Last week I shared the 4 most common reasons creatives struggle with time management and this week I'm giving you the tips on how to combat those issues so let's jump right in:
They Over Book Themselves
One of the best tips I've used over the years is limiting my schedule to one social engagement and one business/networking engagement per week.
YES, per week!
Now, if you're someone who's used to having your social calendar filled up, this is gonna hurt a little but here's the thing ~ if you're serious about your goals and building your business, then this is a no-brainer.
How do you expect to make any traction in your work when you're spending the majority of your off time (when you could be working on your business) out and about?
They Get Sidetracked (aka Squirrel!)
I don't know any creative who doesn't get sidetracked. The trick is getting back on track ASAP.
There are a ton of ways to do this but here's the top 3 that have worked best for my clients:
+ Set a timer to limit how long you spend on one specific task. When the timer goes off, give yourself a short break before you start on the next task.
+ Disconnect from the internet when you're working (if you don't use it for work).
+ Chunk tasks so you stay focused on one thing for an extended period of time. We often get sidetracked when we jump into something else. For example, looking something up online or on FB. We log on and then 30 minutes later, we totally forget what we went on for in the first place!
They Don’t Know What to Focus on First
I'm a big fan of the Pareto Principle - simply put; 80% of your results come from 20% of what you actually do. So what does this mean when it comes to figuring out what to focus on?
Focus on getting results first.
If you're struggling to make money in your business, you should be spending the majority of time working to get clients.
If you're struggling to figure out what your business actually is (you're still in the trenches of figuring it out) you should spend the majority of time focusing on getting uber clear on what it is you actually do and who you help.
The other part of this is knowing what to work on first, second, third, etc.
If you've taken my Hello, Just Follow Through master class then you know what I'm talking about. We break down your goals into bite-sized manageable steps and then we put them in order of importance. This way you always know what's next on your plate.
They Underestimate How Long it Takes to Do Something
Ah ~ probably my favorite one of all just because I'm such a nerd about scheduling but the easiest way to fix this one is to start keeping track of how long things take you now.
For example, set the timer before you sit down to write your next blog post or film your next video. Keep that timer going all the way through until you've posted it. Meaning - make sure you're incorporating ALL the steps like creating graphics, editing, seo, etc.
This will help you schedule how long these tasks take you moving forward so you don't end up overbooking your day.
The biggest reason this is important is because if we just allot some time towards a task or even if we pad it to give ourselves a little buffer, that's how long it will take us.
However much time we're given to do something is often how long it will take us to do it.