Productivity 101: How to Maximize Your Time When the School Bell Rings
Close your eyes and imagine if you will: it’s a Monday morning. Your agenda is packed. Your coffee is still hot. Your outfit is rockin’. And you are ready to crush the day! But something (or someONE) is missing. Listen! No one is tugging at your arm, begging for a snack. There’s no arguing over who gets to play on the Nintendo Switch. And I’m willing to bet your television is not blaring the sounds of Bluey, Blippi, or Big Bird.
That’s right: it’s September and school is back in session! You’ve put your business on hold all summer long and your hopes and dreams for that side hustle have ceased to exist (or at least it’s barely limped by for the last 3 months). But we are changing that NOW. While your children are busy learning about reading, writing and ‘rithmetic, I have a lesson plan of my own.
I’m teaching you how to land an A+ in productivity once your kiddos head back to school. It’s time for Efficiency 101 and I am your instructor, Jennifer Sakowski.
So what’s on the syllabus?
✏️ First of all, make yourself a priority.
- Go get that Brazilian Blowout.
- Visit the nail salon and try that chrome aura nail trend.
- Read a good book.
- Organize the playroom.
- Pick up a PSL at your favorite coffee shop.
My point is, treat yo’self! Do something that makes you feel good because if your home space (and your head space) are organized, happy and in place, that trickles down to your business life. So schedule the maintenance appointments you’ve put off all summer. Thank me later as you flip your newly-highlighted hair over your shoulder.
✏️ Secondly, identify your schedule.
Pinpoint how many child-free hours you have daily/weekly. I recently logged into Canva and download a weekly schedule template. I labeled it “My Perfect Week” and I mapped out when my kids were in school: from the time they get on the bus to when they roll in later that afternoon. Then I fill in the gaps with business meetings and personal activities. Here’s a look at my sample week:
If you’ve been around here, you know that I have those daily habits and routines that I do not negotiate with:
- I work out
- I move my body
- I read 10 plus pages of a non-fiction book
- And I spend time with Jesus.
After that, it is GAME ON, friends. I have approximately 35 hours a week to devote to my business and let me tell you: if you do not spend time on your business, your business WILL NOT GROW.
It is a proven fact that statistically, the more time that you spend on your business, the more your revenue grows because then you’re expanding your services, you’re fine-tuning how you work with your clients and you’re putting out more quality work.
So I’ve started my “focus time” and that dedicated time is Monday mornings.
I start in my office by tackling my to-do list, feeling fresh, and then knocking out an important task. I allow for personal time in the afternoon (like a dentist appointment, maintenance appointment, etc).
I use an app called Acuity Scheduling that lets me run my business while I’m on the go. I can access my calendar, edit my availability and schedule appointments.
This allows me to be fully present, better prepared and I can manage the energy levels needed for each task. Otherwise, I’d be bouncing between schedules, struggling to multitask.
✏️ Step 3: Set Goals
What do we need to accomplish? For me, I have a sales number that I want to hit and products that I want to productize within our business that I want to have done by the end of this year.
- Yearly Goals
- Sales Goals
- Personal Goals
- Team Goals
And if it starts to get overwhelming, focus on one task you can accomplish. What is the one thing you want to achieve during this time window that will move the needle forward?
✏️ The fourth and final step in my crash course to Productivity? Get busy!
Put your head down, get the work done and stick to your schedule. Just like most routines, allow yourself 2-3 weeks for consistency and then reassess. It’s the same thing with diet and exercise. We can’t just do five push-ups and expect our arms to be huge and our shoulders to be sexy. Give it time, stick to the schedule and be consistent. Remember: if it’s uncomfortable, then it’s probably working.