“Work smarter not harder”
Wouldn’t we all like to do that? Wouldn’t it be great to get to the weekend and just embrace it? Would’t it be nice not to worry about the work that didn’t get done during the week, or have a list of to do’s a mile long? I envy people who can shut off work and just embrace the weekend (or their days off). I figured they were better at time management or had a hidden stash of money so there was no stress in their life. Crazy right? Remember I am a struggling, recovering workaholic.
Over the last few weeks, I learned a little bit about working smarter, not harder. I found that despite the brain fog as a result of health issues, I have been able to focus more, enjoy time with friends and family, and have some clarity in my work and my life. For the first time in a LONG time working from home, I have put down the computer (and the phone) to watch a movie, do some household chores and actually read a book.
Did my business fall apart? NO! Did customers care that I didn’t answer their emails/messages right away? NO! The truth is, my business kept moving forward. The best part was that I didn’t feel burnt out, exhausted or stressed. Did it happen overnight? NO! It is still a work in progress? YES!
It has taken weeks of trial and error, hard work, and paying attention to what feels good and what doesn’t to be able to get to this place. The best part is that I have been able to change my schedule around so that I get to be present in my life.
Here are some things that have helped in the process
Embrace Three: I have been working with Desiree Wolfe who routinely reminds me to make a list of 3 things that need to get done each week. Then break down the tasks so that they are accomplished. I also read parts of Greg McKeown’s book, Essentialism, which talks about only doing what is most essential. Of course, there is also the need to get crazy comfortable with the word “no” which is still something that I am working on!
Setting boundaries around my routine: This is a tough one for me. Protecting my time in the office is key. I plan out my week based on what I need to get done, then I stick to the plan. When someone says “what is on your schedule?”, I now gladly share that I’m working from X to X. By setting up a schedule, I have been able to accomplish more AND break away to embrace life. I mean wasn’t the whole idea of having your own business to have flexibility.
Building a business that aligns with how I work and live best: This has been my goal ever since I started my business. I wanted to find a way to blend my work (my passion) and my life. With harmony in both, I am able to thrive. I mean if momma’s not happy, no one is happy, right?
Losing the guilt: WOW! This one is HUGE for me. On the days that I do this, I’ve been able to work smarter, not harder. I’m don’t feel guilty about being in the office for a few hours on hubby’s days off. I’m don’t feel like I’m being lazy and complacent when I am reading a book or watching a movie. Fighting the inner gremlins of guilt and learning that self-care is important to not only embracing life but also to building my business.
No matter what your journey is, you need to know that it doesn’t always have to feel like an uphill battle. You have permission to seek out how to work smarter, not harder. It will take time, BUT the only way to get there is to start shifting your routine, schedule, and mindset. Even baby steps will lead you to where you really want to be.
Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!