I'm not gonna lie: last week kinda sucked. I was away for the weekend, got home late Sunday night, and hit the ground running Monday morning. Monday, my favorite day of the week because I just do what I want, was totally highjacked by busy-ness, by detail, by switching quickly from task to task to task. And the whole week just slid sideways from there. I felt stressed, cranky, tired, and -- worst of all -- uninspired. Blech.
And why? Because I overscheduled myself.
Let me say that again, to make sure I get the point across: because I overscheduled myself.
I got to Friday just worn out and, to be honest, a little demoralized. Like, THIS is what it’s all about? THIS is the thing I’m making for myself?
Last week sucked because it was ALL Hustle and NO Chill.
The good news is that the experience was so unpleasant, that it made a couple of things crystal clear for me. Most especially the burning need to get my Hustle-to-Chill Ratio back into balance. That HTC Ratio is no joke! And also this:
Being an effective CEO of your business and life means controlling your time – how you spend it, what you give it to & how you ‘waste’ it. It means being RUTHLESS about adhering to your own priorities, those priorities that you know are for the long-term best of your business.
Look, I knew that before last week, but I got to learn it, painfully, again.
So here’s what’s different about this week. And, one hopes, the other weeks after that.
Tip #1: Time Blocking
aka HOW you spend your time
The statistics on how much time/momentum you really lose when you're constantly switching between tasks are grim. Last week what I really craved was to be able to stick with a task for as long as it needed, instead of jumping around. All it took was one really sucky week for me to put a plan in place.
Creative Time: I've now got four recurring scheduled blocks of time in my calendar every week during which I do zero client work, take zero client calls, answer zero client emails. YAASSSSS, these are creative blocks of minimum 90-minutes in duration, so that I can dive deep into a creative project (like working on the book I outlined yesterday, woot!) or developing new offerings. Without this time, I die inside.
"Office" Hours: I've now got set "office" hours during which to schedule client calls, and even added Scheduly to my Google calendar, to free myself from the time it takes to go back and forth with possible times on email. Boundaries, people: so important!
Tip #2: Squad Building
aka WHAT you spend your time on
Here's the deal about the Captain of a ship: she does not swab decks. So when it comes to my business, why the heck am I swabbing? Sure, it makes me feel like I'm crossing stuff off my list, but are my eyes on the horizon (where they're supposed to be) if I'm nose-to-grindstone on a task I could delegate? What should I, and shouldn't I, be spending time on?
Virtual Assistance: I'm expanding what I'm asking for help with, both farming out MORE bookkeeping *and* hiring in some social media help. These are both tasks I enjoy, but they're a time-eating distraction from other bigger goals. [aka: the book]
Client Pruning: Ay, that's a hard one to talk about maybe, but it's important. I am looking hard this week at my client roster and ensuring that I'm doing the right work for the right people. In the same way that I'm delegating tasks that don't need me, I'm re-considering work that doesn't necessarily need me.
Masterminds: I'm leaning hard into the three Mastermind circles I'm a part of, not just for support (#ladybossingishardyo), but for accountability, inspiration, that needed kick-in-the-ass to not get complacent and keep striving for the big wins. That is time well-spent.
It's a New Week. How do you want to feel?
For me it's simple: I want my Hustle-to-Chill Ratio to be right. Yes, I want to work, and Yes, I want to chill. Already, the timeblocking and squadbuilding efforts have me breathing deeply, still inspired. I so want to enjoy what I'm doing. This is not supposed to be just another j-o-b.
How about you? How could you benefit from controlling your time more ruthlessly? What could you gain if you quit swabbing decks?