When you’ve got to catch up from the Christmas break and tackle what the new year has to bring how are you going to stop yourself being overwhelmed before you’ve begun? Implementing some organisation and a daily routine can help massively but isn’t always easy if it doesn’t come naturally.
Here are my top tips for introducing a bit of organisation into your working life.
Start by emptying your head of all the noise. Get a sheet of paper (A3 if you can) and write down everything that’s on your mind. Upcoming tasks, projects, goals, aims, concerns and ideas. You can keep it work-specific or include personal and domestic stuff, whichever works best for you.
Now to put everything in order of priority. Get another sheet of paper, divide it into quarters and group your brain dump into the following categories:
- Less important
- Not important
Look at each set of tasks. Which of these has to be done by you? What could be done by someone else?
Identify all the tasks that can be outsourced and move these to a separate list on another sheet of paper. Add a note to find someone to outsource to if you don’t already have this resource.
Time-blocking is an essential part of being organised for me. Not done it before? Time-blocking is simply setting aside specific chunks of time for different actions and projects. Work out how long you need to spend on each task and block it into your schedule. Don’t forget to include time to find a VA, bookkeeper etc. to ensure you delegate the outsourceable tasks.
It’s also hugely important to plan in:
a) breaks (these should be regular and realistic e.g. 15 minutes for a cup of tea, not 5 minutes)
b) contingency – there will always be some tasks that take longer than you anticipate, or unexpected interruptions to your working day.
Make sure you have contingency built into your week – if you don’t need it no problem, you just won back some time!
Repeat the process above on a regular basis – plan it in weekly or as often as you need to.
When you get into the habit of doing this you’ll build structure into your working week without even realising. Meaning you’re much less likely to be overwhelmed. And much more likely to be equipped to deal with whatever 2022 may throw at you.
The HLVA Team specialises in helping small business owners implement processes and structures. We take on the day-to-day admin enabling you to focus on your business and serve your clients. Get in touch to find out how to take your business from chaos to calm.