I can’t wait to share these productivity tips for you this week!
Being uber productive is, let’s face it: a challenge for mompreneurs. I get it. We’re busy. We’re tired. Life is hectic. But we also have goals, a vision, a dream. I don’t know any of us who want to see that dream die. So the key is to keep moving, keep looking forward and moving forward, and find those things in life that help us with our forward focus. That’s why on today’s podcast I’m bringing to you 10 super productivity tips for mompreneurs like yourself and myself- tips that I believe will help us specifically in our season as moms AND business owners and bloggers. I am following these productivity tips as well, so my hope is that you’ll find just as much motivation from these as I am currently.
Productivity Tips for Mompreneurs
1.Get to bed and get some sleep!
Okay, I must absolutely start with the night before, because if we’re honest, that’s when our full day really begins. The kind of sleep you get the night before determines the quality of your following day. Get to bed early if you can, but if you have night obligations that keep you from saying goodnight when most folks are already sleeping you’ll need to figure out a routine that works best for you so that you are getting the proper amount of sleep for your body.
Determine what that is (9 hours, 8 hours, 7 hours?) and stick with it. I know people who survive off 4 hours of sleep nightly, but I don’t recommend it. We moms need all the rest we can possibly get.
If your body is well rested so is your mind. You can think better and make better decisions in family and in business.
2.Start your morning off right.
Now that we’ve taken care of night routine let’s focus on the morning routine. When you wake up, what’s the first thing you do currently? This also determines the trajectory of your day. Do you normally get a reasonable breakfast? A light snack? You don’t have to have a full course meal in the mornings if that’s not your thing, but getting a little healthy fuel for the day first thing is not such a bad idea. Your brain and body cells need a nice wake-up call. For some entrepreneurs, it’s coffee or tea. I always recommend a nice full glass of water to clear the brain first, then move on to whatever makes your mornings happy. For me, it’s a bit of protein like scrambled eggs with a side of gluten free toast buttered with coconut oil. That’s just my morning thing. Other mornings it’s gluten free chocolate chip pancakes on the weekends.
I also have to start off my morning with prayer and meditation. Talking to God, clearing my thoughts, reading and meditating on scripture are what keeps my days in tact for me. It’s the glue that keeps my life from falling apart. I need it. One week a morning I join a group of women for our weekly prayer group and study session. This has been spiritually refreshing and also helps me get motivated for the week ahead when I have the emotional support to do life with other women who are such motivators and encouragers.
3.Set non-negotiable work hours.
The thing about our lives as mompreneurs is that it can get hectic and fast. We have to set work hours aside so that they take priority in its proper time. Those hours are going to typically be non-negotiable so that we can be productive. This means setting aside a block of time where we do nothing else except the work set before us. Use whatever you need: Google calendar, your personal planner, list apps…whatever works to help you plan for setting aside time to work. Then when it’s time to work, pour up a cup of coffee or tea or grab your glass of water, shut the door (put a sign on it if you need to), and work!
Remember, it’s non-negotiable. You’re not going to argue with yourself about it, or with others about it. This is your time to work.
4.Work by a to-do list.
I just mentioned Google calendar and list apps. For me, Google Calendar has been a life saver and I absolutely don’t do life without it. I’ve heard some people enjoy the todoist app. Others swear by the Happy Planner or iBloom Life and Business Planner. It ultimately doesn’t matter what tool you use so long as you create a to-do list and schedule of some sort.
It’s amazing how much a check list will get you through a work day more effectively. Just a few minutes of your time to create that list and put your tasks on your calendar can really change the way your work flows.
It’s all about finding ways to increase your productivity. Having a to-do list keeps you orderly and organized. Your list keeps you functioning within the framework of your task list.
I have found that it is difficult for me to work without a to-do list just because I need an effective way to keep my days functioning smoothly and my work life in order. With a to-do list, I know what’s first, then next, then last on my agenda.
I always have the freedom to shift things around on my schedule, but the main goal is to have a task list so that I know what my day looks like first thing when I wake up. I can then make it a point to tackle my tasks as soon as possible during the day – specifically during my work hours.
5.Dismiss distractions (phone, social media).
If you can get rid of distractions, you can solve 98% of your business productivy issues. The problem with getting rid of distractions is that it’s virtually impossible to do so. People will always ring your doorbell, give you a phone call, text you, or shout your name from downstairs right when you’ve hatched out the most awesome post title ever and you have the best idea for your first paragraph.
