Working from home requires a certain type of individual. With all of the distractions out there, its impossible to always be focused on your work. I get excited for the energy that comes in January because there is always such a strong momentum to our success in every area of our lives. I recently read an email from one of my readers asking me how I get so much done. I've been working on the blog, my design clients, Ista Magazine + society and now I've been implementing video.
As cliche' as it sounds, I attribute my time management skills to my planner. It has taken me a few years to get my planner routine down but I am feeling like I finally have gotten my system going. I used to buy beautiful day planners and would use them on and off. I never really would actually commit to keeping up with my planner.
I've shared plenty of posts on how I use my planner to stay focused and inspired but this year I've perfected a system that helps me even during those times I feel uninspired. I'm learning to bring spirituality to my work so that I'm not ever over worked or lagging for inspiration. So today I want to share with you my newest strategies for keeping up with my time management in 2017.
This is just what works for me, you can add on to, take and use whatever you choose, just find the right system that works for you and you are sure to have success in 2017!
1. Get a planner you absolutely love. I can remember when I first wanted to purchase the Louis Vuitton GM agenda, I had all sorts of thoughts like "this is a little bit extravagant" , "I could be using my money on something much more functional", "I shouldn't be wasteful of my money". My mindset was holding me back from the vision I held for myself.
First of all, I absolutely deserve to have a beautiful and luxurious planner and if I can afford it, I should treat myself to something I love. When you invest in something quality, you tend to take it a little bit more seriously. I used to spend anywhere from 15-80$ for my planners and I wouldn't even commit to using them. Having something beautiful, of fine quality that you invest in, will bring more attention to actually using it. I AM NOT suggesting that you must go out and drop $1,000 on an agenda or planner but get a good quality one that you adore.
Also, don't hold back on your office supplies, pens, business cards, etc. Investing in quality will keep you focused on that excellence in whatever area of your life it goes to. That mindset of excellence will bring you success every time.
2. Keep yourself at a high vibration. In the front page of my planner I have a pretty vision board that inspires me. I also keep a few sheets from some of my favorite books + journals. Each morning, I say mantras from this sheet of positive affirmations. I like to keep these in my planner to reference when I have those days where I am not feeling fired up or wanting to work. You can also tear out your favorite quotes and put them in your planner.
Find what works for you and be sure that your planner has encouraging and inspiring content. Whatever you have to do to enhance your planner in this way. Do it asap.
UPDATE: This is the Law of Attraction planner I purchase every year which contains the high vibration chart you see above. I tore out the one from last year and put it in my LV. This year, I got this rose gold one. I use it for my personal life planner and I am obsessed with it.
3. Plan your week ahead of time. Over the years I have developed a few methods I use for planning but the one I have now is REALLY working for me. This is why I lean towards a ring planner, where I can take out and add in things at any time, it just helps my system best. I add in only 3 months worth of calendars. I find that planning for each quarter helps you reflect at the end of the period and see where you need to make adjustments. Goals change, dreams fluctuate, so you'll make it easier on yourself if you allow room for change and growth.
Then I plan my week each Sunday. It's a Sunday ritual I have and I always feel that fun rituals keep you successful while having a blast at the same time. I make it fun. I light candles, put on calming music, grab some pretty pens and go to work on my week. I use these fabulous Weekly/Daily capsule pages from Cloth and Paper.
I like to plan my week ahead with select days and times I work on things. For example, I factor in Gym Time, breakfast/lunch, journaling time, etc. Giving an appropriate amount of time for each activity really helps keep you on track and stay focused on just that activity. You want to keep each activity as distraction free as possible.
4. Keep your desk clean. They say that a clean bed equals a clean head. Well, same goes for your desk. If your desk and fresh and clean, you won't be distracted by stacks of papers and you won't waste time fumbling around for things. When you are organized and clean, you way less likely to procrastinate.
You don't have to be a full time hustler to be successful. The secret is that its all about working smarter, not harder. Try cleaning up your desk as the first step to achieve this. If you feel like you are being pulled in too many directions, there is never enough time to get it all done or you feel erratic while you work. . .it's time to clean up and de-clutter!
5. Allow yourself to flow. Things happen. You aren't always going to stay on track. That has to be okay. Let's say I am working on a blog post and I am just feeling a little bit of writers block or a lack of inspiration. I drop that task and go to something that's currently inspiring me. When you have a lot going on and you feel passionate about it, you'll tend just just flow in it. Stay in your flow and adjust your schedule to fit that.
To aid me in these moments, I have a whole section in my planner called MOTIVATIONAL AF and its filled with a few lists of things I have written down like. . . Inspired blog post ideas, ideas for the magazine, things I can improve that are already in my business, etc. There will always be something to do and something new that can inspire you.
If there isn't, then perhaps you need to join the Unleash Your Ista Society and find out how to get your passion and purpose back in your life and work. You don't even have to be an entrepreneuress, you can bring passion and purpose to whatever work you do. Whether its being a mom, a janitor or a bus driver. You have a special purpose in this world.
I wanted to create something a little more fun for you guys to see, so check out my planner tour: