Productivity Tips for At-Home Entrepreneurs

I often tell my friends that I became my most productive once my daughter was born.

Yep. I used to get a lot done earlier as well and I’ve always enjoyed planning and prioritizing, but I took it to a whole new level once Manini was born and once I started working online.

Why?

Because I didn’t want to spend every waking minute wondering what needs to be done.
Because I didn’t want to let important things slip through the cracks and frustrate me later on.
Because I wanted to spend most of my time with my sweet girl and husband and still get both home and work done.
Because I want to conquer the world, one minute at a time. 😉

Yes, I know. I like to dream big 😉

Speaking of dreaming big, today I want to share with you how Mayank and I have built a business that is our full time income earner while being at home, thanks to some simple yet super effective productivity tips and strategies.

Because am sharing 15 tips to help you save 60 or more minutes every week.

Think about what you can do in those 60 minutes. I know!! Exciting, right?!

Here are some of my fave ways to spend the fun time I free up:

Bake a cake or some cookies with the kids {that’s my fave!}
Go to the spa for a massage or to the salon for that long overdue mani-pedi. {that’s my 2nd fave!}
Write up a blog post
Work on your business vision and plan
Journal
Read a book
Go to the beach or the park for some quiet time
Meet a friend for coffee or organize a play date
Watch a movie, snuggled up with your family
Sleep!

I know, you’ll have lots that you can do in that extra hour or more that you’ll get, so without much ado… dig into the 15 ways you can save 60 minutes or more this week {and every week after this!}

 At-Home Entrepreneurial Productivity Tips to Take Away: 15 Ways to Save 60 Minutes {or More!}

1. Set Up Systems for the Home

This is our biggest sanity saver. Mayank and I have, over the years, fine tuned our systems for the home and still tweak and test to ensure that not only is our home and health well-cared for but we still get enough time to easily work on your business.

We work full-time so that means on a given day, we need anywhere from 8 to even, 10 hours of work time.

However, we also, enjoy eating meals made from scratch, entertaining at home, going out as a family and keeping a home that’s warm and welcoming.

So, enter systems.

Here’s a quick overview of the systems we have in place for our home:

Menu Planning: Done every Sunday and planned for all 3 meals, 7 days a week.
Laundry Washing, Sorting and Folding: Laundry washed every day, sorted into to-iron and to-fold everyday. To-fold laundry folded once a week when I’m watching my fave TV shows 😉
Cleaning and Organizing: This is a bigger system broken into smaller pieces of daily, weekly, monthly and yearly. It needs a post of it’s own to explain how it works 😉
Grocery Shopping: Done both weekly and monthly.

2. Plan and Prep for Your Day… the Night Before

One of my sneaky productivity boosters is that as far as possible, I never enter a day without a plan. Yes, I know that makes me sound really fun;) but hear me out.

As a mom and a home manager who also, has a full time business to run, I only have so many hours that I can dedicate to it. Knowing what I need to do helps me keep my head clear and also, get more done without getting sucked into work.

Here’s how I plan and prep for my day the night before:

  • Clear my desk and pack my laptop away.
  • Review week’s goals and to-dos.
  • Note down next day’s to-dos.
  • Check monthly calendar to see if anything important is coming up. Plug that in.

It barely takes me 5-7 minutes and I feel SO much better when I sit down to work the next day.

Try it.

3. Hire Out Work

You know this was coming, right? You’re human {even though I like to joke I’m not ;)} so there’s only so much you, alone, can do.

At home and at work, see what chores, tasks, projects you can delegate or hire out.

At the same time, I know when you’re starting out it can be challenging to hire out work, however, you can trade or ask a family member to pitch in with home-related chores. I’ve done it.

At the moment, we’ve hired out our graphic design needs, our administrative needs and even, our cooking and cleaning. Does it eat into our budget? Financially yes, but productively, it’s the most freeing thing ever.

4. Automate All You Can

Automation is an at-home entrepreneur’s new best friend. No kidding.

Here are a few of the things I’ve automated:

Marketing activities, like engaging with everyone who signs up for our FREE cookies via autoresponders.
Social media sharing. Buffer, I love you so.
Bill payments. Umm, direct debits anyone?

You can automate a whole lot once you start to think about it and focus on it. It is definitely not set it and forget it but it is a lot easier than having to do things every single day.