The best thing to do with distractions? Dismiss them. (Not the people, just the distractions!) Forget they exist and keep moving. Sound harsh? It really isn’t. That’s why you have voicemail, email and a doorstep waiting for the next (scheduled) visit.
As for social media, turn it off while you’re working on writing and producing content. When you’re ready to share your content on social media then it’s time to get social!
My next few set of productivity tips have to do with how you treat yourself and interact with people around you. I think this is a good chunk of what determines just how productive you are in your daily routines.
6.Factor in a good workout.
A few mornings a week I start with stretching exercises and pilates class. A few days a week I make an early trip over to the YMCA for group exercise classes that really get me moving!
If you haven’t tried factoring in a good workout into your daily routine, give it a shot. Not only will you feel so much better (give it a couple of weeks, though!), you will be proud of yourself for making time to take good care of your body.
Also, working out helps me think better! There’s just something about a good workout in my body followed by a good brain session. I feel more invigorated and ready to hit the day when I get exercise daily- whether that’s taking a walk a few blocks around my house or going to a group exercise class or popping in a pilates DVD.
7.Set aside fun time with your kids.
Our kids are always in need of something from us. After all, we’re mom, and we are always in high demand.
When you’ve made a solid decision to set aside time in your day only to work, if your kids are home with you, this can be a struggle. If you don’t have help, this can be even more of a struggle. I’ve been there, and I get it. My kids are now old enough to entertain themselves and finish up school work without my constant prodding, but when they were younger I needed an extra pair of hands involved in my life each week to keep my business life running smoothly- if I can even call it running smoothly.
The only way for me to balance out the time I spend working on business is to make sure I’m also spending some quality time with my kids: daily. And I’m not perfect, so there are days I’m not operating at my best mode. But I really, really try to be proactive about putting aside time to put work out of my mind and only focus on enjoying the kids.
This, for me, means taking each child aside and asking her what she wants to do with me that evening. We could play a board game, card game, do nails, or watch a favorite show together on Netflix. Whatever they want to do. But taking time out for my kids (beyond helping them with school work) is what keeps us connected in our relationships.
Kids need this a lot more than we think. Just spending simple time with them can make a huge difference in your relationship (and can also help you accomplish your business goals better as you receive their cooperation in exchange!)
8.Don’t forget your partner.
I admit, it’s easy to believe that your spouse doesn’t need you quite as much as your kids do. So, we tend to leave the husbands to fend for themselves as far as time together goes. But I encourage you to not forget him and give him just as much attention as you would want in return.
If you have an awesome husband who is extremely supportive of your life work like mine is, you’d definitely not want to leave him in the dust as you work to achieve your goals. Don’t forget about your relationship and keep the spice flowing there too.
9.Learn to say no.
As mentioned before with the idea of turning off your phone and social media, sometimes you just have to say no. No to impromptu visits with your friends during your office hours. No to random one-hour phone conversations with your bestie when you’d planned to finish up your digital product.
It really is okay to say no to things that keep you distracted so that you can focus on being productive. Say yes to setting aside time for your friends later on, and yes to working on your projects during your office hours now.
Another reason to say no is when you are asked to do things that you just cannot fit into your schedule. It’s okay to say no to requests that don’t align to your values at this time in your life. No to people that serve as distractions or that place too much demand on your time. These are the productivity tips that will help you set boundaries for people in your life.
10.Schedule in fun time for yourself.
Don’t forget about you. Besides taking care of yourself (like working out) you’ve got to remember to put the right foods in your body. So…basically, no surviving on coffee and donuts right? Eat plenty of fresh fruits and veggies and drink a ton of water.
Your body will thank you for the TLC and so will your brain and your business.
Also, don’t forget to love on yourself with your favorite music, movies or t.v. shows. Sit down and treat yourself to a mani/pedi – either at home or out with friends at a salon. Take a load off and curl up to read a good book in a bubble bath one evening. Make plans to visit a jacuzzi and just chill.
The smaller things- like watching your favorite movies and listening to good music are things you can incorporate into your life daily. If you play an instrument or paint, make sure you have time to add these valuable activities into your life. Start weekly and then work up to daily.
For bigger things like salon or jacuzzi visits with friends- you may want to make this a monthly or quarterly ritual, something you can work up to as a big reward for all the hard work during the month.
Most of all, have fun with your life- both in work and play- and you will be a much happier person.
Did you enjoy these productivity tips? Please let me know if they help you in your lifestyle as a mompreneur.