How to get time back into your work day

Get time back into your work day

Do you feel like there is never enough time in the day to fit it all in?  Do you remember why you wanted to go into business for yourself in the first place? I do…it was so that I can still be fulfilled in the work sense whilst being able to provide for my family along with being there for my kids during their school years. Currently they are in primary school with one starting high school next year (eek!) and once they are both at high school, there will be even more time for me to expand my work hours.

I’ve said it on my Facebook page before and I’ll repeat it here…as small business owners, mums & dads, husbands & wives….we wear many hats! Today’s blog article is sharing some of my time saver tips (check out these tips that are posted to my Facebook page on #timesaverThursday) that I use to help me manage my time and be organised…and this in turn helps me focus my work days.

Time saving tips for working at home

When you work from home, a big misconception is that you are available whenever your friends want to drop by or catch up or that you ‘not really working’ (they may all think you are binge watching TV!).

So here are five of my key time saving tips to help you each and every day:

Tip #1 – Be Easy On Yourself

The first tip is most definitely what I see as the most critical…go easy on yourself and realise you cannot do it all!  Some days my house looks like a bombs hit it and that’s ok by me!  And other days I flip out at all the mess as I like things to be neat and tidy….it helps me function. Whatever it is in your life, be it business or personal….some days you cannot do it all and you must be easy on yourself.

And because of this I recommend at the beginning of each year be it writing in your diary, adding it to your calendar or whatever method you use to schedule your day – all the public holidays, school holidays and any planned holidays – this enables you to not take on work during that period when you are working with clients.

Tip #2 – Evening Meals

Jos meal plan board featuring weekly mealsThis is a big one for me! Given I really dislike cooking so much, I definitely take 10 minutes on a Sunday evening and review my fridge, freezer and pantry to meal plan and then write it on the whiteboard on the pantry door.  It then frees up so much time during the week for me by not having to think and then organise and shop (if you don’t have all the ingredients) for the dinner meals. This also saves the kids asking me multiple days a day ‘what’s for dinner?’ (keep an eye on my Facebook page for this #timesaverThursday) as I also share some other tips that help me.  Unless it’s a meal in the slow cooker or the Sunday roast, I always aim for meals that I can cook in less than 30 minutes.

I purchased a family planner board from Kmart that I attached to my pantry door (and sits alongside my family planner calendar) that I write all the meals for the week on.  It’s then easy to reuse as I just wipe it over to clear it and start again!

Tip #3 – Make Lists

LISTS…I love making lists about what I have to do for that day or week. Take the time (for me it is a Sunday evening) to review what’s on for the week…whether it be personal, family or work related.  When do you function the best?  Mornings, evenings, middle of the day?  This is the time to create your list for any tasks that you need to action tomorrow or for the week / month ahead.  Bonus tip – I use a family planner AND my phone to record all appointments, meetings or block out time in my day to get stuff done!

Tip #4 – Schedule Admin/Social Media Times

My work is not just about helping businesses with the tasks that they don’t have time to complete, don’t want to do or just need some assistance with.  For my business to succeed there is also a lot of tasks that I consider admin that I also have to do.

So be sure to schedule time during your working week to have an admin type day – this is when you could send out invoices, check accounts that have been paid, research, create and schedule social media posts, marketing, network, undertake online training, listen to podcasts, webinars…whatever it is that you need to do, schedule time.

This is just as important as doing the work that keeps your business ticking over. Now this time could be one whole day or a half day or even 1 hour each day, but however you choose to allocate the time, be sure you do…you will thank me when the weekend roles around and you are not spending the whole day “catching up”!!

Tip #5 – Turn off the Distractions

You work from home – do you have a dedicated office area? Or do you sit at the dining room table or in the lounge room to work?  Whatever it is, I highly recommend turning off any distractions like the television.  Get the washing done before you start your ‘work day’.  Even during your work day, allocate time to answer emails or social media. It is so easy to be sucked in to just catching up on one episode, doing one load of washing and checking social media that before you know it a few hours has passed and you’ve achieved nothing on that to do list.

I do enjoy having the radio on as background noise….and funnily enough I actually don’t hear the talking that occurs on the radio…just the songs!  And then I am sometimes singing along to a song or five!

So there you have it…some of the tips that help me stay organised and on top of things both in my business and home life. I hope you’ve gotten some great tips from me to help you with getting time back on your side.

Be sure to check out some of these tips and others on Facebook #timesaverThursday or post a comment below and share your tips with me…I love learning new ways to do things and that make my day easier!

Until next time 🙂

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