What Are Your ‘Good Habit Triggers’?

What are the triggers that result in good habits for you?

Here is something I’ve noticed (on a personal level)… when I take extra time at night to do all of the skin stuff: the exfoliating, the eye treatments, the creams, lotions, etcetera, I wake up feeling refreshed and I eat better and exercise. I have learned that there are little things that I do which result in triggering good behavior.

Image from Wikimedia Commons

Image from Wikimedia Commons

What about in a work scenario? What is it that creates a chain reaction of good work habits?

For me, it’s a clean and organized office. (I must admit: I am not currently sitting in a clean office. EEEK!) It’s creating a strong list of ‘open items‘ at the end of my day so that I’m ready to tackle them the following day. It is taking time to select which items I will work on that day and not getting my to-do list get out from under me.

Everyone has different triggers. Everyone has a different series of events that will lead to a chain reaction of positive behaviors. What are yours? Take some time to think about what makes you more efficient and effective in the work you do.

The Morning

Let’s talk about the morning hours.

First, let me lay claim to the fact that I despise the morning just as much as the next night owl. And, while I may have 2 kids under 5, I can still manage to sleep in until noon if left to my earplugs and night mask. I am NOT by any definition a morning person.

I know many of you are going to GROAN at the idea I’m going to propose here… but hear me out…

You need to wake up earlier (if you aren’t already). I’m not talking about 4am. I’m talking about 30-45 minutes earlier than you’re used to. And, I’m talking to those of you that can’t seem to find the extra time for xyz project that you’ve been wanting to tackle for the last 3.75 years.

Here’s the thing… the morning is when you can crack open a bit of productivity and efficiency. The phone/email/facebook isn’t ringing yet. No one is asking things of you. It’s just YOU and your BIG project. And, if you aren’t awake to use those extra 30-45 minutes, you’re missing out.

{my 17 year old self is crying for me right now – but I’m SERIOUS, people}

I don’t know how many newish business owners tell me that they wish they had more time for their business (aside from their day job)… and how many experienced people say they wish they had time to write a book, launch a new product, reconnect with an outside-of-work hobby, exercise(!), ________.

The morning is when it’s happening.

With just 30 minutes a day on a HUMONGOUS project, you can achieve incredible things. Here is the math:
30 minutes a day x 4 days a week (I’ll let you slack a bit) x 50 weeks a year (2 weeks vacation)
= 100 hours/year

I could likely write a 200-300 page book with 100 extra hours.

What could you do with 100 extra hours?

Share with me below… am I CRAZY? Or, has this worked for you? What have you been able to accomplish with squeezing in some quiet time in the wee hours of the morning?

EASY-PEASY To-Do List Pads Available for Sale

psssstttt…. we’ve got some cool to-do lists available that’ll help you prioritize your daily tasks! EXCITING! But, first I wanna explain the method to my daily madness in hopes that it helps you too…

I have a really simple method for managing my daily tasks and prioritizing. (Folks – it’s ALL about prioritizing!) Here is how I manage my day to day work:

1.) I have a humongous “MASTER” list for 1000s of to-dos. These to-dos are sometimes organized into categories: now, this week, this month, later. And, sometimes (if it’s CRAZY TIME) they may be a massive jumbo of millions of ideas in several notebooks. Here’s the important thing: this MASTER list is NOT where the action happens. It’s just where I capture all my thoughts. (This is the continuous “brain dump” if you follow David Allen’s Getting Things Done.”)

2.) Each day I pick 3-5 things I will work on. THAT’S IT! These are the things that HAVE to happen. (I make sure that I also include at least 1 long-term goal that is not as urgent. Working on something for 15 minutes a day can get me far in achieving a goal.)

3.) I start my day and spend the first 30-60 minutes working on something for myself or my business. Before answering emails and answering the phone, I WORK. (Remember actual work? Not just email answering and fire-snuffing.)

4.) At the end of the day, I spend 30 minutes organizing my thoughts, adding to my master list… and I select the 3-5 things I will work on the next day. I do this so that when I sit at my desk the next day, I have a roadmap and don’t fall to the crutch of my email.

Sure…  there are days that my list has 10 things that HAVE to happen. Sure… there are times that I jump on email first thing in the morning. But, I usually stick to this little system of prioritizing and it does wonders for my day. Give it a try! It’ll make a HUGE difference in how you work.

And now… drum roll… EASY-PEASY TO-DO LIST NOTEPADS!

What will you work on today? These little notepads will help you navigate your daily tasks. It asks you to choose 3 things you want to do for your client, 3 things you want to do for your business, 3 things you want to do for yourself (which includes your relationships). Use this notepad to guide you in your daily tasks. (I do recommend keeping a MASTER list elsewhere.)

The notepads are 50 sheets and cost $12 (includes shipping within the United States). Email me if you want me to ship outside of US.




 

Tell me how you like’m!

Snowy Orange – Bookkeeping, Graphic Design, and Social Media Support for Your Wedding Business

I’m thrilled to introduce you to snowy orange! This is for all of you wedding professionals who need administrative help. It’s for all those loose ends that don’t always seem to get done in your business… monthly bookkeeping, on-going graphic design, and social media marketing.  (andddd… psssttt… they have a cool promotion going on… read on to take advantage!)

snowy orange is a crisp, refreshing alternative to the way you do business. The team at snowy orange is made up of 4 very bright individuals (Tyler, Nicole, Joey, Stephanie) who want to take on these tasks for you. Wouldn’t you rather spend your time focusing on your passion? Your craft?

Here’s a sampling of what they offer:

  • Income and expense tracking
  • Client invoicing
  • Month end financial reports
  • Sales tax reporting
  • Payroll processing
  • Assistance with social media content creation (organization & scheduling)
  • Daily or weekly blog posts
  • Facebook cover photo updates
  • Mailing distribution
  • Postcards
  • Magazine and website ads
  • Image manipulation
  • E-newsletters
  • Media kits and Press releases

A list of services can be found at: http://www.snowyorange.com/what-we-offer/

snowy orange understands that the day to day business tasks can be time consuming and overwhelming so they offer an alternative to the business owner doing everything on their own by creating a partnership which gives them support in a wide range of day to day tasks.

SAGE READERS get $25 off thru July 31st, 2013. Just input the coupon code “SAGE25″ when you sign up!

I’m so excited for y’all to get partnered with them!

Note: Sage Wedding Pros receives a small affiliate fee from snowy orange. Regardless of this compensation, we believe in this company and only endorse businesses we truly believe are a good resource for our readers.

Do You *REALLY* Want Balance In Your Life?

We say we want balance. But, are we really making choices to support the desire? Balance is about setting priorities and boundaries. It’s as simple as choosing A over B on some days and choosing C over B on other days.

If you want balance… choose your family, friends… yourself.

If you want balance… prioritize those things outside of your business.

YOU have the ability to do this. BUT – you have to REALLY want it. AND – you have to actually do it. You have to do it INTENTIONALLY.

Last week Kelly shared her thoughts on balancing your business with your marriage. This goes beyond the occasional “date night”. Be present to those in you life every day.

The New York Times blog You’re the Boss had a column on how entrepreneurs think they want balance, but they really don’t.  (I love this part best: “entrepreneurs get their drive and capacity for work fulfillment from the same brain stimulants that drive heroin addicts to go back to the needle.”  Sound familiar?)

Do you want balance? Share your thoughts below in the comments area.