As a busy, traveling professional, I know how it feels to want to get it all done. “It all” could mean anything from running errands and grocery shopping to making sure you have time to make dinner with your family or even just getting some laundry done (don’t pretend like that doesn’t happen!). While I will note that my partner and I are child-free, we still lead very busy lives! Whatever “it all” is for you, the trick is getting it done while still feeling like yourself. So here are my best tips on how I stay organized – and sane – while doing everything on my plate:
I have an amazing team.
You might be wondering how I get my work and life management done when I’m traveling so much. The answer is simple: I have an amazing team. My team involves everyone from my house keeper and dog walker to my mom and my part time personal assistant! We all are very clear communicators and they know what to expect from me and vice versa. If you’re thinking about hiring someone for anything at all, here are some tips:
- Hire people who care about your company as much as you do. This means hiring people who are invested in the success of the business and will work hard at their jobs because they believe in its mission–not just because it pays well or offers benefits like health insurance (which is important too!).
- Make sure everyone on your team knows what’s expected of them before giving them any tasks or responsibilities–and then make sure those expectations are clear! It sounds simple but can be difficult if there’s miscommunication between co-workers; having clear guidelines from the start will save time down the road when things inevitably go awry during busy periods like around tax season (which again…I’m writing this article during) or during peak travel seasons like summertime vacation season.
I get it all done because I write it down.
If you’re like me, you have a lot on your plate. You’re traveling for work and trying to get everything done at home before leaving for the day. You’ve got very little time in which to do all of this, so every minute counts.
To make sure that I don’t forget anything important while working or traveling, I write down everything that needs to happen during the day into a list (on my phone). This allows me not only remember what needs doing but also gives me peace of mind knowing that nothing will slip through the cracks while I’m away from home base–and helps prevent any major issues later on down the road!
I don’t waste time trying to remember things.
I don’t waste time trying to remember things. I use a notebook and pen to write down things, or I record a voice memo on my smartphone or use the calendar app on my phone to schedule tasks, or I create a to-do list in whatever task management app works best for me at the moment (currently just reminders on my iPhone!).
I delegate tasks to other people who can do them better than me.
As an entrepreneur, I am often asked how I “do it all.” The answer is simple: I delegate tasks to other people who can do them better than me.
Delegating is not a one-size-fits-all solution; there are many situations where delegating would be ineffective or even counterproductive. For example, if you’re trying to build a company from scratch and don’t have any employees yet (a common situation), then your best bet may be doing everything yourself until you get enough funding or customers that hiring becomes an option. But once you’ve built up some momentum and gotten comfortable with running things on your own–or if there’s some kind of skill gap in your team–delegation should become part of your regular workflow.
I’ll admit that I’m still learning how effectively delegate tasks at work; sometimes I find myself putting off projects because they seem like too much work for one person alone! But since starting this blog post on being productive as an entrepreneur (and writing about delegation in particular), my productivity levels have skyrocketed…so maybe there’s something here worth exploring further?
Delegation isn’t just in business either – hiring a house keeper has been some of the best money I’ve ever spent and cuts out a lot of small fights in my relationship. Neither of us have cleaned a toilet in over a year… and it helps.
I automate as much of my life as possible through apps and tools like Trello, Canva, Tailwind and Flodesk.
I use Trello to organize my BIG tasks for my business. If you’re a creative business owner, I highly recommend The Hub from Team Get Shit Done as a Trello organization tool!!
I use Canva to design my social media posts and blog images. It’s a serious game changer.
I use Tailwind to schedule my social media posts and monitor the results (so I can see what’s working, what’s not). Here’s a link to receive $15 at Tailwind (and I get $15 when you try it out!) TAILWIND
I also love Flodesk because it allows me to send out emails for email marketing campaigns without having any coding skills at all! Designing beautiful emails is easy peasy, lemon squeezy. Try it for yourself for 50% off here: FLODESK
I use apps like Grove Collaborative and Instacart to get my household necessities and groceries delivered.
