention that our schedule may already be packed. Sometimes we know what we want to do, and we have even started doing it. But, for some reason, we don’t feel like we are getting anywhere. We then lose motivation and stop. We may start again and stop again. And the cycle may continue until we realise that it is not that we are not doing enough (we are probably doing way too much!), we are just not doing enough of the things that are required for goal achievement. I have a great interest in helping people to get what they want because living is an active process and we feel better when we are doing what we truly want to do. My desire is that this guide helps you to realise your vision.



Let's get right into it!


Preliminary Step – Determine What You Want

The first step in getting what you want is the identification of what you want. As simple as this may appear, not everyone finds this task easy. Identifying what you want is a more personal process than the execution process, and the insights that I have gained through my experience are not included in this guide. Therefore, I have referenced two of my previously published articles to assist you with this process:



So, I’m an adult. Now what?


4 Questions to Ask Yourself in Early Adulthood


The titles of these articles may appear age specific. However, anyone who is focusing on personal growth may benefit from the insights, as personal growth is an individual process, and everyone does not get to the same point at the same life stage.


STEP 1 – Preparation Phase

Relative to what you want, you may need to do research, change location, learn new skills, make some purchases, get a mentor, among other things which may apply to your aspiration. You may realise that you need more things as you get further into the execution process. This is the step at which you start getting what you need - at least what you need to start. Note also, that sometimes you already have what you need. Look around you and be resourceful. Start with what you have, as long as it can get the job done. Obtain advanced tools as you go.


STEP 2 – Learning Phase

I also call this the incubation period. In any new endeavour, you will have some learning to do. If you want to be efficient, I suggest that you dedicate time for learning before you do any major work on your project. We learn as we grow, and some activities are more hands-on than others. Be guided by what is necessary in each situation. In many cases, learning is simply part of the major execution process, and you will automatically learn as you execute. However, the dedication of a time period which is specifically ascribed to learning, will allow you the time and space to adjust to your new activity and to ensure that you are comfortable with your new process. You want to be comfortable with what you are doing. This will make the process easier to endure. I have found that there tends to be more confusion in a process when this phase is skipped.


The way in which we do things is a direct result of the way that we learn to do things. So, if we do not allow ourselves the space and time to become familiar with a new task (without a focus on the end goal), we could make unnecessary mistakes. In addition, the way that we have previously learnt to do something is not necessarily the most efficient way for us to do it. You may start a project with a firm idea about how things are done in the respective area, and what you know may add value to the process. However, it may not include the full picture, especially when you factor in your unique way of doing things. In step 3, I note the importance of developing your system according to what works best for you. The learning phase provides clarity on that. 


Learning is a continuous process. So, you will learn and improve as you go. This phase allows you to master the fundamentals before you execute in any major way. And even if you end up moving on before you master the fundamentals, you will likely act with the clarity that is needed, when you first give yourself this time and space for learning. It removes potential confusion from the process as you are not just learning in terms of skill; you are also learning to pace yourself.


STEP 3 – System Development

Devise a system that includes an action plan. This will break down your daily steps in the most specific manner and will specify the time frame in which you will get tasks done. Be reasonable. Based on your starting tools, figure out the easiest and most sustainable route towards goal achievement. Note that the sustainable way is not necessarily the quickest way. Though your process can be both at the same time, easy (sustainable) does not necessarily mean fast; especially at the start. Keep your daily steps simple (if your frequency is not daily, be guided accordingly). The important thing is that you keep it simple. Do not try to run to the finish line. Break down your activities into manageable, bite-sized pieces which you feel are easy to do. This is important, especially at the start of a project, because your mind and body need time to adjust to your new activity. The easier you keep things, the easier your adjustment phase will be. You will gain momentum with time and effort. Pace yourself and feel free to make later adjustments to your system as you see fit. The key thing is that you remain in a state of balance throughout the entire execution process, as this will keep you going for the long term.



Here’s an example based on one of my systems:

Instagram Presence:

  • I go online for an hour in the morning and an hour in the evening. If you also have an online community, then you may notice that you need a different time frame based on your audience size and activity type. Your time allocation may also need to change with time. The specifics of your system could be unique to you for several reasons. I find that two hours per day works for me most of the time and I try my best to stick to it. I may need to increase this time as my community grows. When you allocate a time slot to a task, setting a timer can help you to stay within the time frame.

