Two years ago, when I officially launched my online business, I taught all things productivity and goal setting. My first course was actually all about online calendars, and more specifically my secrets to using it to increase your productivity. In this course, I shared how I was able to structure my days, weeks and even months in Google Calendar and it is still to this day a huge passion of mine. Seeing that my strategy is still extremely effective, I love to dedicate some time every January to teaching it. In this blog, I will share my secrets about leveraging your Google calendar to increase productivity, and how to re-structure and re-vamp in order to have your biggest year yet!
Step #1: Take a little vacation or even a ‘staycation' It is so important to routinely schedule time off. Whether it be to take a vacation with your family or a staycation by yourself, time off is essential! You can use this as an opportunity to step away from your day to day tasks, and to really assess your business. It is also a time to begin to brainstorm ways you can work smarter and not harder in your business. Time away from your business also allows you to reflect and focus on what you want more of in your life and business. If you haven’t done this recently, I highly encourage you to try and schedule this for your next 90 days!
Step #2: Re-do your vision board I start my vision board by going on to Pinterest and creating a ‘secret' board (so only I can see it!) with everything I could possibly want and dream of. Then I take all those pictures and throw them into a document and make arts and crafts magic. I look at my vision board every single morning and night. I have big things like impact goals, donation goals and more, but I also have some fun materialistic things (and that's totally okay!).
Vision boards help us know our ‘why.” Look at your board and say to yourself that everything on your board is part of the reason why you wake up in the morning and your motivation to have an amazing day.
This year I also created a section on my vision board all about gratitude. The things that I accomplished I would move to my gratitude section. To have an abundance mindset you have to be really grateful for what you already have!
Step #3: Brain Dump I basically mapped out every week and wrote down everything that I needed to have happened. I have my morning routine (more on that in a little bit!), work stuff (separated into proactive and reactive work), my workouts, my meals (crazy right?! I'd never eat if I didn't schedule it lol!) and my workday wrap-up routine.
So what's proactive and what's reactive work? Here's what it means to me….
Proactive work is the ‘move the needle' type things in your business. The big stuff that will make a difference in your year. For me that's interviews, Facebook Lives, connections with influencers, working on funnels, content creation, webinars and team meetings. All the big stuff happens in the morning, this is all done before lunch.
Reactive work. Be careful to not be in your email all the time. I use a great Google extension called Boomerang that allows me to pause my inbox. I have the paid version that allows super important emails through so I don't miss anything. More reactive work includes Voxer (one of my favorite audio apps), engaging on Facebook, private and group calls. Another one is checking in on my team with the app Monday.com. We use that to manage all of our daily activities.
I block my calendar into proactive and reactive time.
Here's a peek at my morning routine:
I typically wake up at 5 am. The first thing I do is my morning meditation. I use this really cool app and headband that measures my brain activity. It's called MUSE and has been so helpful since I started using it last March. After that, I go to the affirmations I have listed on my phone. I also take the time to list several things that I'm grateful for each morning. This is NOT the generic stuff, I'm as specific as I can be. Then I review my big goals (I have 3 for the year and for the next 90 days). All my affirmations, big goals, and gratitude notes are listed right in my notes app on my phone! To finish off my routine I go and check my vision board.
IF I have time left I use that for journaling and content creation. I'm a morning person so this is perfect for me, I'm WAY more productive in the morning hours! I take about an hour to write then get the kids (and myself!) ready for the day.
You need a rhythm and routine for yourself. Find what works best for you.
Here's what it looks like to wrap-up my workday:
My husband works nights so I want to be able to dedicate my time to the girls. I unpause my email and check it (usually between 3 and 4 pm), and then re-pause it when I'm done. I check Facebook messages, see if there's any questions or activity on Monday.com and then I pick my 3 top goals for tomorrow. If I have extra time I try to connect with other influencers or hop in the Facebook groups of my materminds.
Step #4: Create Boundaries I only schedule appointments on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday afternoons. On Thursdays, I take a half day. I have to be very intentional about it! I batch my days into groupings where I have to look ‘presentable.' You won't catch me with make-up on Mondays 😉
Step #5: Map our your calendar I take a Google spreadsheet and map out hour by hour for every single day of the week. I list everything I want to do and then color-code it. This way you can see what you have way too much of OR what you have way too little of!
-Set up a Calendly link
-Once your spreadsheet is done, put it on your Google calendar (or whatever calendar you use)
-Don't forget about your personal stuff!
-Put a note on your calendar about 90 days from now. Ask yourself if you're staying true to what you have planned out. Don't wait until next year to realize you gave up in January!
Everybody wants to become more productive and be restructured for January. I'm here to help make sure that your goals stick and you are consistent.
If you need more help check out our She's Building Her Empire Facebook group. I just posted a video on what to expect in 2018. I'd love to have you join us and thousands of other like-minded female entrepreneurs.
While you're doing your calendar don't forget to have lunch with me on Wednesdays! I go LIVE every Wednesday on my fan page @StacyTuschl at 12noon Central Time.
Stacy Tuschl is a speaker, business coach, and the owner of The Academy of Performing Arts in Wisconsin. She is the author of the International Best Selling Book, “Is Your Business Worth Saving?” where she reveals proven strategies for pulling entrepreneurs out of a rut and launching them toward business success.