It’s busy running a business; there is a lot to get done. These are eight of the ways I keep on top of it all.
1. Set an intention for the day
Apparently when Peter Jackson was editing The Lord of The Rings his approach when deciding what to keep was to bring it back to the core of the film – Frodo’s journey. I tried applying that logic to my business and so far so good. As I wait for my computer to start I determine the one key thing that will be the primary focus of the day. For example when I sat down to work on Friday I knew I wanted two posts written, edited, designed and scheduled. I got distracted a couple of times but I still ended where I wanted to be.
2. Have a to do list
It’s a classic but it works. If I sit down at my desk with a vague idea of my day’s tasks I can be guaranteed to forget about the important job I had to get done that day until 4pm (not fun). So sit down and write yourself a list (I use a mix of my planner and dapulse) and then do those things.
3. Do the worst thing first thing
If I have something on my list that I don’t want to do I always try to do it first. If I don’t it can distract me all day. So get it done and then move onto the things that inspire you.
4. Be realistic about what you can achieve in a day
I am prone to overestimate what I can get done in a day and underestimate what I can achieve in a week. So I look at the week as a whole first and then come back to each day. If you can see where you need to be by Friday afternoon then you can be sure to set a realistic plan for the week. The other side of this is understanding how you work best. For example, if you are more creative in the morning you should try writing blog content then or if like me its best to get the admin done in the morning so you can focus in the afternoon then do that.
5. Set work hours
This was something my husband, a long-time entrepreneur, taught me. Decide how many hours a day you are going to work. Set a timer and pause it when you take breaks (I’m not talking a quick bathroom break, more taking 20 minutes to call your Mum). This way it doesn’t matter if I start work at 10am or take a 2hour lunch I know that I work similar length days. Also if I happen to work overtime one day I can take it out of the time for the next day.
6. Don’t force yourself to stay sitting at your desk all day
When I worked in an office I was constantly getting up to chat to people or to collect things from the printer. The same is not true from a home office. Now I could just add a few more cups of tea into my day but that was getting out of control. As I mentioned in a previous post I use Pomodoro’s to break up my day. Every time I’ve finished a Pomodoro I now stand up and move (sometimes I even go so far as to do a quick little yoga break or a dance break)
7. It’s still your job
A lot of people will tell you not to force it and there is merit in that but I also wanted to say that this is your job. Imagine you were your own manager and use that as a guide as to where the line is. So as much as entrepreneurs should take advantage of shaping our own day I do think we should approach the work day for what it really is a work day!
8. At the end of the day switch off
You deserve and need rest to be your best self in business. So make sure to take the time to switch off. Burnout will come much quicker if you are always working. Plus, I come up with great business ideas when I get some distance from my business ideas 🙂
So how do you keep on top of everything you need to do?