  • At the scheduled time, I go online, and the process is as summarised in the following table:



Table: My Process for Instagram Presence

Step Number

Activity

1

Publish post

2

Publish story (optional)

3

Respond to messages and take message-related action

4

Respond to post comments

5

*Check the stories of my focus group

6

Final check (on alerts that are received while I explore other areas)

7

**Go offline until next session


*It is not efficient for me to consume a lot of content when I am in creative mode. This is because I write from inspiration, and information overload can interfere with this process. However, I value collaboration and (genuine) human interaction, so I try not to work in isolation so far as this is feasible. As such, I have selected a small group of accounts which I call my focus group. This group contains people who I collaborate with and people within my niche who I deeply resonate with. This way, I support others in a balanced way, and this is helpful because supporting others is one of my personal values and the driving force behind Curate Your Journey. My process also helps me to maintain digital wellness.


**The process is the same for both sessions: morning and evening, and I take a full day off each week; unless there is something that I must do on the planned day off. 


The unexpected happens. So, I allow myself the room to switch things up when necessary. I have longer sessions when necessary, and I may change my work time on a given day for whatever reason. 


Working in defined time slots is helpful in keeping you focused and organised. However, your start time for a given activity does not have to be the same every day; unless you are performing a time-bound task. Allow yourself the space to fully integrate your lifestyle with the process, and to consider your present state of being at all times.


Your system could look as simple as the table above. You could add a checklist column to check off your tasks as you complete them. Make your process as simple as is practical for you. How your system looks will depend on the specifics of your tasks, the tools you use, and what works best for you. Some systems may appear more complex and multilayered; but your connection with them could make them simple at the core. This is a point to note. It is not about how your system looks. The benefit comes from the connection that you have with your system and how your system integrates with your lifestyle. Hence, I recommend that you take the required time to personalise your systems. Create systems that work for you and your unique life situation.


I have a completely different system for content creation, and it has been helpful to keep it separate because content creation starts with inspiration – I create based on insights that naturally flow to me. The first step is that I always have writing tools at hand! You can merge connected processes to create a more detailed system. There are many organisation tools such as apps which are available to assist with the establishment and simplification of processes. I mostly use pen and paper, and Microsoft office. Try your best to select what works best for you.


Do what is necessary to devise a system before you start a new activity in any major way. It can help with even the simplest of tasks. Devising a system can prevent a lot of hiccups in the execution process. It does so much more than gets a task done.


STEP 4 – Testing Phase

Assess where you are at in terms of skill, and test and learn how to use your tools. Make sure that you have mastered the fundamentals with respect to the required skills, tools and processes.


For example: if your goal requires that you learn a new skill, ensure that you have at least learned the basic requirement for mastering this skill - what is fundamental to do or to know. Focus on this first. This minimises the chance of you going back and forth, as when you start with the basics, you can build on that more easily than if you skip steps. Consider this as your firm foundation. Depending on your goal, this step may overlap with later action as you will become more skilled and gain greater clarity on the process(es) as you move along.


STEP 5 – Execution (The Fun Part!)

Consistently execute according to the system that you devised in Step 3. Here, you dive into the major part of the process. Take things one step at a time, one day at a time. Do not rush the process. It is better to consistently do an excellent job than to force yourself to do a whole lot in one day, only to end up making errors in some areas. It does not matter how many things you do if all your actions are inefficient. So, take it one step at a time, and give your very best to each day’s task. Your consistent effort, over time, will compound to bring you massive results.


Track your progress and be mindful. This will help you to see how you are progressing and give you an indication if there's something that you need to change.


Trust your system but don't follow it blindly. Reflect on your progress at different intervals and try to understand what your results/statistics are telling you. If you are fine with how things look, great. If you think an adjustment will improve your system, go right ahead and make it.


Give yourself reasonable time to see great results. Though your plan may sometimes need an adjustment, other times it may be working just fine, and you just need to exercise patience and be consistent.



A Reminder

Use this reminder to keep yourself grounded throughout the process.


Sometimes we start a project with a firm idea about how it will progress. But guess what? Life happens! Or we naturally gain more clarity on the process as we go. The unexpected happens. That's life, right? Events could require minor changes or necessitate major pivoting. Remember that this is alright. Though you try your best to avoid the unexpected (or the effects of it), anticipate it before you even start your project.


Unexpected changes can play on the emotions. But a shift in perspective or a change to your system could lead to a significantly more effective process than it would have otherwise been. In addition, at the start of doing something new, you will likely not have the clarity which will guide you to the finish line. This is normal. You gain clarity through consistent practice, learning and application. Your result is a composite of the whole experience.


I hope that these steps help you to get what you want. 


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101 CYJ STEP Guide 2023-1
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