Do you ever find yourself sitting at your laptop first thing in the morning, terrified at the workday that lies ahead? Do any of these thoughts pass through your mind?
- Why aren’t there 48 hours in a day?
- I feel like I have to climb Mount Everest with all these tasks
- I’ll never be able to get on top of my to-do list
- I’ll never have time to chill with my kids/ boyfriend/ friends
Sounds like you’re feeling overwhelmed. Often, when we follow business women who inspire us on Instagram, we feel like we should be doing everything they’re doing.
Running a podcast? Tick.
Writing a daily blog? Of course.
Managing 7 different social media channels, all with different content? Duh!
The truth is, everyone’s business is different, and everyone’s business GOALS are different. If you want to take back control of your workday and feel like you’re finally on top of things – rather than drowning beneath them – here are my top tips to get you back on track.
Step 1: Accept you can’t do everything
Hate to break it to you, but I’ll let you in on a lil secret: YOU CAN’T DO EVERYTHING! You may be a business boss who’s ready to conquer the world, and for that we applaud you.
But when it comes to battling overwhelm, it’s important to remind yourself that there are only 24 hours in a day, and it’s also extremely important to dedicate time to taking care of yourself in a way that doesn’t involve excel spreadsheets. The sooner you accept that you’re going to have to cut down on your daily tasks and focus on what’s most important, the sooner you’ll be able to take back control of your life. Which takes us on to Step 2….
Step 2: Figure out your top biz priorities
What are your business goals for the next few months? Do you want to build your email list, grow your social media following, or build brand awareness by attending networking events? Maybe you want to start a podcast, run an online course, or want to debut a new product line.
Now, take a look at that list and figure out your top three of these goals. You can come back to the other goals at another point in the future, but for now, these are the things you want to achieve in the short term future. When you’ve figured these out, actively give yourself permission to focus primarily on these goals, and dedicate the largest part of your week to these tasks alone.
Step 3: Make sure your systems are efficient
Now, conduct a little audit of your business processes. Are you using tools that would make your life easier when it comes to managing your social media or your finances? Are you using TOO MANY tools, and can’t keep up?
Invest some time into streamlining your processes so that you can conduct your daily tasks in the most efficient way possible. This will probably involve trial and error, but it will save you loads of time once you find a method that works with you.
Step 4: Prioritise ruthlessly
Once you’ve set your business goals to focus on, break those down into smaller goals, and prioritise again. Want to boss your social media output? Awesome, but is it really necessary to have an Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest AND WeChat? I’m guessing the answer is “probably not”.
Get clear on EXACTLY what your goals are within those three overarching goals, and think carefully about which social media channel your ideal customer uses. If they’re Generation YouTube, there’s no point in spending hours crafting Tweets that only get likes from your dad. No offense, dad.
Step 5: Set a time-specific focus
Your business goals probably change regularly. So for the sake of making sure you don’t get overwhelmed, set a time limit for how long you’ll focus on each specific goal. Depending on what your goal is, that time limit could be weeks or months. Your brain manages better when the task it has to focus on is broken down into bite size chunks.
Do yourself a favour and focus on what you need to do, bit by bit. Soon, you’ll find you’re speeding through your tasks, without the feeling of being swapped by a million different deadlines. Remember what we were told when we were kids: slow and steady wins the race!