Running Your Day!

I feel it is important that we run our days rather than let our days run us! We are all victims of this, I certainly have been, and although I am on top of my days now compared to when I first went solo in business, sometimes my days do end up running me! But then I look at my daily schedule, week planner, and my month and annual planner to remind myself who is the boss in our relationship – ME! Now, everything I am about to share with you is a work in progress! I am by no means perfect but I have had some perfect days (which means it can be done, and my God does it feel good!), which means that, with my high standards that I set for myself, I always I feel I could have done better regarding my time management, even it is the case that I blew a couple of minutes doing something I shouldn’t have been!

As I have said in my previous blog, I plan my day out the night before, with a 5-point list, both business and personal, which I have to accomplish to consider my day a success – the top 3 are paramount. Some of you were very kind with your words and raised the question of what I actually do during my day! So here you go!

Bookending Your Days

To ensure my days start and end how I want them to, I bookend my days, by following a specific morning and nighttime routine. So I wake up at 5 am, go to the bathroom, then take my vitamins and supplements, pray, meditate, write in my journal (more about that in future blogs), get to the gym for 6 am, put on an instructional or motivational CD on my phone, work out hard, come home, shower, have breakfast, turn off my phone, and kick off working! Evenings are pretty routine too: 8 pm I begin winding down, turn the lights low, write out my to-do list for the next day (5 things personal, 5 things business), write in my journal, read 10 pages of an instructional or motivational book, pray, meditate, and go to bed around 9 pm for 8 hours. I put my body through the mill so it needs rest, otherwise, I don’t function optimally! I wake up excited and go to bed satisfied, excited about the next day and my goals!

Regimenting Your Days

This doesn’t mean that I have turned into a drill Sargent and will make you give me 50 push-ups if you don’t do what’s written here! By regimenting your days, I mean know what you’re going to do and when, and make sure you take your breaks! Research has shown that our attention and peak concentrations spans are between 25 and 50 minutes. I know that 50 minutes is true for me, after which my mind begins to wander off and the quality of my output slows down and gets worse! So, I go and make myself a cup of tea during my 10-minute break 🙂

I aim to get in 4 hours of work in the morning, so from 8 am until 12 pm, take a lunch break, usually 30 minutes, sometimes an hour, and make sure I am working by 1 pm until 5 pm. So this means that I work 50 mins x 8 = 400 mins, take 80 minutes of breaks, with between 30 and 60 mins for lunch, i.e. between 110 to 140 minutes of breaks per day! Now, my days don’t always work out perfectly according to plan! My mum might want me to take her somewhere at the drop of a hat (the beauty of working from home, I get to look after my mum <3 ), or unexpected phone calls, visitors, client requests etc. However, knowing that I follow a morning and night routine, have put myself in the right frame of mind to take on the day, have XYZ to accomplish during the day, and having scheduled regular breaks, means that no matter what happens, my day will be successful. Yes, sometimes my days run over beyond 6 pm, no I don’t get all 5 or even the top 3 tasks done during the day, but because I have planned it, I can reorganise myself for the next day!

Don’t Overdo It!

Remember, work is never-ending, so don’t think that you have to work twice as hard the next day to accomplish that day’s tasks as well as the previous day’s tasks if you didn’t get them done! Do what you can the best you can, and if you are passionate about what you do, I am sure you will be, but please don’t burn yourself out! Life has a habit of getting in the way of even the best-laid plans, but that’s a challenge we all face, so it’s not something we need to get too hung up on! Plan and organise your day from the moment your eyes open until they shut, work hard during your 400 minutes of work, chill during your <140 minutes of breaks, and you will be much more successful than without a plan!

If you plan your day the night before, and know what you will be doing in what order, you will accomplish (the majority!) of your daily tasks, no matter what life throws at you! Let me know how you get on!

(If you would like some of my tables I use to help myself and others, find me on Facebook and I will add you to my special group where you can access these and other awesome business materials!).

Planning and Organisation!

Everyone loves a holiday, don’t they? How was your last holiday? Did you plan and organise your suitcase with what to wear, your trip to the airport, flight out, transfer to your accommodation, your accommodation, daily plan whilst out there, meals, sightseeing, food, transfer back to the airport from your accommodation, flight back to your country and your journey home? Went pretty smoothly, right? Awesome! Do you apply the same level of planning and organisation to your own life? If not, why not? If your holiday was a success, why can’t your life be a success, with a bit of planning and organisation? It’s a sad fact that most people spend more time organising their holidays than their own lives, disorganised lives which they want to escape from (there’s a blog in the pipeline about that, watch this space!). But it really doesn’t have to be this way! Get going with your P&O!

Plan Your Months and Year

Planning and organising your year(s), month(s), week(s) and day(s) is crucial if you are going to be successful in achieving your goals which I discussed in my previous blog. It’s great writing what you want and when you want it by but you also need to have a robust plan that you will stick to, day in day out, especially in the face of adversity to keep you focused and on track! Personally, I plan out my next 12 months at the end of November and fine-tune it during December. That’s just me though! Your 12 months can start today! I segment my year into quarters, months and weeks, which helps me create a detailed picture of how I want my year to look in terms of goals and achievements! If you plan your year first, then your quarters, and months, your weeks and days will be much easier to plan for! There are 52 weeks in a year, and my table gives me 4 weeks off! Which I rarely take off, by the way!

Plan Your Week

Next, I plan my week every Sunday afternoon on my weekly planner. I make sure it has everything planned in, from the gym, food, work, family and leisure time, and importantly, sleep (AT LEAST 8 hours)! Segmenting and planning my life has made sure that I have cut off points for all parts of my life, so my work life doesn’t creep into my personal life and vice versa. I want to be successful but I want to do it healthily, and my family means everything to me so I won’t risk or sacrifice them for anything. Now, put your weekly planner up in your office so you can see it ALL times!

I invested in a 24-hour day-to-page diary. If you’d like to see mine, check out my Vlog! I fill my diary with ALL my daily commitments that I have written out in my weekly planner. Yes, it’s duplication but you a) you will remember it better and b) you can carry your diary with you so you don’t miss anything. Your weekly planner helps keep you on task and your tasks top of mind! If you want to do all your planning electronically, please do so, but I urge you to print out your weekly plan whatever you do so you can view your week as a whole!

Plan Your Day

Every evening before finishing up for the day, I look at my diary and weekly planner and plan and organise the next day. I list my 5 most important business-related and 5 most important personal-life-related tasks that I must accomplish to consider my day a success. The top 3 are paramount, so I try to prioritise smartly!

If you plan your days and weeks, your months and years will look after themselves, you will accomplish whatever you wish, no matter what life throws at you! Let me know how you get on!

(If you would like some of my tables I use to help myself and others, find me on Facebook and I will add you to my special group where you can access these and other awesome business materials!).