“Jamie, how do you get it all done?”
Let’s talk time-blocking your schedule
It took me a long time, a lot of studying and a lot of trial & error to really figure out what system works for me to be able to get it all done. Time-blocking and chunking my time has proven incredibly effective for me to make sure that I get all the things done. What I’m going to share with you today is a bit of a secret! Typically, I only share this with my business ecosystem builder’s clients. However, since it is something that has been coming up over and over again, I would like to address it in this blog post.
What is time-blocking?
Time-blocking is an effective way to force yourself to get a really important task done within a specific amount of time. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend you read the book Atomic Habits by James Clear. It was a game changer for me in terms of understanding where my time was going and how I was spending my time and really just getting better about creating very good habits in my life.
When I work with somebody, one of the first things I ask them to do is to do a time study. During the time study, you don’t want to change anything because you’re logging your time. We analyze
- How much time is going where
- How much time is being spent on marketing, on sales, on strategy, on delivery
- How much time you are spending on taking care of yourself
- How much time you are spending with your family
- How much time you are spending on doing those things that you need to do that are part of being an adult who runs a business
Once you have a handle on where you’re spending your time, (you might be surprised that you are spending a lot more time on certain things than you had expected!). The next thing I like to do is to think about theming your days.
Theming your Days
One thing that I have done for myself that has made a huge difference is to theme my days. The reason why I like the idea of theming your days is because there isn’t a lot of gear switching. For most humans, switching gears is hard.
For example, going from coaching with a client to looking at the financials of the business. When you’re oscillating back and forth, you’re actually not really setting yourself up for success long-term. Every time you switch to a different task you’re doing, you are having to recalibrate your brain and get refocused on wherever that activity takes place inside your brain. When you go from doing finances to coaching someone, you are using different parts of your brain. That is why I suggest theming your days.
Let’s look at my schedule for example:
Monday is an internal day. 90% of the time is spent with my team by
- Looking at the books,
- Looking at the sales,
- Understanding the financials
- Looking at the marketing numbers for the month
- Looking at anything that we have going on
- Checking on who I need to follow up with from a sales perspective
From time to time, I will take some sales calls. I typically take those sales calls in the afternoon and I’ll also do personal development work (aka coaching calls with one of my coaches) on that day.
When you start theming your days, it can be hard to kind of upheaval your whole schedule if you have a schedule already for how you do things. You don’t have to do it as a whole day. You can simply say, I’m going to do this activity all morning and I’m going to do this activity all afternoon.
Tuesday is my calls day. I literally take calls all day. Call, after call, after call. That works really well for me but might not work well for you. Any leftover calls, get done on Thursday.
Wednesdays is my OMG day. That is the day I work in and on the business to move it forward. Things like
- creating YouTube videos,
- podcast recordings,
- working on a new funnel or
- doing my writing
Thursday mornings are reserved for calls and the afternoons are for social media. Social media, email marketing, getting ahead on the written content for the business.
Friday, I only work in the mornings. I wrap up for the week, send my accountability emails and then I usually try and do some more learning and some more work on the business to move it forward.
To recap my schedule, Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays are OMG days for the most part. You might ask yourself, when do I respond to clients? Even though those days are internal days, that does not mean I don’t check email or Voxer. I do.
I schedule time to do tasks and respond to emails. As you think about time blocking your schedule, remember that theme days can make it a lot easier.
Consider your Goal
In the next few weeks, I am going to roll out a training with my finisher’s club planner that I’ve been using for the last several years. It has helped me accomplish so much of what I’ve achieved in my life and in my business. I am excited to roll out a full training on that.
One of the things that we do in the OMG finishers club planner, is map out our goals for the quarter and then we take those goals and break them down into action steps.
We take those action steps and break them down again. When you think about how you are breaking it down into multiple steps, it becomes really easy for you to figure out how am I going to get to this next level and the next and the next.
When you are thinking about those steps that happen along the way, it’s really easy for you to move yourself and your business forward.
You quickly figure out your goal and the three sub goals of that goal. You break that down to a monthly level and then a weekly level. When you plan out your week, you can simply
- Look at all the tasks you want to accomplish that week.
- Establish the priority of a task. (It’s a red level task, or it’s a 10, it’s very important to accomplish, or it’s a 0, not super important.)
- Plug those tasks into your calendar on the days where you are working on your business. That way it’s non-negotiable.
- I always say work expands, time allowed. Do not allow yourself to take three hours to write an email campaign. Because believe me, it can take that long to write an email campaign, but work expands, time allowed!
When you are time blocking, you can rate your success on “did this day go well?”
- Here’s why
- Here’s why not based on how much you stuck to your schedule
- How many of the priority tasks you got done
This way it becomes very easy to see, if you accomplished everything you wanted to accomplish.
Many times, I even accomplish some of these simpler, less important tasks. Because often we do the easiest task instead of doing the hardest task first. The problem with that is that we save the hardest task for the end of the day and then the end of the day comes around and we don’t have enough willpower or grit to get through it. The task might just be too big to do in one sitting and we neglect to break it down further.
I truly believe that when you have a process and a system for how you accomplish these things in your business, it can
- make a massive difference in how you grow
- the progress you make and the things that you accomplish along the way.
Time-blocking is a tool that I’ve used to really change the game in my business so that I can continually be accomplishing things.
I want to win. I want to succeed. I want to challenge myself.When I know and can visually see on my calendar, where I time-block these things, I can move forward.
- I have this process in place
- I have these systems that I can rely on
- I can see that I am accomplishing these things and it makes it a whole lot easier for me to move forward.
I would love to know if this was helpful to you and if you are time-blocking in your business. Like I said, time-blocking is an amazing tool for you to really take your productivity to the next level.
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