A Week In My Life: How I stay focused and get it “all” done as an entrepreneur

A Week In My Life: How I stay focused and get it “all” done as an entrepreneur

Day In The Life Of An Entrepreneur

Sunday Routine

Here’s what I do:

  • Read my quarter goals that are written on a big calendar in my office. This helps me start the planning process with an intention and it reminds me of my goals.
  • Look at my calendar (Google Calendar) to see what appointments I have for the week. This allows me to see what’s coming up this week.
  • Fill out my Full Focus Planner. This allows me to plan for the entire week and get super clear on what the important tasks are.
  • Review my task management system (Click Up) to ensure that all tasks assigned to the upcoming week are aligned with the tasks that were just outlined in my Full Focus Planner work.

Morning Routine

Here’s what mine looks like:

  • 5:30am — 6:00am: Wake up. My alarm goes off at 6am but most of the time I’m up before the alarm. My dogs wake me up every day as if they’ve never eaten before and will starve if I don’t feed them ASAP. I love them, but sometimes I wish I could just hear the alarm.
  • 6:00am — 6:30am: Get ready. I do all the normal things: Brush my teeth, hair, get dressed, etc. But what I’ve started doing this year (and I really hope it sticks — hold me to it!) is I’m started writing something on my bathroom mirror. My word of the year is “enough” and it has so many meanings to me, but the one I’m writing on my mirror currently is “I am enough”. I look at myself and in true Mel Robbins fashion, I high five myself and tell myself that I am enough already today even though I haven’t done anything work related. I am enough.
  • 6:30am — 7:00am: Move my body. I have a movement practice every day and I’m so grateful that this is now a very easy habit for me. It wasn’t always this way. I would start but was never super consistent until a year and a half ago. I made a birthday promise to myself to see “can I hold myself accountable to move my body for just 10 minutes a day, everyday and not tell anyone about it?” I succeeded in half of that idea. I moved every day for at least 10 minutes for one full year. But I ended up telling two people during that year: Michael because we talk about everything and Megan, my private yoga teacher. Both were proud and let me continue to hold myself accountable which was great. And I found that mornings are better for me so now it happens every day and I don’t think anything about it. Some days it’s 10 minutes of yoga, some days it’s 30 minutes of strength work, some days it’s 15 minutes of dancing around. The rule is 10 minutes of movement. Period.
  • 7:00am — 7:10am: Drink. That’s right, I drink. First it’s 12 ounces of Athletic Greens to get my vitamins in and then I pour some yummy coffee. When it comes to breakfast, I don’t have a routine with this. I love breakfast, but sometimes I’m not feeling it and sometimes I am. I’m sure this is not a good thing but it’s real life. I eat sometimes and sometimes I don’t. This is also the time that Michael and I chat about what’s happening in each other’s day. If we have time to have coffee together we will, otherwise we chat for a few minutes and get to work since we both work from home. I love that!
  • 7:15am: Work. It’s time to get to work at this point so I head into the office and get after it.

Start The Work Day Routine

My “start the work day” routine:

  • Review Full Focus Planner: I review what’s on deck for that day or write it out if I didn’t identify it the day before.
  • Start what’s open: Once I open my computer the task of the day is often open. I set this up during my “wrap up the day routine” which I’ll share about more in a minute.
  • Positive Mood Setting: My lighting is generally low and I have an easy-going playlist ready to hit play on. I often light a candle in my office too and when it’s cold out, I’ve got a space heater ready.
  • Tackle my MIT first: Knowing what my most important task is and how it relates to my 90-day goal is key for making every day count.

Wrap Up The Day Routine

Here’s what my “wrap up the day” routine looks like:

  • Full Focus Planner Review: I open up my planner and make sure I’ve crossed off all the must-do items. If I missed something I make sure to assign it to a different day. I write any notes about the day that are floating around in my brain so I can close out the day with them written down.
  • End of day email sweep: Like I said before, I look at email one more time before I put my computer to sleep
  • Open up anything I will start with the next day: When I log into my computer the next day, I want my first task to be open so I can’t get distracted. If it’s an email I need to write, the Google Doc is open. If there is any way for me to kickstart my day as soon as I open my computer, I will get it ready!

How do I determine when to end my work day?

