Running a business can be stressful and overwhelming. Something that started out as an exciting adventure may now feel like an enthusiasm-stealing stress vortex. But it doesn’t have to be! You may find by restructuring your schedule and responsibilities you’re back to embracing the adventure that is your business.
While it’s easy to accept the value of being more efficient, actually accomplishing this may seem daunting. But, despair not, I am here to guide you!.
1. Figure out which tasks are taking up the majority of your time
Do you reach the end of your day and realize you didn’t accomplish nearly as much as you needed to because you spent the greater part of your day on seemingly small, but majorly time-sucking tasks? If so, it’s time to step back and figure out where your time is being spent and what can done to ensure you’re tackling everything you set out achieve for the day.
It’s as simple as making a list of responsibilities, prioritizing them and highlighting the ones that are stealing the most time. Once you’ve done this, you’ll have a better idea of what needs to be adjusted. Are you finding that small tasks are the primary suspects for burglarizing your time? If so, ask yourself which of those tasks can be automated, so you can focus your energy elsewhere. This brings us to the second suggestion…
Definitely tackling this To-Do list--not browsing the Kate Spade sale
2. Automate Tasks
You’d be surprised how much time you can save by automating tasks! For example, I do content marketing and one of my responsibilities is managing social media. I would hardly get anything done if I manually went to each site to post content. That’s why I use a social media scheduling platform. This way, I can schedule posts in advance for all of our social media platforms; it’s a huge time-saver, and makes my life that much easier.
There are great tools out there to help you automate tasks so you can spend your time on more important objectives. Tools like the POWr Form Builder-Zapier Integration can be used to automate countless tasks! For instance, do you have a form on your website? Are you manually copying and pasting data from your form responses into a spreadsheet? Or manually exporting the data at the end of every day? This tool will do that for you by updating a Google Sheet with all form responses in real time! Likewise, if you want to automatically add new contacts to your mailing list when they complete your form on your website, the POWr Form Builder and Zapier integration enables you to do so!
For less technical tasks, you may find it helpful to prep your coffee the night before and have it automatically brew at a certain time the following morning. There are even platforms for scheduling grocery deliveries, so you don’t have to make the trek to the store. These may seem insignificant, but it’s worth it if you’re aiming to prioritize your time in the most efficient way. Remember, the point of automating tasks is to free up your time from menial tasks so you can focus on accomplishing your big business goals.
Saved so much time automating tasks, I’m spending the rest of the day chasing sandcrabs at the beach 🏖 🦀
3. Eliminate Distractions
It’s difficult to be efficient if you’re constantly being distracted. A great way to avoid this is to create/find a distraction-free space where can work uninterrupted. The interesting thing about distractions is how they vary from person-to-person. For instance, I grew up in a large family. I am comfortable working in noisy environments and tuning-out the world around me. For others, this may be a nightmare where their focus is constantly being broken. I do not work well in complete silence--a little white noise goes a long way.
The important thing is for you to identify distractors and ensure you have a space where you can kick your to-do list’s ass! A great way of pinpointing the greatest culprits of diverting your attention is to spend a week listing different things that continually steal your attention. By the end of that time, you should have a good idea of what needs to be eliminated in order for you to accomplish your best work.
Did she just say there’s a Kate Spade sale--I mean, just over here working…
4. Develop a Consistent Routine
Many people tout the virtues of routine. They develop detailed schedules for their day and see great results in what they accomplish under this regimen. Personality-wise, strict routines don’t tend to work well with me, but I do love a loose structure/blueprint of how my day should look. What I find works for me, is writing out what I would like to accomplish that day and giving my goals a timeframe.
If you’re running a business and find you’re struggling to get your day off to a great start, try taking time to figure out what makes you most most effective. Do you function better with a morning run? Do you find yourself more productive when your day begins earlier? By implementing habits that help you function at your best, you can develop a consistent routine that propels you toward success.
Mmmm. Coffee. The life-blood of my routine
5. Prioritize “Me Time”
As a business owner, you may find that it’s easy to feel like you’re drowning in a never-ending list of To-Dos. If you’re not making a point of prioritizing time for yourself, you’ll likely see your motivation and enthusiasm waning while your stress level rises ever higher. It’s important to set aside me time so you can recharge, destress, and refocus.
While you may feel like setting aside time to take care of yourself is unnecessary, too much work can actually hinder you from being as productive as you could be. By setting aside time to take care of yourself, have a little fun, and decompress, you can keep your stress level down and your motivation up!
Oh, look at that! it’s Me O’clock
By implementing these 5 strategies, you will be well on your way to being your most efficient self, and your business will benefit as a result.