- I love Grove Collaborative because they have a great selection of organic and natural products. They’re also a great option if you want to try new products without having to go to the store or have specific cleaning products you want used in your home. Get a free gift basket (I love the Mrs. Meyers one!) at Grove to try it out: GROVE
- This is especially helpful for busy people who don’t have time for aimless wandering through grocery stores or standing in line at checkout counters!
- For instance, when I was traveling recently, I was able to schedule my grocery delivery within a few minutes with Instacart, and I use it in almost every city I travel to (it even works internationally).
- It’s so convenient! And because these companies offer customized selections based on your preferences–like whether or not someone has food allergies–you can rest assured knowing that everything being delivered will be safe for consumption by everyone involved (which isn’t always true if someone goes out shopping alone).
With all of this in mind, here are a few tips for choosing the best grocery delivery service: -Price: The price point should be reasonable enough to not break the bank but still provide value. For example, when I first started using Instacart they charged $5 per order plus a service fee of $3.99 per order; however, it’s important to note that as of November 2018 they’ve updated their pricing structure so that you only pay $5 per order plus a delivery fee of between $2-6 depending on how far away your store is (which means it’s much more competitive than before). It became way more beneficial to pay their yearly $99 fee for delivery based on how much I use them! Get up to $20 off your first order here: INSTACART
I’m realistic about the amount of time things take and the amount of time in a day that’s available to get things done.
I’m realistic about the amount of time things take and the amount of time in a day that’s available to get things done. I know that I can’t do everything, so I prioritize my tasks. Time is precious and finite, so I have to be efficient with it!
You might think this sounds like common sense–and it is! But when we’re busy (and sometimes stressed), our brains don’t always work as well as they could. For example: If someone asks us how we’re doing, we often reply “fine” even though we may not be feeling fine at all; or maybe we say yes when someone asks if they can borrow something from us because we don’t want them to think poorly of us; or perhaps we avoid saying no outright when asked if they can borrow something from us because then they might feel bad about asking at all…the list goes on and on! We often say things without really thinking or listening first because our minds are elsewhere–like trying not lose track of time while trying simultaneously manage multiple deadlines without any extra help available (if only there was some kind of magical device called “calendar app” that could keep track)…
I know when to say no, and when to say yes! It’s okay if there are some things on your “to-do” list that aren’t going to happen today or next week or next month – but they will happen eventually! Be okay with that!
When it comes to your time and energy, you have to know when to say no and when to say yes. It’s okay if there are some things on your “to-do” list that aren’t going to happen today or next week or next month – but they will happen eventually! Be okay with that! People are generally understanding of needs to say no!
I’ve had clients tell me they feel guilty saying no because they think they should always be available for everyone else. They don’t want anyone thinking badly of them because they said no once in a while (or even more than once). But guess what? No one cares! People understand that we all lead busy lives with lots going on at any given time; so if something comes up where someone needs help with something small like picking up groceries from the store or babysitting their kid for an evening shift at work then go ahead and help out! Just remember: Most people won’t hold it against you if their request falls through due to circumstances beyond your control.
You can do it all – but you have to delegate, automate, prioritize and be realistic about yourself!
- Be realistic about how much time you have in a day.
- Be realistic about how much things take.
- Delegate tasks to other people who can do them better than you can, or more efficiently than you can (if they’re doing something similar).
- Automate as much of your business life as possible with tools like Trello, Canva and Tailwind so that everything from managing social media accounts to creating content is as seamless as possible.
So, I’m sure that by now you’re wondering, “How did this woman do it? What is her secret?” Well, my friends – there is no secret. It’s just a matter of being realistic about yourself and your time and knowing when to say yes or no. It’s okay if there are some things on your “to-do” list that aren’t going to happen today or next week or next month – but they will happen eventually! And in the meantime? Take care of yourself first!