My last few weeks have been filled with court hearings and traveling and spring break and medical appointments and just stuff…. And this newsletter has fallen to the bottom of the list more than once.
As I thought about what to share today, I realized that priorities are something we all struggle with. After all, each of us only has 24 hours in each day.
These are a few things I do to manage the potential craziness of my own needs, my family’s needs and the needs of my clients:
1. Establish clear working hours. When you work for yourself, or just because of today’s mobile society, it can be really easy to fall into the habit of never quite turning it all off. In the last year or so, I have become much better about working during my working hours (approximately 9 am to 5 pm, Monday through Thursday and 9 am to 12 pm on Friday), and not “working” on the other hours.
This not only allows me to truly focus on my clients when I am working, but also lets me focus on my family and myself during the other hours.
Are you letting work creep into your personal time? Establishing good boundaries is not only good for your mental health, it can also make you more productive during your work hours because you are more refreshed and focused.
2. Keep a to do list. I write a list every day of what needs done. I usually prepare the list for the next day at the end of each working day. This keeps me focused on what needs done next, and what I have promised to do.
3. Calendar important reminders. With trademark deadlines, court hearings, and other tasks that need completed by a date certain, I need to keep track of all of the data. Putting reminders on my calendar as an actual appointment not only makes sure something doesn’t slip through the cracks, but also theoretically saves time in my day to complete the task.
4. Are your tasks related to your goals? It can be easy to fall into routine tasks. Periodically check in with yourself. Are the tasks you are completing related to your bigger goals – like making calls to clients who have indicated interest in your products or services? Or are you spending hours looking at fonts or finding the exact right image for your blog post? Finish the tasks related to your goals before any of the housekeeping tasks — your bottom line will thank you.