Ep 60 | Getting Your Schedule Organized

Don't let your calendar take hold of you. You're in charge. And here's how I do it.

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I haven't been that consistent with my content lately – and it's been driving me nuts. Going into week 5 of staying at home, with the whole family, has had its ups and downs. And now I'm trying to get back to a regular routine, even thought it looks different than it used to.

 In this episode you'll learn:

→ How to take control of your calendar.
→ Plan a week in advance.
→ My pep talk for saying not right now!

Want to skip ahead?  Here are some key takeaways:

[2:25] You control your calendar, even if you don't think you do. So make sure that what you put down on your calendar you hold to. And don't be afraid to push things out that aren't on your agenda.
[4:14] Plan your schedule a week in advance. Not only your work schedule, but your family schedule. Know what you have going on so you can line out when you'll get the big projects done. 

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Full Transcript

[INTRO] Hey guys, Sami here with another Fast Fact Friday episode. And today I'm talking about mastering your schedule. So we started these Fast Back Friday episodes a few couple of months back, I think I'm not even exactly sure. And since then it's been a little inconsistent. You know, they're quick and easy for us to do. They're quick and easy for us to edit. And typically all in one take. They're quick and easy for show notes and all of that good stuff. But life has just gotten in the way and especially now that our schedules are crazy. The kids are home, we're both working from home, you know, we've been in the house at the time of this recording. We're going into our fifth week home with everybody and so I've just been a little all over the board.

And so I thought it was just a good time to jump in and have another conversation about different ways that I will try to control my schedule and how I'm doing that now. And I'm trying to give some examples here for if you work out of the house if you work in the house, just different structures and ways that you can kind of maintain and manage your schedule in order to batch and block out time to get things done.

Like, I can't record podcast episodes at any old time. For example, now that everyone's home, I asked my husband to get everybody out of the house, so that I could have some guaranteed quiet and get my thoughts together in order to record this podcast. So I'm going to give you a few of my tips.

But before we get into that, this episode is brought to you by our Digital Marketing Therapy sessions, which are 30-minute sessions with me where we can talk about whatever you want. However, I can help you pivot in your business, create new products and services, market them, work on your website, whatever you need. That's what the Digital Marketing Therapy sessions are there for. And in order to help business owners during this time, I'm doing them for free for the month of April. So head on over to thefirstclick.net/officehours I would love for you to book some time with me. And we can talk about your business and see how I can help you but for now, let's get to some scheduling tips.

[CANNED INTRODUCTION] You're listening to the digital Marketing Therapy Podcast. I'm your host, Sami Bedell-Mulhern. And each week, I bring you tips from myself and other experts, as well as hot seats with small business owners and entrepreneurs to demystify digital marketing and get you on your way to generating more leads and growing your business

[BODY] Okay, so first things first, you really have to make sure that you mentally understand that you control your calendar. And I know that we all say things like, well, I've got this and people need this for me and I get interrupted all the time, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. You own and you manage your schedule, you allow people to communicate with you in the ways that they do. And if it doesn't work for you, then you need to have that communication with them. So here's a couple things examples.

So number one is you know, I'm sitting at my desk and my phone rings all the time. Well, if I'm right in the middle of a project, like recording podcast episodes, or writing blog posts, or maybe I'm doing some website editing. And I might not answer my phone call. And I know people are like, Oh, well, if you don't answer the phone, then people aren't going to buy from you, yada, yada, yada. And, yes, there is that piece to it. However, there's a lot of things that you can put in place.

Like number one, having an alert on your Google. If you're using Google email, you can pause your inbox and you can have something up that says, hey, I'm working on some amazing new fresh content for my podcast that I can't wait to share from you, or share with you. And so I won't be accessing my email today until later. But I look forward to getting back to you this afternoon.

Or it could be something as simple as changing your voicemail to say thank you so much for reaching The First Click Marketing. We are currently working on some amazing fresh new content for you we are unavailable if you need some immediate support, please, XYZ so there's definitely ways to control that customer experience. That customer service excellence that you're trying to do and just know that you can do that and it will and it won't be a detriment to your business.

