The Timeline of My Day
I wake up every morning between 4:30 and 5 am. Even if I hit snooze, one of my cats is right there to make sure I really do get out of bed. I change into work out clothes, feed the cats, and head into my basement to climb on my elliptical machine for a 30-40-minute cardio work out. I use this time to think about my day: What are the priorities? What do I want and need to accomplish? And what are my goals? I’ve learned that starting the morning right sets the tone for the whole day.
After my work out, I hit the shower, get dressed, brush my teeth, and even put on make up. Even though I work from home, I have found that starting my morning just as I would if I had to leave the house wakes me up, boosts my productivity, and even helps me to stay focused and maintain a positive attitude
After I take a shower and get dressed, my workday begins at 6:30am. I spend the first 30 minutes of the day reading email, adjusting my to-do lists accordingly, chatting with and helping my team members, responding to client emails and providing project updates to my boss, all while drinking my coffee and having breakfast. This is also when I adjust my priorities and goals for the day based on client and project needs.
Between 7 am and 10 am is the busiest part of my day. This is when I do the bulk of my work. I will work on any projects currently in development, work with our teams accordingly to make sure tasks are getting done, and that we are adhering to content and project schedules. This is also when I make any necessary client calls, and even “meet” over the phone with my boss when necessary.
Around 10am, I’ll take my first break of the day, or as my schedule allows. My “break times” usually consist of doing laundry, cleaning the house, doing the dishes, etc.
By 11 am, things begin to quiet down. Because most of our team members are based in India, their day is long over by this time. I take this time to catch up on emails, and finish up any necessary project tasks for the day.
Then, around noon, I’ll run personal errands, make personal phone calls, and make some lunch. For the second half of the day, I focus on content. I spend several hours each day reading, proofing, writing, planning and managing content for all clients.
Then, by 3 pm and 4 pm, I wrap up my day for my full time job, take a longer break, then I switch gears and focus on my business projects. I answer client emails, plan out the week’s tasks, manage my own team, and even do more writing. I will typically do this until about 5 or 6 pm, and then stop and make dinner.
Most of my clients’ deadlines are at the beginning of the week, so Mondays and Tuesdays I usually work pretty late in the evening. As the week progresses, and as I complete projects, I have more free time for myself after work. I try to go to the dance studio at least one night a week after work, and sometimes I’ll try to get ahead on errands before the weekend.
Of course, all this depends on what is scheduled for the week. Some weeks I have little going on after work, some weeks I’m scheduled back to back, Monday through Friday—no joke.
Most nights, I try to check my email right before going to bed. I know this is a bad habit, but I only do this because if I can answer at least one email at night, then it’s one less thing to worry about the next morning.
Some nights I’ll work until my eyes burn, and until I can’t keep them open anymore. I usually crawl into bed around 10pm, and I typically fall right to sleep, only to get up and do it all again the next day.
By Friday afternoon, I’m usually pretty wiped, but I will try to end my day by 3 or 4 pm, and go do something for me, like go shopping, or go get my nails done, or even go for a pedicure. Then, Saturday mornings I will typically work from 8 am to 12 pm, and I will use this time to catch up on anything I didn’t get to from the week, I’ll do billing for my own business, and just clean up my office. Then, Saturday afternoons and evenings, and Sundays are all to myself.
It all sounds crazy, I know. And when people ask me how I do it all, I just tell them I have excellent time management ability. Yes, finding motivation some days is a struggle, and some days I just feel…”off”. But that’s just working for a living. Some probably think I’m a workaholic, and that’s okay, too.
What most people don’t understand, in my fact I think only ONE person in my life really does understand is that in order to get done what I need to every day, and in order to keep up with my daily responsibilities and keep my business running, this is the only way to do it.
Like I’ve mentioned in previous blogs, when you love your jobs, it doesn’t feel like work. I do it because I love it, and I love what I do. Yes, it’s hard work. Yes, some days are really hard. And, yes, some days I just want to do nothing. But staying motivated, staying focused, and staying disciplined are all key, and always gets me through.