I was 100% not prepared for March. I told myself I had a “plan” but in reality, what I had was a really, REALLY long “to do list” and very little strategy in place. It can be hard to keep your business on track. So needless to say, I'm glad April is here because I need a breath of fresh air. Like literally. I did not leave my apartment for 6 entire days because I was buried in work.
Moral of the story: don't be like me. As I wrapped up some projects this week, I knew I wanted to get my sh*t together before the new month so I'm better prepared for April. I've always been a planner but I've found that as a business owner, sometimes it's honestly just HARD to plan for everything. New opportunities come up when you least expect it. Great ideas sometimes turn into bad ideas. 2 hour projects can turn into 10 hour projects. If you're not building in a cushion for your workflow, you're always going going going. (Note to self: build in more cushion)
While you may not be able to prepare for everything, you can prepare for some things. It's easy to let the “little things” slip through the cracks – but planning ahead can make your life SO MUCH easier. As I prepped for April I knew that even though it will be a little less crazy, I still need to make sure I have systems in place to make things happen. So here are 3 tips to keep your business on track when you get “too busy” to eat / sleep / leave your home like a real human being.
I'm not really sure what the world was like before technology, and I'm pretty thankful for that. For those of us that don't have time to be on social media all day (that would be everyone, right?), scheduling tools are the best thing ever. I use SmarterQueue, Tailwind, IFTTT, and ConvertKit to schedule / automate a lot of my social media and email marketing which is SO helpful to keep things going when you get busy with work, life, and the unexpected.
Obviously these things require some up front work to run smoothly, but I do find that it's much easier to spend a few hours scheduling things out in advance rather than trying to keep up with doing ALL the things every single day. One of the things I didn't do in March was schedule my Instagram posts in advance, so unfortunately I went silent on the platform for almost a whole week! I was still posting for Mochi and my other accounts, but @elledrouin didn't get a lot of love. I spent a couple of hours taking photos yesterday so I'm better prepared for next month, but I honestly took too many – so if you want 20 free, feminine stock photos – you're in luck!I know a lot of people are hesitant to invest in support, but if you really want to grow your business, there's no way you can do ALL the things. You just can't. People don't build empires on their own.Click To Tweet
Automation is definitely a time saver, but if you can actually delegate business (or personal) tasks, that's even better. I know a lot of people are hesitant to invest in support, but if you really want to grow your business, there's no way you can do ALL the things. You just can't. People don't build empires on their own. I have a virtual assistant who helps with design, a virtual assistant who helps with social media, and honestly most days, I feel like I could hire someone else just to help me keep up with my dog's emails. (Seriously, she gets a lot of emails)
But here's the thing – I don't really believe in perfect balance. I don't actively seek it, because I don't think its a real thing. There just aren't enough hours in a day… even if you're Beyonce. I do think you can “have it all” – just not all at the same time. As Shonda Rhimes says, “whenever you see me somewhere succeeding in one area of my life, that almost certainly means I am failing in another area of my life.” Meaning if I'm really focused on a launch or huge client project, date night is probably not happening. And when I'm enjoying a lazy night watching Bravo tv, I'm also trying to not feel guilty that I'm not catching up on emails.
But that's fine. That's just how it is.
You can't do everything, every day – but you can prioritize so you know that at least you're getting the most important things done every day. I use Asana for project management and I love it because it helps me plan ALL the things I need to do… but on a daily basis it can be a little overwhelming. I mainly look at my tasks using the calendar view and I think because I'm only focused on a few tasks per day and only looking at 1 week at a time, this really helps me feel less overwhelmed even when I know there are 1,000 other things I'd like to get done.
So these 3 things may seem like common sense, but if you're feeling overwhelmed in your business, it's a good idea to take a step back, refocus, and make sure you have the systems in place to keep things running smoothly. Last month would have gone a bit more smoothly if I had been on top of everything, but now I know better and can start April (and the second quarter, eeek!) on the right place!
What are you automating and delegating for your business? If you want to free up some of your time to focus on your work and not on your visuals, I'm sharing 20 free feminine stock photos that you can download below!
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