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Do You Know How to Create More Time?

 

5 Simple Steps Will Add Time to your Day so You CAN Create the Business You've Dreamed About

Dear Jane,
I've been dreaming about taking my passion of decorating, and making collage style wall hangings and creating a business. I've read books about how women seem to do this all the time - it all sounds great. But where do these people find the time? With two children under age 12 and my full time job outside the home I can't figure out a way I can possibly do it. Can you please help me? Thanks in advance, Melissa H. Silverdale, WA
 
Dear Melissa,
This is a great question. We live in a fast paced world with demands coming from everywhere - family, friends, children, colleagues and others. Ask anyone if they'd like an extra 8 hours in a day and I guarantee nearly everyone would say YES. The only problem is after the initial celebration, we'd only want more.

Time is the great equalizer - we all have exactly the same amount - 24 hours in a day - period. It's HOW we utilize our time to accomplish our goals that counts.
 
Time is never the reason why you don't do something. It may sound harsh, but in order to maximize your time and create more time you must make critical choices. And once you do that - the sky's the limit. You can do anything you want to in the amount of time you each have.
 
Here's How to Create More Time:
 
1. Evaluate how you're currently spending your time: Do you know where your time is used up each day? Are you setting a daily schedule that includes allotted time for your new business? Whether it is a few hours a week or a few hours a day, schedule time for this as though it was a very important appointment that you could not miss, because what you may be doing is always finding other ways of spending your time that are not efficient. Start evaluating where you time goes so you can determine where you can make changes.

---> ACTION Week 1: This week you're going to do 2 things: 1) Keep track of your time in 15 minute increments all day for a week. This means everything you do whether you're feeding children, making calls, working, answering emails, sleeping or whatever. We're going to evaluate your time spent. Get yourself a small notebook and diligently keep a running total of time spent. 2) Schedule 2-two hour blocks of time where you will get started working on your business. This is uninterrupted time where you have no other commitments or responsibilities. In the first block of time start planning your business model.
 
2. What time could you give away?: That's right I said "give away time" and you ask how can I do that? It's easier and more liberating than you can imagine. Giving time away can be either eliminating a task that is not necessary or delegating a task that you don't like or someone else can do either faster, better, more efficiently than you. This is where you'll make choices - some very clear and some more challenging. 
 
---> ACTION Week 2: This week you're really going to get on to something BIG. 1) Go through your time tracker from week 1 and categorize your time spent. Pick your own categories such as: cleaning house; paying bills; watching TV; shopping/errands; being a parent etc. Add up the time in each category and see where it's all going - and be brutally honest, this is just for you. No one except you needs to know where the wasted time is. I think you'll find some surprises here! 2) Decide what you can give up and what you can delegate. For example if you are spending 2 to 3 hours a day watching TV, you've just found 14 to 21 hours a week you could use to start your business. Or if you want to get rid of paying bills delegate to your spouse - that might give you some time. Also consider hiring someone to run errands or do cleaning. Hiring someone to assist you can be the single most important thing you do. It's a huge mistake to think you can do everything - because you can't. Do what only YOU can do and delegate the rest. Maybe delegate slowly at first - but delegate - and start immediately. 
 
3. De-Clutter your environment: Do you walk around your environment looking at things that need to be done, cleaned, discarded, sorted or filed? And each time you look at the piles or project your mind says, "Oh, I really need to work on that!" and day after day it doesn't happen? Do you know how draining that can be on your energy, attitude and time? Arranging your environment to a pleasant happy place gives you more energy, helps your attitude and creates more efficient use of your time.
 
---> ACTION Week 3: This week you're going to start taking action with your clutter, piles and environment. Take baby steps at first so it won't seem so overwhelming. 1) Select one (and only one) room or area. It might be your designated office; a space that you walk by each day that makes you feel lousy; a living or community space - whatever space you want that really bothers you. 2) Start in a corner and start eliminating clutter, piles and essentially clear the decks. Go around the room in the course of the week putting a timer on for no more than 30 minutes at a time. You will be amazed at how much you can get done in 30 minutes of uninterrupted time.
 
4. How you are organizing your time: Are you currently organizing your week and keeping to a schedule? As you probably know if you have children, they do really well with scheduled activities during the day. This means with bath time, meal times, play time, nap time, etc. I know things have to be flexible with a family but keeping a rough schedule really helps with time management. Also planning in advance activities such as weekly meals mean you can put together a shopping list and do errands all at once. Schedule you week so you have blocks of time for your business and treat them just like you would any other commitment or appointment.
 
---> ACTION Week 4: Now you are going to plan out your weeks, months and entire year - don't panic! This will be easy. 1) Get Planners: a 2 month (60 Day) Eraseable Planner and a Yearly Planner - also eraseable. I like the large ones - you can find them online or at stores such as Office Max. The reason I like the big ones is because I can post them on my office wall and easily see what's coming up currently and the BIG picture all at the same time. 2) Start filling in your year with commitments you already have such as trade shows to attend, seminars or workshops, vacations or other activities so you are blocking off days. 3) Plan your basic week. If you have school age children it may of course be different during the school year and summer vacation. Decide in advance when you are working on your business and when you are doing other activities and schedule them. As you get better at this, narrow your focus so on certain days you only do certain activities. You can choose whatever times you want - and even schedule time off. It's all about what you want.
 
5. Stop Multi Tasking: This is something I have learned over the years and now studies show that multi-tasking really doesn't work. You are better off sticking to getting one task done as far as you can before moving on to the next one. Not only will you get a task completed but you will have the satisfaction of checking it off your list - DONE!  It feels so good to have something completed rather than having loose ends all over the place. And if you have too many loose ends it simply is not productive - schedule a time for tasks or delegate it to someone else.

---> ACTION Week 5: This is easy - 1) Buy a timer and put it on your desk. Set it for 15 to 50 minutes at a time - however long you think a task is going to take you for a task. 2) Work for the designated time only - and only on that one task - nothing else. See what happens - did you judge the time correctly? Did you get off task? Were you tempted? Practice this over and over to learn more about how you are using your time and see how much work you can get done quickly.
 
I'd love to hear how you create more time and learn about what your successes are. Again, remember we all have the same 24 hours in each day - it's all about how you use each day, each hour and each minute. Planning in advance is liberating and allows you to get more of what you really want out of your life.
 
Love & Success,
 
Jane

 

2009 Jane Button International Design2Market Success

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Online creative product mentor Jane Button publishes "Design 2 Market News" a bi-weekly ezine packed full of with tips to help make you money from your Sewn or Knit Product, Design, Gift, or Craft Business. If you're ready to take off the training wheels and turn your creative passion into a profitable business, get your FREE tips now at www.Design2MarketSuccess.com
 

 

 

 

 

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