I get this question a lot. And I usually laugh as I am trying to figure out how to answer and say something like, “Oh, but you haven't seen what my house looks like today.”
I don't have an magic wand, and though I do get 7-8 hours of sleep nightly, I do not get up early. I have several productivity tips, as well as a morning routine and systems that I use in my business to stay organized and productive. Today I will share with you what I DO do every day to accomplish more in my business.
The 7 Daily Secrets to Accomplishing More in Your Business
1. Brain Dump
I keep a notebook with me at all times for inspiration, podcast/training notes, appointment notes, to-do lists, planning, etc. It is my brain. Every night I look over things and brain dump and make a list of must dos for the next day. Much of what goes into the notebook will get transferred eventually to the correct program or spreadsheet, or become a blog post, but in the moment it all gets put in the “brain” notebook. It also helps to jot down a non-relevant thought that interrupts a project. Getting it out of my head and onto paper means I won't forget it, but can let it go of it for now to concentrate on the task at hand.
2. To Do Lists
I also use it to keep my running to-do list. I put everything on the to-do list. I can then choose what to do with the time I have and/or plan when to do the “more-time” items. I love the feeling of productivity I get when I can cross off each item and have the visual proof of what has been done. Anything not done today, either gets deemed not important and forgotten, or moved to tomorrow's list.
3. Put it on the Calendar
I use a calendar in the notebook and another Google calendar on the computer for family and business dates and appointments. Having it in both places means it is accessible at any moment for planning. I have found that if you want to get it done by a due date, or need to plan around it, you had better put it on the calendar. It also helps my husband/CEO to know what is going on, on my end, as we share calendars on our computer.
4. Set and Review Goals
Planning your work goals is just as important as planning your menu or your budget. You have to know where you are headed in order to make intelligent decisions about how to get there. I recommend setting long-term, yearly, quarterly, monthly and weekly goals and reviewing them often. You may not always reach the goal, but it's not a test, it's a motivator. Even if you don't reach the goal, you will make much more progress than if you had not set the goal to begin with.
5. Set Work Hours and Days
Delegating certain tasks to certain days of the week, similar to my Grandmother's method of Monday/laundry, Tuesday/baking, Wednesday/cleaning house is another great way to accomplish more. For my business, I have a professional development day (for learning through podcasts, memberships, ebooks and meetings with my coach), a writing day, a client day, etc. This helps you to focus on a set of important tasks and accomplish more than if you tried to get a bit of everything done every day.
6. Use Project Managers
Basecamp, Hootsuite, Dropbox and Google Docs are some of my best business tools. Unlike some other project managers, Basecamp doesn't care what states or countries your team members live in. This is great for bigger projects that have multiple parts to be delegated to VAs. You can assign tasks and due dates, and they can initiate discussions, ask question, mark tasks complete, etc. without direct contact with you. You can set it to notify you daily or by task as things get done.
Hootsuite Pro saves me hours of time monthly by having my evergreen tweets and fb group posts saved in a spreadspheet that can be scheduled and uploaded for the month in just a few minutes. And Google Docs is the primary way I track customer and affiliate info, and share documents with my VAs. Best part, it's free!
7. Get Outside Input
My husband is my CEO and we schedule weekly business meetings where we can get away somewhere quiet to talk about business stuff. We talk at other times as needed of course, but it's nice to have this time to get his input, advice and direction specifically on where our business is going.
I meet with a mastermind group weekly, who help to brainstorm and offer ideas and resources I might not have thought of.
I also meet with our business coach twice per month. No matter where you are in business, you can always benefit from the accountability and advice of a trusted advisor who is a bit ahead of you on the journey and can see things from a different perspective and keep you on track.
Need help making over your mornings for success? Check out Crystal Paine's course. It is very good, even for those of us who may think we don't need help – and it's not about getting up earlier either 😉