Time management is a huge issue for anyone running a business. Whether you run your business full time or are trying to go full time as an entrepreneur, these strategies have always worked for me so I hope you will give them a try.
In my primary email account, I create folders for each category of the items I want to save. Here’s an example:
- 2016 Expenses
- 2016 Income
- BYC Post Ideas
- Travel Teaching
- LB Manufacturing
You get the idea. Tracking income and expenses is so much easier when you capture everything in your inbox. At year end I go through the folders and capture everything needed to complete my taxes. Then, at year end I change the name of the folders as follows:
- 2015 Expenses
- 2015 Income
This way, those folders move to the bottom of my list but I maintain the information in case I ever have to refer to it.
I always read about people complaining that they have 100’s of emails in their inbox. I do too, except they are sorted into folders. The only emails I leave in my general inbox are those that I need to act upon. I move items as they come in. This makes a HUGE difference and allows me not to feel overwhelmed.
I have numerous journals used for different things. But I typically only work in one for all of my business items. I jot down to-do’s and take notes on current business courses I’m taking. The lists are two-fold.
1. It helps me as a reference so that I don’t forget anything. Having it in one journal means I know where to look right away when I can’t recall something.
2. It serves as a well-needed "brain dump." Sometimes when I’m in the middle of working on something a thought will pop in my head which distracts me from what I’m currently working on. This is when I have to pull out my journal and write those thoughts down. By doing so, it clears my mind quickly so that I can get right back to what I was working on. Especially since I’m creative, this helps me capture all of my ideas quickly. Brain dumps are so critical to keeping me on task. I can’t stress enough how much this helps me.
This one is tough. One of the reasons it’s difficult is because of all of the notifications each platform provides you with. One way of controlling this is to turn off those notifications, but if you are waiting to see something, that is difficult to do because you don’t want to keep looking at a platform throughout your day, since this opens the door to distractions. So, I leave notifications on, but when they pop up I glance to see where they are coming from and only look at them further if I feel it needs immediate attention. Not everything needs to consume your time.
Secondly, when you do decide to look at social media, control it by making note of the clock and allowing yourself only 30 minutes. This will make you conscious of the time you are spending, give you time to reply to something time-sensitive and still get you back to your to-do list. I always feel like I give too much attention to one platform while neglecting others. This is why you need to prioritize which platforms are going to have the most impact on your business and focus your time on those. Only pick two. Once you have mastered those, then you can add another to your to-do list.
And there you have it: my 3 biggest time management tips! I hope you will give one or all of them a try. Good time management is critical to making sure you are spending your time productively.
Let me know how this is working for you. If you have a great tip you think I should try, please leave me a comment.
About Linda Barutha | BLOOM YOUR CRAFT
Being an entrepreneur has many challenges. As the Founder and Owner of a product based business, I have gathered years of knowledge on designing product, taking it to market and selling both wholesale and retail. My goal at Bloom Your Craft is to share my journey and hopefully help you get your business going.