10 Productivity Tips For Entrepreneurs
Working full-time for myself from home has been the most gratifying, amazing, humbling experiences of my entire life. I’m not going to sit here and say it’s been easy by any means, but it’s taught me an insane amount about myself.
It’s proven to me that I’m even more determined, strong-willed, hardworking, creative and focused than I ever could have imagined.
It’s challenged me in the most difficult ways. It’s knocked me off my feet. It’s tested my abilities to believe in myself. It’s brought me to tears. It’s made me feel like my head is going to explode.
I’ve spent more days than I want to admit wearing the same sweats, rocking dirty post-workout hear and no makeup. I’ve shed more tears of overwhelm and frustration than I want to admit as well. So no, entrepreneurialism isn’t always glamorous and fun, but it’s beyond worth it.
Because it’s also given me freedom and confidence and a life I’m so damn excited to live every day. It’s fueled a fire within me that will never go out. It’s pushed me and made me grow, change and mature.
It’s helped me help women find their highest potential and change their lives.
One of the biggest things I’ve learned through it all is how the heck to stay focused and productive when I have nobody but myself telling me what to do.
So for any and all of you out there that work for yourself or hope to work for yourself one day, here are my tried and true tips and tricks for kicking butt without a “real” boss:
Create a set schedule
I used to try and just fly by the seat of my pants each day and I would end every day frazzled and close to tears. I would always have so many things I could work on but could never pinpoint one thing for long enough to actually feel accomplished. Now I schedule my week’s out on Sundays on my Google calendar and it has completely changed me as a businesswoman. I color code based on…
General work (blog posts, preparing for clients, social media work, creating content for clients, emails, recipe test, etc.)
When it comes to “general work” I always specify exactly what I will work on at certain hours. I’ll label “emails,” “Pinterest work,” “blog post writing,” “prepare for clients,” “recipe test,” etc. I even schedule in when I’ll eat lunch, when I’ll take walks, etc. I no longer wander around wondering what I should be working on. Of course, life throws you curveballs and sometimes schedules changes, but this at least acts as a backbone.
2. But make sure to schedule in self-care and breaks
One thing my Google calendar has actually helped me with is making sure I take time for ME every day, no matter how much I have to get done. I always schedule in time for lunch and dinner and at least one walk break each day. Because it’s written down on my calendar as a part of my work day, I actually take those breaks instead of just working through them. I used to get total “break guilt” which I think a lot of entrepreneurs do. When you work for yourself it’s easy to fall in to the trap of feeling like you have to prove that you “actually work.” Just know you don’t need to prove anything to anyone and you sure as heck don’t need to work for 12 hours straight with no breaks.
3. And remember that taking breaks helps you work better
And on that note – taking breaks is one of my biggest productivity tips! I used to try to just hustle all. day. long. Because MORE hours spent working meant better results, right? Wrong. Once I made time to take a couple of small breaks throughout the day – to take a walk, facetime a friend, make a snack or midday drink – I was able to work so much more efficiently because I wasn’t so burnt out.
4. Have a dedicated work spot at home
Before I had my office set up at home, I would float around the house working – in my bedroom, at the kitchen counter, on the couch – and I could never get in a good work groove. Having a space that you’re able to call your own just for work, leave your projects out on, etc. helps you stay on track and helps you set work-life boundaries as well!
5. Switch up locations
But, on that note, switching up locations can really help when you work from home. Once or twice a week I take work to a coffee shop because the new environment helps me concentrate and be more productive. Sometimes feeling like my daily routine is mundane makes me feel bored in my work. Shaking things up always reenergizes me and kicks my creativity into gear.
6. See other humans
Working from home, especially for yourself, can get extremely lonely. Make sure to take time to schedule coffee/lunch dates with friends and working dates with other self-employed or work-from-home friends to make sure you stay connected to the outside world. Even going on a walk in a busy park or working at a coffee shop can help. Just being surrounded by other people helps take a bit of that loneliness away.
7. Set weekly goals
As an entrepreneur it’s easy to feel like you’re brain has 1,000 tabs open all at once. Once I started making smaller weekly goals, instead of always looking at the giant picture, it helped me stay on track and get bigger chunks of work done, rather than taking tiny chips away at 50 projects.
8. Focus on one idea at a time
Similarly, focus on one project at a time (or at least try to). I have the tendency of being only halfway done with one project or idea and already starting on another. Keep yourself accountable and finish one task, goal or project before distracting yourself with another. Your ideas will always be there!
9. Wear whatever the heck you want
I see so many entrepreneurs or individuals that simply work from home shouting the importance of actually “getting ready for the day” in order to be truly productive. I call b.s. ya’ll because I’m definitely most productive when I’m in comfy clothes. Don’t feel pressured to get all dolled up just to prove you’re a workin’ woman (or man). That’s one of the best perks of working from home in my opinion! Find what makes you feel most productive. For me that’s yoga pants and big sweaters.
10. Squash the self-doubt
This is by far my biggest tip. If you’re an entrepreneur, you know that self-doubt can easily sneak in. It’s so dang hard to push all fears away, but it’s so important. You can’t run a successful or positive business if you’re always worried about failure or the “what if’s.” So, squash the self-doubt and believe in yourself wholeheartedly.
I hope these tips can help you thrive as a stay-at-home-worker and/or entrepreneur! Just remember – it’s not an easy path, but it’s one of the best, most growth-filled paths you can take.
You’ve got this. Remember that.
And if you are also growing a wellness-oriented business and ever feel like you need a little guidance on your entrepreneurial journey, I would absolutely love to help. You can check out my 1:1 business and branding services here. Whether you just need a one-time call or an extended 1:1 program, I’m here to help!