We all get the same hours, minutes, and seconds in a day (86,400 seconds to be exact). Studies show that we waste an average of 55 hours a week doing mindless things. Times have changed, and it has effected our productivity. The keys to a successful business can be found in creating time management to achieve your goals.
We spend countless hours “interacting” on social networks, but lack actual social skills. There are countless paradoxical ways that we waste time when we should be more productive. Personally, I am socially awkward and have no problem admitting that, but that’s why I am now a member of my local toast masters club, not sitting in front of a computer screen.
I am not surprised by the amount of time wasted by people who lack time management skills. However, I like my days scheduled out, and it has been that way for quite some time.
That is my past Monday schedule, outside of going to spin class because I was in Houston, that was my day. I also attended Startup Grind event at Techranch ATX from 6-9. Normally from 11am to around 3pm, I am working on various store platforms, ICB Original, ICB Etsy, ICB Consults. Or, I could be out thrifting for new pieces to simply go into my creative zone, or writing the ebooks I am launching very soon. When Imperfect Concepts turned 2, a schedule came into place. It has simplified my life.
I know what you’re thinking: uuuummm lady you are doing this full time and I am a 9to5er. Yes, this I know that. I am very blessed to be doing ICB how I want it done, but here are some tips for my 9to5ers and mommies trying to break into running a business full-time.
Wake Up earlier or Stay Up Later
If you have to be in your office at a set time, you need to commit to wake up earlier or stay up later. Work through your lunch break on your personal brand. There is no excuse. There is time in the day to focus on your dream, even if you have to cut back on your favorite shows or social media outlets to do it. They will still be there when you get done. Warning: social media can be the biggest time waster.
Buy an agenda or use the one on your smart phone. Put everything on your calendar, and set reminders. Use a color coding system to help you out. For example, anything in pink on my calendar denotes Imperfect Concepts, green means there are bills to pay, blue is for doctor’s appointments, and purple means ICB Consults. Heidi Klum says she has color coded pens or paper to break down her and her kid’s life. Break your life down and make it work.
Do Not Disturb
After you decide to wake up early or stay up late, you need commandeer the rule: “DO NOT DISTURB”. You have to be fully committed to the time slot you selected to work on your company. Create a little space in your home that you will work in, so you wont be disturbed or tempted to do other things. Leave your cell phone on silent or place it in another room. Remove all distractions so you work better, but make sure the area you choose is not your bed. You will get too comfortable and less productive.
Create A To-Do List
First, please don’t become the queen of the to-do list that is never completed. Make a weekly to-do list of no more than 15 things you want to complete. Make the list on Sunday night and remember, NO MORE than 15 major things can go on it. Then, break those tasks down into the other days of the week. Take two or three a days to accomplish each task. Your daily to-do list should help break down your weekly goal list. Nicole Richie says she loves marking off the items on her to-do list. Gives her a thrill, and it does the same for me. Reward yourself if you complete all of the tasks.
Journal it Out
You are probably thinking that you are too dang old to keep a journal but you’re not. Get to writing or talking (video journal), and it will help you see your projects. Write about how each day turned out, and later you can reflect back on how things developed. You can see if you were distracted or remained focus. This gives you a way to look back and connect the dots. Time’s front windshield is dirty, but your review clarifies and cleans off the mud.
Its okay if your life is imperfectly balanced. Heck, Beyonce says her time management is horrible. If you can get some type of schedule down, it will help you tremendously, I promise. Just put the effort in and start one step at a time. What is your schedule like? Are you finding balance in your life?