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I have battled with perfectionism my whole life. Whether in the my personal or professional life, I would consistently be disappointed with what I was working on because it was never perfect. I would set the perfection bar so high that no matter what I did, it would never be good enough. At the height of this perfectionism, I saw it bleeding into my interactions with others.

Not only did it show up in the moment, it also manifested itself in the trajectory of my career. This perfectionism is what I’ve come to realize now as my creative roadblock — what some people call analysis paralysis (or being stuck in your head). I would always tell myself and others that the last piece of work you produce should be the best thing you produce and although I believed it at the time, that was an incredibly unhealthy way to look at things. It ultimately led to me halting a lot of the personal projects I had been working on, and led to my creative block and burn out that lasted two years. …

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Bullet Journal is my key to success for accountability

Have you ever started the year with the best of intentions but seem to fall short a few weeks in? Are their habits you’ve wanted to establish or break for a long time but never seem to be able to stick the landing? Did that happen for you this year? If so, you are not alone. According to a study by Phillippa Lalla, it takes between 18 and 254 days to establish a habit. If time is any indication, you can see how the unpredictability of length as well as the length itself cause many people to fall short.

I have tried and failed to establish many new habits, not knowing why I regularly failed. The biggest of all — the desire to quit drinking. When I think of my strategy for implementing new habits, it always starts with the best of intentions. I feel incredible for holding myself accountable for a set number of days but almost always, something in my life happens that gets me off track. I create excuses to let the new habits fall by the wayside for another time. What I have come to realize after spending time researching ways in which to become more deliberate with my attempts, is that the framework in which you establish is what determines whether or not you are successful. …

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As I sit here in the anticipation of writing this post, I feel a level of anxiety thinking of how this post will force me to reminisce on the past not so distant. I used to use accomplishing tasks as a way to measure my success and to be frank, I likely still hold onto this measure in some ways. My identity was completely intertwined with this work and it lead me to an inflection point.

Everyone claims they are busy. It is oftentimes, the pre-script answer when you ask someone how they are. I’ve often done this myself many times when not asking how the weather is. Having a child has showed me the importance of slowing down and being present in conversations and interactions I have. It also helped me realize how infrequently I had been able to achieve this state. …

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One of the biggest challenges I have come across as a freelancer / now business owner is time. I always feel that there just aren’t enough hours in the day to accomplish all that I need / want to. I am sure that I am not alone with this. In my quest to work more efficiently and accomplish more in a day, I have found a few tips that I want to share to help you structure your day and maximize your productivity in the hours that you do work and in turn, decrease stress and accomplish more.

About

Preston Kanak

Dad, Creative Coach & Filmmaker // Proud Canadian living in the SF Bay Area. Love meeting new people over a coffee or beer. Married to @kfrost.

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