TIME BLOCKING FOR PRODUCTIVITY AND FOCUS

This is blog post four in my 2019 focus on “A Little Less.” Less waste, less stuff, less distractions, less crappy food, less energy spent on things I don’t love. 

When I learned about time blocking from the amazing Todd Herman, I started using it right away. If you’ve been a part of the FemCity Des Moines masterminds I’ve hosted in the past, you know I preach this almost immediately.

As business owners and busy humans, time blocking is a powerful habit and tool to focus energy on.

We all have a multitude of tasks we need to get done every single day and week. From invoicing to paying credit card bills to writing our marketing content to setting up meetings to watering our office plants.

We all that the same thing in our personal lives… Getting groceries, buying gifts, feeding the animals, cleaning the bathroom, setting up dates with our spouse or friends.

Time blocking makes this all so much easier and more predictable. It takes chunks of your day and allots it to specific types of tasks. Or it takes specific days and/or dates and allots them into specific tasks. Here’s how I use time blocking in my life!

  1. I don’t schedule anything on Thursdays. Ever. This is my creative space where I get into my zone of genius and do whatever I feel inspired to do. It sounds weird, but so many breakthroughs and answers and ideas happen in this space and it is borderline essential for my mental health and the growth of my businesses.
  2. On the 15th and 30th, I handle all of my finances. I follow the Profit First model I wrote about here and handle any unpaid invoice communication and/or setting up auto-payment for clients.
  3. I create four-hour chunks every week to focus on writing content for myself and/or my clients. This varies per week, but I prefer to do it on Mondays so I can also delegate other work out to my VA if I don’t complete my portion.
  4. I have three specific calendar links I use in Dubsado to book coffee dates, happy hour dates, and business inquiry meetings (only on Zoom). I realized I was booking so many meetings and happy hour dates without really assessing what else was going on, which puts me in a really tough place emotionally. These can only happen on specific days of the week and only a couple times per week. It still feels weird putting these types of boundaries up but I only have so much energy and time, so I’m trying to give myself some grace and predictability so I have more time to play and energy to work out.
  5. I do laundry and deep clean on Sundays. It’s really relaxing for me to do these things and keeps me away from my laptop, and I feel like I get to start the week super fresh! I’m adding groceries + meal prep to this super, super slowly. I don’t have a good rhythm for this area, but am really craving it.
  6. I block two hours a week to do stuff I hate. We all have it in life and business. I need to call PayPal and also go to the Secretary of State to file our new address for Brand Launch; these things bring me little joy, but are necessary. By putting them all together, I can just knock it out and go in with a bang by listening to my favorite playlist on Spotify. 😂

Those are a handful of examples and by no means do I live by this in every single moment. I am a seven (heyyyy Enneagram friends), which means I love change and trying new things. However, these habits serve me so well that I am pretty passionate about sharing them in case others also have felt frazzled by the way their weeks or days or months look.

I would advise trying two things to time block that you need a lot of focus on. Maybe it’s 2 hours per week spending time on a project you’re passionate about. Maybe it’s taking Fridays “off” from working with clients and focusing on your own marketing energy.

If you need support in this area, I’ve begun to expand part of my services to supporting freelancers, small business owners, and nonprofits who are struggling to get their digital lives organized to support growth. Just holler here if it resonates. ✌️

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