Over the past few months as I am networking and meeting more people, they instantly come to find out that I am very mindful about my time with business and family. The same questions quickly arrises…
How do you do it all with a family?
Well, it hasn’t always been easy and it took (and still takes) a lot of mindful practice, changes, schedule crunching, strict focusing, awareness + so much more to successfully run a family and business! Rewind to two years ago right when I started my photography business full time, I was chasing everything in all directions. Answering emails into the night, phone calls at dinner, editing in the bed, always checking and praying for one single email, one like, one comment, and my schedule was always open for anyone on any given day. Even Sunday, which to this day is one big No-No!
I am happy to share and perhaps guide you to a more mindful schedule with your family and business life! Here are a few things I have tried to be true (some even failed, I’ll share those in another blog next week)…
- Acknowledging you need an adjustment. Just like anything, you need to say you want a change and aren’t liking perhaps your schedule, workflow, etc. You are realizing you need change! That’s great and that’s where I started. Those Sunday’s were heartbreaking when the family was out playing and I had to leave again (since I worked Saturday as well) and missed more moments. This needed to change. Last year I opened my new 2017 planner and told myself “No Sunday’s”. I stuck with it. Sooooo many questions, inquiries, begging, etc. were thrown my way and I remembered those moments playing with family leaving with a heavy heart to then guide my polite response of not working on Sunday’s. Since January of 2017 not one single Sunday has been booked! Staying determined is the key and focusing on why you want this change will instill it!
- Get a planner! A very detailed planner! I personally use and love the Simplified Planner! It was designed and created by a fellow momprenuer with the open spaces for all schedule types to be written in. Pretty stickers are available too! Besides the point, this is used religiously every single day. Especially at the start of the week, I sit on Sunday to begin reflecting on what the week ahead holds. I pencil in what time the kids are brought to school, when they are picked up, whether Devin is days or night (shifter worker), and from there my business schedule is created in between those times. Of course the weekends are reserved for weddings and more flexible in that area but limiting weekday times has been a huge adjustment but so rewarding and a blessing to see my clients in support with respect of my family. After all this is my set business hours and we don’t tell Wendy’s to open up just because I’m off today…
- Set business hours. Really though, it is a must! You don’t need a sign in the yard or to post it on social media, but you need to be well aware of your hours! When will you answer emails? When will you post on social media? When will you wrap up for the day? When will you reserve outside business times (for me photography sessions)? To tackle this, you need that planner again and the knowledge of when you want to work! I personally wake up and bring kids to school for 8:00am. Before then, I open my inbox to see what the morning holds or who I need to answer. Upon arriving home after school, I answer those emails till about my 9:00am. In between that time and school pick up at 3:00pm, I do a variety of things depending on the workflow that day or week. After 3:00pm I’ll answer emails until 5:00pm (usually dinner time) and will be done for the day. Sometimes if the day is busy, I’ll set my phone in another room to not be tempted to answer that ding after hours. Be mindful of your day, your hours, your family, and you will be amazed at how your business hours will be created!
So today is Saturday, I want you to start tomorrow on stating what you want to change in your business and personal life, plan your week out, and set those business hours (those limitations)! Implement this for one week especially the hours, and you will feel and relief in your life and the focus on just business or just family at those moments.
ps – I’d love to hear how you are rocking the momprenuer status or your success with implementing at least one of these tips above!