If you want to get more organized in your business and streamline your tasks, this episode is going to show you exactly how I do just that. The truth is, running 2 businesses while my husband was working a full time job and homeschooling our 3 kids was no easy task. So I had to learn how to get really creative with my working hours.
“I want to run a 6 figure photography studio, I want to fully book my calendar, I want to retire my spouse from his 9-5…. But I don’t have time!”
Oh, my friend. THIS is the 1 thing you have to stop saying if you want to succeed! We’re going to rid you of that excuse after this episode! I’m going to teach you exactly how I structured my weeks running 2 businesses, homeschooling my kids all while my husband worked a 9-5. Grab a pen and let’s go!
Productivity in Business Series
We’re continuing with this theme of productivity in your business. We started with Episode 34, entitled “6-Figure Studio AND Part-Time Hours? Yep. Here’s How!”, where you learned what to focus on in your business to grow quickly.
Then Episode 35 where I talked to Brandi Mowles, business owner and mom who went from 0 to a million dollars in her business in 2 years.
Then Episode 36, I shared the 3 things I outsourced and why to hit $10k months, so after you listen to THIS episode I highly encourage you to listen to those episodes which you can find on our blog or From Better Half to Boss Podcast on iTunes.
“I’m good at multitasking” is a lie.
This episode is for a photographer who feels scattered when it comes to working in your business. If you’re editing, then answering an email when it pops in, taking client calls, sending invoices, and working on social media all at the same time, yet still feeling like you’re not making progress in your business, this episode is for you!
You’re going to learn how to batch your week to get more done in less time.
And I know that is something you hear a lot from others and from me, but it’s really true that when you’re jumping from task to task you’re really wasting hours per week. So no wonder you feel like you don’t have time for your business right? Multitasking is sucking your hours away!
The New Yorker reported that 98% of people focus best when facing a SINGLE task instead of multiple tasks. Several studies show that it takes at least 15 minutes, or 23 on average, to refocus your attention on a task after a distraction or switch to a different task, according to Monday.com.
Think about it like this: have you ever been with your kid in a mall and they’re jumping from big tile to big tile, trying not to step on the cracks? So you’re walking next to them and they jump… then pause, think about their next move, BIG JUMP. And you’re just walking at a normal pace, holding their hand.
Imagine that scenario. Who is in front? The adult walking at a normal pace or the kid jumping from tile to tile? 9 times out of 10, the adult is the one that is ahead in that situation. Not just because their legs are longer, but because the kid is using so much concentration and time to jump big distances that is actually, overall, putting them behind. Same with jumping from task to task, multitasking is NOT being efficient with your time.
Time Blocking vs Batching Your Week
Time blocking refers to how I batch my DAY with my HOURS in the day. Batching my week refers to how I batch my WEEK with the DAYS in my week. Once I started batching my week, it allowed me to get so much more done, focusing on what I needed to accomplish each day.
Instead of going, “Ok I need to do all these things this week,” I now sit down on Monday and I know, “Ok, this is the day I work on client and student activities.” I’m not wasting the mental energy on deciding what to do because it’s already been decided.
Your brain can only quickly and rationally make so many decisions in a day. So, when you can take away as many day-to-day decisions as possible, it’s freeing up your brain to make IMPORTANT decisions.
Barack Obama said, “I’m trying to pare down decisions. I don’t want to make decisions about what I’m eating or wearing. Because I have too many other decisions to make.” You may have heard this before, but many successful people like Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerburg, and Barack Obama wear the same thing everyday. Eliminating decisions helps us focus our energy on where it matters.
“But Tavia, I don’t have a regular 9-5 work schedule.”
Even if you’re part time or you have kids at home most of the day and you don’t have a traditional 8-5 schedule, I’m here to tell you, most of us don’t! Including me! I batch my days and weeks but that doesn’t mean my days always look the same. So if you’re thinking, “Ugh, this sounds boring and monotonous,” I’m here to tell you it’s definitley not. In fact it’s the opposite of boring because doing this allows me to work less, which frees me up to do more of the things I’m working so hard for.
