With many of us finding ourselves taking virtual meetings rather than sitting in a board room, it can be tempting to want to change our entire schedules to make our lives a little easier. I understand that for some of us, we may have to accommodate homeschooling, keeping our family entertained, or taking care of our personal needs. But, to stay productive, and allow the separation of home and work, I would encourage you to create and stick to a time blocking schedule.
Write Out Your Tasks For The Day
Before your next workday, sit down with a journal or a blank piece of paper, and without thinking of order or anything else, write down everything you need to accomplish each day. My list looks a little something like this.
- Walk the dogs
- Make breakfast
- Work out
- Write 2 blog posts
- Check in on clients
- Write 2 1000 word articles
- Check emails
- Send project to team
- Make Lunch
- Do yoga
- Make Dinner
Organize Your List
Then, once your list is done, map out your day. Maybe your day includes homeschooling or delivering food to your parents. Write down, hour by hour, what you can do and when. This is called time blocking. Something I learned from the brilliant Steven Morris of Matter Co. The concept is to have a set time for each of your tasks so that you can ensure you fit everything into your day, and still prioritize self-care and family.
Benefits Of Time Blocking
When I implemented time blocking about a year ago, my work from home business productivity went through the roof. Instead of checking my emails intermittently all throughout the day (and night), I had set aside time for emails from 10 am to 11 am and let the rest wait. It allowed me to free up those other moments to complete writing tasks, create marketing campaigns, and reach out to new clients. It also allowed me to put down work—which is what I want you all to do. Working from home sounds incredible, and it can be. But, when work is at your home, it can be hard to know where that line is. When you are working, and when you are living your life. By time blocking you can say, okay, my work is being done in these hours, and I am focusing on self-care in these hours. Close your computer, turn off your email notifications, and allow yourself to focus on you.
That random list from earlier became:
Create Time For The Things You Love
Now, I have a schedule that I can stick to, and get everything done while still allowing some room to go off track. Every day, for me, this looks different. It depends on calls going on, priorities with my community organizations, and the projects at hand. I have found that the days I decide not to time block, I end up not getting distracted and feeling overwhelmed. I end up having to push things to the next day that leave me stressed. So, I encourage you to give it a try. One week. One week of utilizing your favorite calendar app and planning out your day. It could free you up to focus more on the things you love!
Are you a planner? Send a screenshot of how you check off your to-dos below!