Hello, new friends! I’m Bonnie, the owner and creative director behind b is for bonnie design, a boutique branding studio for creatives and inspirational print shop. As a brand stylist, shop owner, business coach, wife and more, I fully understand the life of a small business owner is anything but easy. With the many hats we wear as business owners, how are we supposed to conquer our to-do lists while still leaving room for margin in our lives?
A hectic everyday schedule can threaten not only your creativity but also your sanity as you rush from project to project, but it doesn’t have to be this way, friends! I’m a big believer that by building intentionality into our workday, we enable ourselves to not only do some of our best work, but also live a life that leaves room for rest and what truly matters.
Although the concept of setting boundaries in our work life can initially seem daunting or overly structured, this structure can provide the freedom we need to work efficiently and effectively. In order to make quick work of your project list, create a consistent work schedule for yourself and set office hours. This dependable set of office hours not only lets your clients know when they can expect to reach you, but it also serves as a sort of daily deadline giving you a specific number of hours to accomplish each day’s tasks.
Once you have boundaries like office hours in place, be sure to stick to them in every facet of your day from client phone calls to emails to social media. When it’s time to clock out, step away from your inbox and transition into personal time instead of continuing work time.
Make Wise Use of Your Time
Although creating a specific set of work hours can be helpful, it’s important to handle those work hours wisely in order to make the most of them. Maximum productivity yields maximum profitability, and when you work efficiently, you enable yourself to take on more clients and projects in the long run.
Time management is no joke! What you do with the hours in your day have the power to make or break your business. By choosing to work to the best of our ability, we are not only enhancing our client’s experience, but we are also challenging ourselves, and our creativity, as we work towards completing each task.
If you work well with a clearly defined schedule, create blocks of time for specific tasks throughout your workday. Dedicate specific blocks to tasks like answering emails, client consults and actual project work. Giving a proper time for each task will help you stay on track and not lose time to one particular task over another.
Think you’re working smartly? Keep a log of your time so you can see how much time you’re actually working versus checking Instagram. You’d be amazed how much time we lose to small distractions when we aren’t vigilant with your time!
With solid boundaries and a wise workflow in place, make conquering your to-do list even easier by setting goals for yourself. I personally like to review my to-do list at the beginning of each day and pick my top three to five items to accomplish that day. This not only helps me prioritize, but it feels great to cross off those items at the end of my workday!
Respect your limits and know your boundaries as you balance work and personal life. Once we start respecting our boundaries and giving ourselves the grace to truly clock out of work each day, we are able to rest well, live well and give ourselves the opportunity to feed our creativity! Be purposeful and thoughtful about what you allow to fill your workday so you have the energy to pursue what you truly value at the end of the day. Giving into a cycle of overwork and overwhelm will only hinder you in your journey to live an intentional and heartfelt life. Here’s to working smartly and setting ourselves up for success in our workday so we can truly invest our hearts into what fires us up!
By Bonnie Bakhtiari for The School of Styling