Owning your own business (or businesses) can be an overwhelming task. Managing your time well throughout your day can seem like a pipe dream; especially if something happens early on that derails your plans, causing a domino affect. Some days are like that and you just have to throw your hands up and laugh at yourself. Or cry. But preferably laugh.
There are, however, some strategies that can help you stay on track for a productive day. Creating a flow that promotes a work-life rhythm is essential to extracting the best from yourself.
I like to divide my day into sections, just because that’s how my brain thinks. This helps to break down my to-do list into manageable chunks. I look at my day like this:
I’m a homeschool mom of two that handles blogging and social media for multiple businesses, along with being active in the ministry life of our local church plant. My job revolves around my home and, while I’m sure my responsibilities look different from yours, I think the same principals can be applied. My goal here is to simply outline a block of time and show you how I fill it. This is very fluid and can easily be edited to your specific needs.
This is a sacred time for me. I prioritize my cup of coffee and an hour spent in personal development because it helps me to think through my priorities for the day. I read a book that challenges me and spend time thinking and dreaming. As a creative, giving myself time to do this is essential. Often this is the only opportunity in my day for quiet reflection.
Because of the way my day naturally flows I like to use mornings for managing social media, emails, looking over websites, etc. This usually gives me a guideline for what my afternoon needs to look like.
The afternoon can be so long, so I usually break it down even further.
Right after lunch. This is often when my blogging happens. My distractions diminish a bit as lunch ends and my girls are occupied with their own interests so I’m able to focus brain cells in one direction. This is often the most productive time of my day so I do my best to knock out as much as possible.
Mid-Afternoon. After a good chunk of focused time has elapsed and the natives…er….children are getting restless my day starts to shift once again. I’m wrapping up projects and looking towards evening plans/responsibilities, dinner prep, etc. This is a good time for me to begin disengaging my brain from work mode back into family life.
Late Afternoon. I love this part of my day because this is when I have all my projects wrapped up and I high tail it to the gym for an hour of decompression. Three days a week I meet two very dear friends and we laugh, joke, and process our challenges together. When I’m working out alone I use that time to catch up on my favorite podcasts. I can’t stress enough the importance of having a routine that allows you to get some exercise and get out of your own head space to engage with other people.
This is when the magic happens. This is when I get to enjoy the fruits of my labor. This is when I am reminded why I have a strategy to my day. This is when I get to eat dinner with my husband and two precious girls and relax. I’m trying to apply the discipline of turning off my phone and completely disengaging from the world, but I’m not super great at that. I do, however, try to give my full attention whenever possible during the evening.
Having a strategy for my day helps me to be more efficient with my time. It also helps give me boundaries because, let’s face it, being a small business owner can take over my life if I let it.
I hope this helps as you think through how to plan your day. I love to hear feedback and ideas, so feel free to share!
Lindsey is wife to Caleb and Mama to their two daughters. She has worked in administration and marketing alongside Caleb in other businesses and is excited to be a part of the Sweet Feeders team. When she’s not being a wife and mom she can be found with a cup of coffee writing on her laptop, reading a good book, or working out at the gym.