Stop being busy…be productive!

So you’re a small business owner, or you work full time and you have a side hustle… you may even be a parent as well. Do you sometimes go through your day in a haze of “to-do’s” never really feeling like you’ve accomplished much, other than perhaps keeping your children alive, and hopefully keeping up with your clients demands? If this sounds familiar, I am exhausted FOR you! But… I have been there, so many times, and I know how gruelling that feeling is, and eventually it does all come tumbling down. I want to share with you some of the bullet proof tips, hacks and habits I have formed to ensure that I get the most out of my days, and actually feel a sense of fulfilment rather than empty exhaustion. 

A little about me… I HATE routine, yup… its true, I am a free spirit, I am very passionate and I  thrive on being spontaneous, HOWEVER, becoming a mum and a business owner I quickly realised routine is so important to ensure that you stay on track and that you don’t feel like you’re drowning. So I have shifted my mindset and learnt how to set up my work weeks so that I get the most out of them. This routine allows me to have the freedom I also need to be spontaneous, so I don’t run a tight ship 24/7 because that would make me absolutely miserable. As crazy as this sounds, I actually schedule blocks of time where I can just let my creativity take over, and where I am not bound by a to do list. 

Below I will share some of these habits and tips with you, and I hope that you can take something out of this blog piece to help you feel more in control of your day to day life. 

Sunday funday… with a little preparation thrown in. Taking a couple of hours to set yourself up for a successful week is important. My Sunday afternoons consist of some meal prep, over night oats and chia pods are nice and easy to pre make and pop in the fridge for the week ahead. Smoothies are another great quick breakfast, so I always ensure I have almond milk, frozen berries and banana’s in the freezer ready to blend and go! I write up a weekly dinner plan as well, that way I know exactly what meat to defrost on any given day making dinner time much easier. You would be amazed how much brain power can be wasted on thinking about what to have for dinner! 

Writing a to do list is crucial to ensure that you are across everything you need to get done for the day/ week. Every night I write a to do list before I go to bed for the following day. This helps me get everything out of my head enabling me to fall asleep easily, rather than lying awake trying to remind myself of all the tasks I need to complete. I have recently discovered writing your to do list out by the hour! It sounds intense, and at first I wasn’t keen but its actually amazing. Write up your entire day and allocate a time to each and every task. For instance my to do list this morning looked a little like this…

6am – wake up, lemon water, brush my teeth, turn the coffee machine on, post for various clients on IG. Check on my facebook ads clients. 

7am – Jackson wakes up, give him his breakfast, I check my emails and messages.

8am – Get Jackson dressed for daycare, and have a coffee with my husband before he leaves for work. Hubby usually takes Jackson to daycare which means they are out of the house by 8:30am – I hop in the shower, get dressed, make another coffee, tidy up the house, put the washing on etc.

9:30am – Client call… and so on and so forth! I even schedule in a walk, and a gym session.

They say it takes 21 days to create a habit, so I urge you to stick with it. And don’t become discouraged when life happens and your hour by hour task list goes to hell in a hand basket, just start again tomorrow, life is always going to get in the way at some point, but knowing you have a plan of attack will make you feel more in control. 

Don’t be a martyr, yes some weeks you are going to feel so slammed that you have no idea if you will ever have 5min of peace, but if it was easy to run your own business, everyone would do it! 

No screen time 30-60min before bed time. I set my alarm for the next morning and turn my phone to flight mode and spend the next 30-60min reading, journaling, writing out my to do list etc. It’s so important to unwind before bedtime to ensure that you fall asleep and have a restful night. Sleep is incredibly important for us, and theres no medal for being the most tired and exhausted human, you’re just going to end up burnt out. 

Coming to terms with the fact that you simply cannot do it all, and be everything to everyone at all times. Learn to say NO. Sometimes we have to say no, even to family, in order to ensure that we are also looking after ourselves. It’s called self preservation! 

Stop with the guilt!! I am still working on this one, I think as a parent you’re always going to feel guilty about something, so I have now learnt that its just part of my thought process, and I combat it with reason. I often feel guilty because I chose my own business over being a stay at home mum, but for ME, that is what I wanted. I needed to get back to work, and I had a passion for starting my own business. Being true to yourself and authentic to who you are and what you want makes it a hell of a lot easier to follow your dreams. Concerning yourself with what others are doing will only make you criticise yourself, and what good does that do? Stick to your lane, and see what you can achieve! 

Mindset is a huge contributing factor to how your days, weeks, months and years go. Want to be successful and achieve great things? Then you need to think it and believe it, but most of all, DO it!  If things aren’t currently working for you, then take a step back and look at what needs to change and how you are going to implement the changes to ensure that you start working towards your goals. 

Hustle is such a popular term at the moment, and as much as we can all relate to the hustle that is running your own business, we also need to stop taking it to the extreme. Self care is incredibly important, nutrition, sleep, exercise, and some down time needs to part of your weekly to do list. You’re no good to anyone if you aren’t being good to yourself. 

Website | Instagram | Facebook

Written by: Lindell Stewart – The Social Difference