5. Batch It Out

I’ve shared my love for batching tasks earlier as well. I love being able to knock off emails in one go, article writing in another and networking in a third.

It also means that I can give my undivided {or somewhat so!} attention to whatever I’m working on.

6. Scale It Back

Sometimes, you just need to scale back and step into the season you really are in. As an at-home, family entrepreneur, your position is different from everyone else. You may have a sick kid, a husband who travels, a child with special needs, a homeschool schedule that requires deeper involvement.

So, scale it back a bit and breathe easier.

Don’t get sucked into visiting Comparisonville. It’s lonely and sad there. Trust me, I’ve visited and I never want to go back.

7. Find {and FIX} your Time Wasters

We all have these. Sneaky little things that eat away at our precious time budget. Find them and fix them.

Some of them include:

  • Faffing around on Facebook, not getting any actual work done.
  • Going down the rabbit hole of Google or Pinterest in the name of research.
  • Opening up your email every 15 or 30 minutes.
  • TV Channel surfing

In the interest of full disclosure, these were my time wasters  and over the years, I’ve had to fix them so that I enjoyed my time intentionally.

8. Have a Morning Routine

If you only do ONE thing out of these 15, let it be this one. Seriously. Life changer.

My morning routine is what keeps me sane, motivated, inspired and focused. The day I don’t follow it is the day I’m stressed, pressured, cranky and frankly, quite a  mess. Yes, I’m THAT dependent on it.

Your morning routine doesn’t have to be complicated or long drawn. Just 15 minutes can do.

9. Use Your Waiting Time

Have you ever waited in line at the school pick up?
What about the dentist?
How about when you’re taking the subway?

All those “pockets” of time can easily be used to catch up on listening to a podcast, reading a book, replying to emails or knocking off some small task that would otherwise need doing when you’re at home.

10. Make Time do Double Duty

This is another of my faves. I don’t multi-task but I do make time do double duty with intention. How?

I combine two tasks, one of which doesn’t need my undivided attention at all.

Like folding clothes while watching TV. No prizes for guessing which one doesn’t need my undivided attention;)

11. Use a Timer

If you’re like me an enjoy a challenge or a in fact, a good game, you’ll love the timer tackle.

It’s pretty simple. Set a timer and focus on the task only stopping when it buzzes. You’ll be surprised at how much you get done when you really, truly focus.

12. Have an Evening Routine

Just like a morning routine is critical to help you save time the rest of the day, the evening routine is vital to help you feel rested yet refreshed.

Simple things like shutting down your system, reviewing your next day’s plan, lighting a candle or diffuser, making and drinking a cup of tea {or coffee!} or going out for a run are small yet powerful ways of signaling that your day is done and you’re ready to renew, recharge and rest.

13. Put On Your Oxygen Mask First

You know how they say {I can never figure out who “they” are!} that you need to take care of yourself before you can take care of others. Well, they are right.

Just like in the airplane, they tell you to put on your oxygen mask first before helping your child or co-passenger, as an at-home entrepreneur, you need to take care of your own self first.

Nope, doesn’t mean you’re selfish. It means you’re self-sufficient. Taking care of yourself, in whatever way you can, will give you the energy to take care of others and get more done with ease and without stress.

You’ll have better focus, greater clarity and more willingness to do what needs doing when your oxygen levels are met.

14. Say No. No, Seriously.

Want more time in your day?
Say no.
Really.
It’s tough, I get it.
I have a chronic people-pleasing, say-yes-to-everything condition so it is super tough for me. But if I can do it, so can you.
Say no to anything that doesn’t align with your life or business goals or even, your life’s season at the moment.

Want to make saying no easier? Use text or email. I don’t know about you but I find it near impossible to say “no” to someone in person or even, over the phone.

15. Focus on the Important

Finally, and most importantly, focus on the important. The secret to getting more done or creating more time in your day is to know what needs doing.
Is what you’re doing right now really important? Or is it just something that you think you need to do?

Productivity Tips for Work-from-Home Entrepreneurs

If you’re ready to add even more superpowers to your productivity, stay tuned for the
Ultimate Homemaking Bundle.

Why?
It’s got everything you need to make managing home a breeze, including my bestselling {and newly updated} How to be a Work-at-Home Mom eGuide that’ll give you everything you need to start and succeed with an at-home business.