How I Batch My Week
Ok, I want to make sure we’re all on the same page here, so again, time blocking is saying, “From 8-9 I’m answering emails and from 9-10 i’m editing,” etc. Of course this is going to be done best if you don’t have kids underfoot. When it was just me homeschooling my kids, toddlers running around, and my husband working a 9-5, I found childcare 2 full days a week, so I could have focused time to work. It was so important for me to have quiet time where I could think and it was under 15 hours a week that I had this child-free time, so I had to maximize it!
So we’re eliminating multi-tasking by time blocking our days because we know it wastes time in our day. We’ve talked about this before on the podcast so hopefully this is a little review for you. Today, we’re going to take that same concept and time block our WEEK by choosing an overall theme for each day we’re working.
Choose a Theme For Your Days
For example, today my days look like this:
- Monday & Tuesday – Client / Student Days
On these days I meet with clients, do birth consultations, shoot session, have coaching calls and anything that involves working with clients or students.
- Wednesday – Content Day
I create content for the blog, the podcast, schedule social media posts, etc.
- Thursday – Product Development Day
This is going to be more relevant for someone with an online business. This is the day I look at my courses and online products to find ways to improve them to get our students even BETTER results and I do those improvements on Thursdays. If you don’t have an online business, you can (and should) still do product development, but this will look more like analyzing the existing products you have for your studio. Do you need to update your product samples at the studio? Maybe update the offerings on your website or what you’re showing on your website. Basically, just asking yourself how can I make this product better and is there anything I need to add or takeaway to give my client an even better experience?
- Friday – Team, Admin, and Finance Day
That’s several things that are very different all in one, but they’re small enough that they can all fit in one day. Admin is the back end of my business including continuing education. So if I’m taking an online course, I work on it Fridays, I also run payroll and do other fun finance related tasks, if any. And Friday is the day I work on our team whether that be systems or anything else that needs refining or tweaking.
To narrow down what your theme days could be:
Make a list of what you’re already doing in your business. Start here. Don’t add in all the “I need to be doing…xyz.” Focus on what are you CURRENTLY doing:
- To do this, get in a quiet space when kids are napping or after they’re in bed or even go sit in the car (I’ve totally done this), and brain dump everything you can think of that you currently do in your business. Write it all down.
- Then, look at the list and start to categorize things that are similar:
- Answering e-mails, submit client orders, shoot session – those are all alike because they’re serving your client or potential client.
- Posting on ig, writing a blog, or check in with vendor partners – those are all marketing-related activities.
- Look at the volume of those items to determine if it needs more than 1 day (I have 2 days set aside for client & student work).
Doing this will take a little trial and error, you might have to move things around and that’s okay! I still do this! Sometimes I have a client-heavy week, so Thursday becomes Product Development and Content. I still follow the system of batching my week with theme days, but there are some days that change, and that’s okay! I don’t want you to get really strict and rigid with this because you don’t need to be. It just helps to have a general idea of the things you need to focus on every day.
Hopefully that gives you a starting point to batch your days as well as your week. The point of doing all of these is to get your time and your life back. To run a 6-figure studio, to fully book your calendar, to retire yourself or your spouse without saying “you don’t have time.” You won’t have that as a reason anymore because you are really diligent about the time that you are spending working.
If you’re enjoying this podcast, please hit SUBSCRIBE wherever you’re listening and thank you so much for leaving the show a review on itunes! I read each and every one and it helps this podcast reach more people. So, THANK YOU!
My friend, if you have a passion – it’s not an accident. Not everyone loves photography, or event planning, or real estate… whatever your passion is, it’s there for a REASON. What are you going to do with that passion? Get out there and make it happen! Have a great week y’all!
Hey there! Check out the links mentioned in this episode:
Episode 33: 6-Figure Studio and Part-Time Hours? Yep. Here’s How!
Episode 35: Let’s Scale Together! Simple Ideas to Grow Your Business frm Zero to Million (with Brandi Mowles)
Episode 36: 3 Things I Outsourced to Hit $10k Months
Do you have a question? Submit it here: www.taviaredburn.com/ask and I might answer it on the podcast!
Leave a review on iTunes! Check out www.thebeautyinbirth.net/podcast for instructions.