Do you spend all your time serving your customers and put all your own projects on the back burner? I’m so guilty of that. I’ve been working on re-branding the Legacy Designs website for a very long time and serving our customers was always #1 on our list. I’m going to share some tips on how you can free up some time, but the best one I’m saving for last and this is how I found 2 hours a day to get the re-branding project done:
- List all the things you do on a daily basis.
- Look at each day and cross off the things that were not critical and didn’t really need to be done.
- How much time do you spend on Social Media playing those games? (Not guilty of that!)
- Cross off everything that doesn’t contribute to your goals of serving your customers and building relationships.
- Now re-write the list. It’s much smaller is it?
This is how I found 2 hours a day with no effort:
We may only spend 5 minutes checking email, but if you’re checking email every 15 minutes, that’s 2.67 hours per day devoted to email! I’m not telling you stop checking your email, but maybe cut it down to checking email every hour. This tip may not work for everyone, but I’m sure you can make some tiny changes to free up a bunch of time. It was hard in the beginning and it’s not every day, but I’m saving between 2 – 2 1/2 hours per day (depending on how long email replies take).
Give this a try and let me know how it works for you.
Email can really be a time suck! I think not checking it all the time is a great tip, but it’s also important to handle email properly when you do — not reading it and then saving it until later. You have to be able to be efficient at it — deleting, delegating and having systems in place so you don’t spend your new found 2 hours going back through email later in the day.
Hi Cathy, yes you’re right and I setup a filter for each client (by domain name) which goes into a priority box, everything else goes into a 2bread folder. So far, I’m bang on with getting to the important stuff in a timely basis. Setting up with Sprout Social to handle all my social media communications helps a ton. Now I don’t have to sift through hundreds and hundreds of email notifications.
Great ideas to consider. Emails can be such a time sucker if your not careful. Time management is the key and any extra minutes is worth me exploring. Thanks for the tips.
Janell, a few months ago I told my husband and business partner that I didn’t have time to do time management LOL!! yeah, that didn’t last long 🙂
Seems being online certainly does suck our time. I might be making the mistake of having my email open all the time when I am actually online. This way I can see what comes in and respond if it is necessary. I actually cherish the times when I turn off my computer and enjoy some time outside walking and being in the fresh air. Love cloud watching too. The ultimate way to lose track of time. One of my big life issues has always revolved around time. Feeling stress with all the things I want to do and how to fit that into the hours I have. I adopted the mantra “There is always enough time for everything I want to do” and somehow that freed up more time. As Einstein showed us, time is a construct of us humans and that bending time is possible. Sounds like you found your own way to “bend” time and open up more for yourself each day. Appreciate the post, Gisele and the reminder to reassess what is important to us and then to use our time for that.
Beverly, I also treasure the time when I turn my computer off, especially when I’ve had a very fulfilling day. When I wake up in the morning, email is the first thing I check on my smartphone and limit it to 5 minutes to scan for important stuff (while still in bed) LOL!!!
I check my email every 5 minutes. I find that an hour has gone by after checking email. I am going to apply these tips whenI plan my day.
I hope it helps and what are we both doing up at this hour?
I’ve written about this before but to summarize what I found: Multitasking doesn’t save time. It wastes it because every time we change focus to a new item, it takes our brains a little bitty amount of time to make the adjustment. Turning off the distractions and only checking them at specific times is a huge time saver.
I try to make it a point to be unavailable and detached when I’m “off”. I removed my email app from my phone so that I’m not tempted to take a peak and respond to just one more thing. Next step is social media. Great article making the most of the hours we have.
I love the “do not disturb” feature on my phone. Today I’m turning off my Twitter notifications, now that I finally found aa fantastic management tool iI can use.
I have really been implementing the email rule at work the last few months and it’s been great. I simply close outlook and aahhh, so much easier to focus.
Lori, bet you feel a lot better right?
I’m pretty much of a time management freak and one productivity tip I read really helped me. It’s similar to yours. Here it is: Write down all the tasks you have to do. Review it. Then cross everything but the top 3. Guarantee they will be the most important and guarantee that they will be done. Good stuff!
Love it! yes, the list thing I tell my clients to do all the time, she look at me funny but then do the ahhh haaa after 🙂
Email can take up SO much of your day if you let. When I’m good (which I need to be more often) I only allow myself to check 3 time per day. Once in the morning, at lunch time and then at around 3/4pm to wrap it up. It’s amazing how easily we let ourselves get side tracked with that sort of thing
Side tracked, oh yes… when we are in downtime, sometimes I peak over at my husbands workstation and he’s on Groupon, Home Depot, Lowe’s or Rona’s website thinking of the new project he wants to create 🙂 he clicks and clicks and clicks.
These are some great ideas, Gisele. My biggest problem is spending too much time on Facebook (I might miss something! 😉
Carol, I know, it’s hard. I handle social media for clients and if I don’t put a post it note on my screen to re-concentrate on, I’ll get lost.
What a great tip – I will definitely have to give that a try – thanks for sharing!
I try very hard to stick to a schedule and not get distracted by “stuff”. I am definitely at the point where I probably need to set up an automated message on my work email that if someone needs me immediately please call or text my cell. I don’t view receiving an email as “urgent” but apparently many people do. I would never get anything done if I had to check email every 15 minutes.
You’re right, if something is urgent, people can phone or text. Hopefully, they won’t get into the habit of doing that all time though.
Yep.. I’m guilty and I have been working on that. Jackie Harder has a Time Tips group and a paid version that I am part of to help with those pesky distractions! Great read though.
Glad it’s helping you, there are so many tools out there and when you find that one that works, it makes a huge difference doesn’t it?
Here is the l ink to Jackie Harders page in case anyone is interested. I used Sage Grayson’s (sagegrayson.com) Life Editing series. It helped quite a bit and she is such a bubbly, happy person!
Such great tips! I also used to keep my inbox open and check after every incoming email beep. Until I realized I wasn’t able to move on with anything. So most of the time I keep my inbox closed. In fact, I don’t start my day with checking emails either, because I typically start acting on them which means I’m acting on someone else’ priority and not mine. 🙂 So I do something I need to accomplish that day and only then (as a reward) I open my inbox. I read and react on them and close it again until afternoon.
Erika, that’s a great way of approaching this “I’m acting on someone else’ priority and not mine.“. I never really thought about it that way so I’m going to do that experiment tomorrow morning and see what happens. Thanks for sharing that!
I have started closing my Outlook email when I am at work, that helps me stay focused and I actually get things done!!!
Where I struggle in my online business is that I get sucked into the FB newsfeed/Twitter timeline! I am going to stop viewing the timeline/feed at all, and just engage with people personally!
Love these tips, Gisèle!
Hi Natalie….Yes, that blackhole of Social Media 🙁 How setting a timer? I’d probably break it on the first beep 😉