How to be more Productive in your Biz
I am totally guilty of this. I wake up get my coffee and sit down to work and then I get side tracked by some email or reading the news and I go down a rabbit hole. It may even be business related i.e looking at my latest Brides gorgeous engagement shots she sent to me. Either way, I have wasted time and done not much of anything.
There is nothing better than walking away from your workday feeling accomplished and nothing is worse than walking away frazzled with what seems like more on your plate than when you started.
If you are a work at home gal like myself, it can be even harder to focus and be productive in your business. (Yeah you are thinking about that new episode on you hulu account or the laundry you could just “fold real quick”.)
Maybe are a stay at home mom also like me, and you cant seem to get it together for that quick one hour nap your baby might take.
If you already have a full time job and this is your side hustle, you are having to take advantage of that short time you have when you are home to work!
I find myself all the time wishing I had more hours in the day to work. But what are we doing with the hours we have to work? Are we accomplishing what we set out to accomplish? How can we keep our head in the game?
I am going to share some tips with you on how to be more productive with the time you have but first I’m gonna share some facts about productivity you may not know:
- Sunny days tend to make people less productive (great, I live in Florida!)
- Tuesday is the most productive day of the week
- Multitasking leads to as much as a 40% drop in productivity + increased stress (fellow mompreneurs, you hear this??)
- Adults who get between 7.5-9 hours of sleep can be up to 20% more productive
- It takes 30 days to get a physical or emotional habit in place
- The average worker sends 190 messages a day.
- If you took 1 hour each day, 7 days a week, 365 hours… in 3-5 years you would be an expert in the topic you chose to focus on.
These are crazy right?
The days do seem short when you are juggling being a parent, working full time, chores, errands, and all the daily things we have to tackle.
When we look back at our day, particularly the hours we are working we need to ask ourselves: Were we BUSY or Productive? Busy does not make us profitable or effective.
SO here are my tips for being more productive in our business:
Turn off the email. Your email is not your to-do list, ya here that? Most people check their email as soon as they wake up in the morning, to catch all those emails that apparently came in after we laid our head on our pillow. If you have ever read “ The 4-Hour Workweek” The author says people waste so much time in their inbox. Save emails for later and get done what you need to accomplish and set aside time in the evening when the emails have stopped coming to tackle the highly important ones. Some distractions are unavoidable, kids, the doorbell, or client calls. So close the ALL the tabs on your browsers, turn your silencer for emails and messages off so you aren’t tempted to get sidetracked.
What does your workspace look like? Is it the dining room table littered with baby food, cold coffee and random other items that don’t belong? If you work at home, try to find yourself a quiet place to work. Make it where you come everyday to tackle your tasks. If you have an office, make sure it is organized and not cluttered with things that can make you distracted.
Take REAL breaks
Seems counterproductive doesn’t it? But actually studies show that working 52 minutes and then taking a 17-minute break actually helps us stay more focused. Its called the Stop + Go Workflow (reader’s digest)
I love this tip. Are you behind on your wedding blog? Perhaps you have some wedding timelines to hash out? So batch working is taking your focus to one specific task for that hour/day. For instance, if you have to write on your wedding blog, go ahead and do the entire next week’s blog posts. This is more effective than switching back and forth between tasks that redirect your focus. Instead of meeting with clients all through the week, try to block your time for client meetings on Thursdays. If you have calls to make, make all those calls at once instead of throughout the day. This can really be time efficient as well since you aren’t sitting down each day to do podcasters love batch working. Sitting down to write and record their podcasts once a month versus twice a week.
This is so important. When you sit down to write your To-Do list, how long is it? Does it look like Santa’s toy list? I bet it does. This may seem like a great idea to list everything you need to do but in fact, it overwhelms us and when we don’t finish it all (because its near impossible) we feel like we have accomplished nothing. So instead, write down your top three things that you need to get done that day and focus on those tasks.
Enforce your own rules
Make sure you stick by the work rules you give yourself. Whether that’s taking our advice and not opening your emails, batch-working your days, or setting your top three. Stick by this. Remember, it takes 30 days to create an effective habit!
Sometimes its near impossible to do everything ourselves even if you are a control freak, Type A. If you run a business, delegate tasks to those who work for you. Take things off your plate that can be done by someone else. Errands, phone calls, or return emails so you can focus on meeting with clients, directing rehearsals, or whatever is most important for your work week. If you are running a solo game like so many of us are, you can delegate other things that get in your way. Kids can do more than you think… have your kids pick up their own shoes and put in a basket, clean up the baby toys the little one left out, or make grab their own snacks. These seem little but they are what I call “time-suckers”. No kids? Yes, your husband knows how to do dishes! If you work for yourself, think about a virtual assistant, or VA, if this is in your budget. They can tackle all kinds of tasks, perhaps writing blogs, designing layouts, ordering flowers, etc.
My goal for you is that you can look at your own workflow and see what is holding you back form hitting your mark on productivity. Make some changes and see what happens! Increased productivity can have a major effect on your well-being and your business as a whole. It’s hard some days but hopefully with a plan in place, you can tackle your big three, without too many distractions, in a “Marie Kondo” like office!