People often ask Emma and I what our secret is for getting so much done. While we do keep busy and work hard, we also have a pretty balanced life. We take days off, and we are able to fit most of our work within set hours each day, leaving time to relax, go on dates and just live life! It hasn't always been this way. Even a few years ago, we still felt like we were working 24/7 without much of a social life. Here are a few tips that helped up gain balance and actually get MORE done in less hours. It's about working smarter, not harder. Here are our tips:
1. Make lists and stick to them.
The number one reason we are able to post 2-3 blogs every single day is because we are organized. When you know what you need to work on you spend less time between each task wondering what is the next priority. Emma and I invest time every week in making a plan and a schedule for the blog articles that we need to write as well as all the behind the scenes work that needs to take place.
I remember how it felt years ago to wake up every morning and wonder what I was going to blog about. I would scramble trying to come up with something and a lot of times just post something quick or easy to fill the time. I LOVE the method we use now so much more. With just a little planning we are able to spend more time working on our blog content and less time stressing. The same rule applies to all the projects in my life. If it's not on my list, I probably won't remember to do it.
2. Do what you must to avoid distractions.
If you need to leave your home for a few hours and find a coffee shop, write blog posts at odd hours or turn off your TV, do it! I often catch myself spending too much time browsing Pinterest and Bloglovin' during work time. Sometimes I have to log out, so I can remind myself not to get sucked in. Seriously… When I am not logged in to any social networking websites, I save HOURS of valuable work time each week. I notice that when I am traveling, I get SO many more quality ideas in my notebook. And I think it's just a benefit of being "unplugged" and changing up my environment.
If you work from home, it's even harder. From where I'm blogging right now, I can look up and see three or four things that I need to do—yikes! I definitely relate with the challenge to stay focused. Bottom line: Don't let your environment keep you from doing your best work. Change your environment or change your schedule… You can do it!
Instead of staring at your huge list of projects you want to do, force yourself to make a short list with only one or two projects. Keeping a smaller number of projects "open" at once will help you to focus and enjoy each one! You can start a new project each time you complete one.
I've learned over time that taking on too many projects at once can cause me to feel overwhelmed and guilty. Commit to prioritizing and working on just a few projects at a time. You will still get some much needed variety in your workload without all the stress!
I hope this has been helpful! If you have any tried-and-true time saving tips, please share them in the comments! xo. Elsie