But my answer to how I determine the end of the day has two parts:

  1. Pick a time and stick with it, and
  2. When your MIT for that day is done, call it quits and celebrate that.

Daily Focuses

Here’s what my daily focuses look like:

  • Mondays: Thrive Days! I realized that most yoga teachers have more flexibility on Mondays, so I do my best to have my Thrive calls on Monday’s now. I wish I could accommodate all time zones across the world, but it doesn’t work out Generally speaking, Monday is a better day for me to host live calls for Thrive. If I don’t have live calls, I’m working on Thrive projects and tackling my MIT for the week.
  • Tuesdays: Coaching Call Days! This is when I have my one-on-one coaching calls. I have 1 and 2 hour call options for Thrive members and if you aren’t in Thrive you can book a call on my website and you then get access to Thrive as part of your follow up after the call. It’s a win-win! And it helps me stay super focused to have these on a specific day of the week. I have monitored how many calls I can have in one day and over time have realized what my limit is, and that’s been super helpful too. *Calls also happen on Thursdays sometimes as well.
  • Wednesdays: Podcast Days! I have guest interviews, I record my intros and outros, I prep for future episodes, etc. All podcast work happens on this day and it really helps the podcast team because my editor knows when to expect things from me and everyone knows when I’m heads-down in podcast work. I generally work at least a month ahead, so this rhythm has really worked out!
  • Thursdays: Flex Days! Like I mentioned, I sometimes have coaching calls on Thursdays as well, but the majority of the time this is a day where I work on projects. Each quarter I outline what I will focus my energy and effort on that quarter and that usually includes a few projects I need to dedicate some deep work to. This might be Thrive trainings, or a presentation I’ve been asked to give, etc. Since my day is open, I’m able to dedicate long periods of time to deep work. If you aren’t familiar with this concept, read the book Deep Work by Cal Newport. It’s a good one!
  • Fridays: Admin Days! By the time Friday rolls around I’m spent, so this day is dedicated to the tiny tasks that have popped into my head throughout the week. This is when I will take care of things like customer service stuff or cleaning up my email inbox for more than just 20 minutes. This is a catch-all day for the tasks that need to get done but don’t necessarily require all kinds of creativity or brain power. I also have this day free of meetings so I know I can always take the day off without having to shift meetings around.

Work Day Routines

Email

So here’s what I do for email:

  • Morning email sweep: Set a timer for 20 minutes and I get through as many emails as possible in that timeframe.
  • Afternoon email sweep: Set a timer for 20 minutes and I get through as many emails as possible in that timeframe.
  • End of day email sweep: Set a timer for 20 minutes and I get through as many emails as possible in that timeframe.
  • My rule for emails: Do it, Delete it, Delegate it. I mentioned this in last week’s episode #131 too and it’s been super helpful. I only touch an email once, so I can only open it if I have time to take action with it. Otherwise it stays unread.

Social Media

  • Set a timer
  • Answer questions
  • Schedule posts
  • Get outta there!

So here’s what I do for Instagram:

  • I am allowed to look at Instagram after I get my MIT done.
  • I then use Instagram as more rewards throughout the day and check it after I complete another task. Anytime I check Instagram I do my best to stick to 10–15 minutes. I fit this in when I don’t want to start another project before my next call, etc. And each time I look at Instagram, I engage with someone. That’s my rule, if I have time to scroll, I have time to cheer someone on or respond to something inspiring.
  • I typically look at Instagram once again in the evening sometime when it’s just down time and I’m not working. Sure this may seem silly since it’s not part of the work day anymore, but it’s when I get to scroll and consume content that is inspiring for me and see what my students are up to.

Time Tracking

What does my lunch break look like as an entrepreneur?

How do I avoid distractions throughout the day?

There’s TONS of research on this topic and here’s a few key findings:

  • We can only stay focused on something intensely for about 50–90 minutes before needing a break (52 minutes specifically according to this Inc article)
  • We often have the capacity to work productively 4 to 5 hours a day (Wired article)
  • We use Hue lights in our house and I turn the light in the hallway outside of my office room to RED when he cannot come into the room.
  • If he comes into my office and I don’t stop working and turn away from my computer, he knows I’m in the middle of something and can’t stop. I’m not ignoring him, I just can’t stop mid-sentence or mid-work and he knows to walk out and I will come talk to him when I’m done. If he needs something urgent he will talk when he walks in.
  • When my step kids were in school and still lived at home, I ensured that I didn’t have meetings or recordings of any kind at the time they came home. I could have them later, but this allowed them to come in and say hi (and I could continue working if needed after we caught up).

Day In The Life Recap

Your next step

Until next time, embrace your day in the life as an entrepreneur and give yourself grace along the way.

About Amanda McKinney (Marketing Coach for Yoga Teachers)

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