So you’ve decided you want to be a business owner?
Or perhaps you’re already a business owner and you want to reclaim your sanity?
First of all, I want to wish you all the luck in the world, it sure is a rollercoaster ride. It is more than worth it to have the laptop lifestyle you’ve always dreamed of.
I wanted to offer you my top tips to ensure you keep your sanity intact and have the best possible chance for success.
Have a routine
This is your best friend! Running your own business can be hard and motivating yourself can be difficult. By creating a routine you will have the habits in place to get on with the work you need to without thinking about it.
I love having themed days, so for each day of the week, I have a set deep work task to do. By having these themed days you know exactly what you’re doing each day.
Having a set time to start and finish works well too. I don’t even look at my emails until I have got my daughter to school, that way I am completely present in getting her ready to school and she had my full attention. Also have you ever tried to write an email when your child is asking you a million questions in one minute?! It’s a recipe for disaster!
Using checklists makes your life so much easier. I have them for my daily tasks (shallow work), weekly tasks and even my shopping list! By having a list to go to for a resource you’ll feel more in control and less overwhelmed.
They don’t have to be super comprehensive just simple and concise.
I have things like post to Instagram, check my emails, interact on social media and things like that. At first, you will use the checklist daily and before you know it, it’ll become second nature.
You can use it to reference to if you are training staff in the future so that they know what to expect to be done on a daily basis.
I have created systems in my business for every task that happens and if I couldn’t work someone else could follow my processes and procedures to get it done.
Yes, this might seem a bit of a strange suggestion for someone wanting to build an online business. However, there is no point having the freedom of a laptop lifestyle if you are always stuck on your laptop!
Make sure you get some time away from the online world every day. Whether it be to hangout with friends, go for a walk or head to the gym it will do the world of good to have some free time.
Use tools to help
There are several tools you can use to ensure your business runs on autopilot as much as possible. I wanted to suggest that you use Calendly to book in client calls and consultations so that you can run your schedule with minimal fuss.
I am also a raving fan of Buffer, it takes care of my social media for me!
Optimise your Check-ins
This probably was one of my biggest time savers. I used to constantly be online to answer messages and emails as soon as they came in. Whilst you may feel productive you’re actually not, it’s the complete opposite in fact.
You are being a slave to your notifications, so turn them off on your phone and laptop so that you only check-in when YOU actually want to. If you are super brave take the social media apps off your phone (except Instagram obviously) you then won’t be on your phone all the time.
I have 3 times per day where I check and deal with emails at a time that suits me. I also do the same with social media, I make time to go online with purpose so I don’t spend hours aimlessly flicking through my newsfeed.
I get in and out as quickly as possible. I make sure my auto responder advises people of this so they know if it is urgent to call me.
Use Techniques to Aid Productivity
I mainly use 2 techniques which keep me super focused and productive. They are called ‘time blocking’ and ‘pomodoro so for everything I do I schedule in time blocks of 30-90 minute intervals to do a set task but use the Pomodoro timer to do focused work for 25 minutes with a 5-minute break or 90 minutes work and a 20-minute break.
By using these techniques I can work quickly and efficiently and know that I can have a short break coming soon.
You can use an app on your phone or a simple kitchen timer, just remember to turn your phone to aeroplane mode so you don’t get disturbed.
If you want to achieve anything it must be scheduled in. This isn’t just for your work, it covers fun time, me time, mother and daughter time and even date night!
By ditching your to-do list and opting for scheduling your tasks in, you will know whether you have time to do them or not realistically.
Think of things like appointments, you wouldn’t skip a doctor’s appointment or cancel on your boss so be as disciplined with your scheduling.
Simplify Your Life
If you can make your life easier why wouldn’t you?
There are several ways you can do to create time in your day, freeing you up to do more of what you love not to mention earn more money.
Have you heard about working in your genius? It’s a bit like that and only you can decide how you can do it.
For me I like to have a clean house but don’t want to waste time cleaning, I have a cleaner that is £10 an hour, if I make double that per hour it’s a perfect option.
If you HATE blogging but know that is a necessary evil for your business, it’s the ideal task to outsource right? If you love video then do that and get it transcribed and made into a blog for you! It’s your words you just don’t have to write them!
By outsourcing these activities which are not your genius you can spend time doing more of what you’re good at and make more money in the process.
Keeping Your Sanity
As you can see there is a theme throughout the blog about being a successful entrepreneur and it means good planning.
All of the tips I have given you are to do with managing yourself to get the best out of your time.
To create freedom in your life this requires careful planning, consistency and discipline. This lifestyle isn’t for everyone, I love it and it suits me to the ground.
Whereas some people like to clock in and clock out, have someone else set their goals and follow someone else’s rules. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this at all, it’s finding what is best for you and your life.
If you would like some help to systemise your business so that you can make the best out of your time email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to try our course on social media systemisation we have some spots available in the new year.