There are so many people in business who work from home either part time or full time. And right now, just about EVERYONE is working from home as their city, state, or country are on a Shelter-in-Place order. Even for those of us who work at home normally, these times have been especially hard because we usually head out for networking luncheons, coffee connections or other meetings with our clients or customers. In reality, this working at home, stuck at home Ground Hog Day scenario is new for everyone.
I have been finding Mondays especially hard—I don’t know about you. Not only that, I’ve also been having a hard time figuring out what day it is the rest of the week. The inability to get and stay focused seems to be a giant struggle for many of us right now. As a productivity expert, I have been thinking a lot about what my normal morning routine is, and how can I expand this idea of routine into the rest of my day. I have written, spoken, and trained often on morning routines and planning out your day, but at this point in time, I’m finding it’s really important to expand that line of thinking to a three-part routine.
Here’s why. The NUMBER ONE thing you can do to stay focused right now is to create a routine–not only for yourself but for your family! It’s so easy right now to putter around, wander around the house, and not do anything. The other end of the spectrum may be true for some as well—they work way beyond the hours they usually work because they don’t have a reason to take a break, eat lunch, or even stop at the end of the day, so they are spending 12 or more hours working on their business or on their jobs. Many of us are just feeling shocked not able to get a handle on our days. So, my recommendation is to set three routines–Morning, Daily, and End of day. What does this look like?
Step 1: Morning Routine
Your Morning Routine should consist of getting up at the same time every day. I know that it feels vacation a lot of days, or like getting up is pointless, but it’s not! So, get that body out of bed and get going! Practice some sort of introspection–gratitude, prayer, meditation, or journaling so you can get centered. Then, comes the coffee or tea and whatever that looks like for you! For me, I EAT because I can’t wait for food when I wake up! Then, set your intention and choose one to three activities that will make that intention a reality for the day. Oh, and please don’t skip getting dressed like you’re going to work and not just hanging out in sweats—this alone will shift your mind into a new gear and mode of productivity.
Step 2: Daily Routine
Your Daily Routine should consist of what time you start working, taking breaks, and what activities you want to engage in in the morning, early afternoon, and late afternoon. The activities don’t have to be the same each day–just divide them up so you are taking breaks. I also recommend finding a way to have a connection with others at some point during the day, whether it’s eating lunch on face time with a friend, having a group chat, or attending some sort of virtual networking event where you interact with others! Most importantly, choose activities that will MOVE YOUR NEEDLE. Even if the needle isn’t moving now, these activities will move you forward when things start to return to “normal.”
Step 3: End of Day Routine
Your End of Day Routine is what you’re doing to close up shop for the day. Working in the way we are with nowhere to go during the day or in the evenings, it’s easy to just keep working and lose track of time. So decide WHAT TIME work will end for you each day and stick to it! As well, what are the three things you will do to end your day? For example: Send one more email, write your successes for the day, write down the people you want to touch base with the next day… You decide, but make it a routine, and everyday repeat it! This is a GREAT TIME to introduce new habits into your operations!
Speaking of new habits, what a great time to put some things in place that can stay with you when we are able to leave the house and return to some semblance of how we used to do business. Just because things are “back to normal” doesn’t mean we have to do things the way we used to do them! Use this time to find what your routine is, focus during the time you’re working, and get things done that you’ve been wanting, needing or thinking about doing. Oh, and stay visible so your business will keep building.
Good luck with your daily routines, and don’t forget, these don’t just have to be for your business! They can carry over to your family and household as well.
Do you want more from me to #getfocused? Go to JulieMillerDavis.com to get my three-part video series on staying focused and getting things done. #getUnstuck #JulieMillerDavis #BeMoreProductive #timemanagement