The next thing that I like to do is take a look at my schedules on Sundays and this has been a little bit nuts. But now that my kids started homeschooling last week, we're going into our second round of homeschooling this week, you know, so my husband and I sit down and put our schedules together on Sundays, then I can go through and block off my time.

Okay, so I know that I already have certain meetings scheduled, I know that I have certain chunks of time. I know when I work best during the day for me, it's in the morning, it might be different for you. So I know in the mornings, I want to do the tasks that take a little bit more mental capacity and in the afternoon, things that I can get interrupted at a little bit more and then start to block out time. Now this can look like a lot of different things.

It could be blocking out a day for client work in a day for your business work in a day where you have to be physically in the store. Whatever it looks like for you, it could be creating content one day, and I have several clients and I also have my business. And so sometimes I like to try some weeks I like to try to do, okay, this day, I'm going to do all podcast work. And it might be podcast work for myself and for my clients, or it might just be for myself, but I know that I'm in that mode of show notes and transcripts and all that stuff. So I just want to get all that work done right away.

Or it could be, I have one day set aside for financial stuff, because I hate doing the financials in my business. So I want to schedule a time where I know I've got that stuff blocked. And for me, this does a few things. It helps me kind of relieve all of that pressure of all of the things in my head that I know I need to get done because I have a bucket where they go. So I know on this day, I'm going to do that on this day. I'm going to do the other thing. And I don't really have to worry so much about when am I going to get these things done because I've got a scheduled place for them and then it's about being as kind to yourself as you are to other people.

So if you've created these nonnegotiables, and you've created these things in your calendar, you've said on Wednesday, I'm gonna spend three hours and I'm going to work on sitting down and developing new product because I know that this is something that's important for the growth of my business. Then do it. Don't let other things come in the way that might not be as time-sensitive or as important.

Two caveats here. One, nobody cares about your business as much as you do. Even if they're amazing employees. You're the one that's really going to have to be driving the business always. And so carving out that time to continue to grow and develop and build and strategize is super, super important.

And the second thing is, and I'm such a bad I do this all the time. Other people's emergencies are not necessarily your emergency. So we all panic and freak out about all the things that are time-sensitive to us, or the things that we think need to get done. And it's important that as a leader of your business, you're really paying attention to what are the things that are going to drive your business forward? And how does this thing that just popped up affect kind of that big picture goal?

If a client calls me and needs to talk immediately, you know, a lot of times they have a conversation, just a brief conversation about Okay, what does this need to be handled right away, or I'm in the middle of XYZ project, can I get back to you in a couple of days, or if somebody emails me and wants to set up a meeting, it doesn't have to happen immediately. If you have the time and space, go for it. But if you have a packed schedule, don't add that stress to your plate. Ask them if they can meet a few days later, and nine times out of 10 they're totally fine to do that.

It's it at least I know for me in my head that if I don't do that immediate interaction, and that's I don't book them on my calendar for that afternoon or the next day that I'm going to lose them or I'm going to provide a lesser level of customer experience. And that's just simply not the case. And I've learned that myself, because as I've started to push things out, so that I can continue to finish what I already knew I needed to get done that week, I really haven't gotten pushback from clients. So really keep that in mind. Does this have to happen right now? How can I block out time on my schedule, and I'm saying this to you as kind of a reminder to myself, because as I said, I haven't been showing up consistently for these Fast Fact Friday episodes. And I really like doing them and I think they provide value. So I need to continue to carve out that time.

So it's way more challenging now to try to find time to record these podcasts episodes because if you look at my Facebook, you'll see the picture of my office right now where I've got, you know, homeschool desk sitting in here. But like I said, you can always create time you can always find space for the things that are really important that are going to really push your business forward. And I would like to challenge you to take some of this time to really sit with your business.

What are the goals that you want? What are the things that you need to get done? And how can you start to craft the schedule that you need to create the time and space for those activities, but as well as the time and space for the business and the life that you want, and you created your business for.

Okay, so, that's it for today. Thank you so much for listening. Make sure you subscribe, wherever you listen, and I look forward to seeing you in the next episode. Bye

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