Talk It Out Tuesday: Coffee Chat
Make Your Day Productive as Hell
Grab your dark roast + join us as we talk about the idea of block scheduling and different ways you can implement it into your business to become a powerhouse of productivity!
Episode 29 Coffee Chat Replay
Episode 29 Podcast
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Lauren Dragon-Cook: How are you guys doing!? Grab your coffee, get comfy… today is going to be super super laid back. We will dive into an area I think a lot of people could use help with.
Let’s get started. I’m going to announce for the first time ever there are some major shifts happening in the back end of my business. When I have a better handle on what that all kind of looks like, I’ll be sure to let you know the details. But all good! All growing! All amazing shifts. I am going to preface that this episode probably will have some profanity in it. That’s how I’m feeling this morning. Feeling like a shit show. So if you have little ones in the room, put some headphones on or watch it later tonight.
Major things are happening, I don’t want to give too much away. But thank you guys. When I have a handle on some of that stuff I will be sure to let you all know. I am getting rid of the stuff in my life and business that no longer lines the fuck up. It just doesn’t line up anymore or make any sense. I finally grew the balls, essentially, and I am cutting that shit out. You are going to see a little bit of a different structure within the group and within the business itself. But all good stuff!
Change is good when we embrace it. It is when we fight it that it become a shit show.
What is Block Scheduling?
Today we are talking about block scheduling. How many of you have heard of it before? How many of you use it regularly? Is it something you have always wanted to try?
Block scheduling for me is something I have been using in my business for probably the last 5 years or so. It has been a major game changer in how productive my days are. You guys that know me well, you know I am all over the place. But when it comes to my business… I’m pretty good because I have a system. It is everything else that is 52 card pick up.
One thing I want to drive home, first and foremost… right away… block scheduling sounds SO RIGID. Right? It sounds like you’re boxed in, literally. It doesn’t have to be that way. It doesn’t! I would encourage you not to have it be so rigid because the frustrations and the feelings of ‘oh fuck I didn’t do that today, oh man I have so much shit…” No! I want you to stop right there.
Block scheduling is what you make it. So for me, it is a lot looser than what you may see on Pinterest. What you may read in other blog articles. I will tell you how my system looks. The LDC and wedding boss life way of things. Its never mainstream.
Typically what I like to do is I have a running to do list. When I am driving in the car or when my kids are about to kill eachother because they are practicing for the WWE and an idea out of the blue comes to me… I have a running list in an app “Wonder List”. You can do this anywhere. On your notes on your phone, they have all kinds of specific note apps you can download. But I like to use “Wonder List” because I can then have it on my computer and front there I am able to check stuff off that I am able to complete. I really like to cross stuff off or check it off to make it feel I accomplished something that day.
Lists, Lists, Lists
I have a running list of stuff. The beginning of each day, I will go onto that list and I will see what needs to get done. This list is EVERYTHING. Everything for the business. It isn’t “oh yeah doctors appointment or go to the dentist…” No. This is… batch content or send an email or check in with those vendors. It is those types of things. I want you to try to keep a separate list for your personal stuff. “Don’t forget to do the laundry… pet medicine”. Keep them separate.
The way I keep them separate is I go into my calendar and I create a thing, I create an appointment and block off the time because for me and Wedding Boss Life especially, my calendar is connected to my booking calendar. So people can schedule a call with me dependent on where I have time in my day. So if I know I need to get the laundry done and I have 17 loads to do then I need to make time for that. How do you do that? You schedule off the time in your personal calendar.
As far as your day to day stuff goes, this is how my typical day looks. I take a look at my to do list and I have it broken up into sections. It is the “someday” (could be 50 years from now, but someday) this will happen. You know why this is good to have? So often we can beat ourselves up because we have all these fabulous ideas as creatives and our brains are always going and sometimes you just need to get that idea, that thought out! You need to put it somewhere! That way you can have more space and more of a creative outlet for you to think of new ideas.
Having a section “someday” is perfect for me. It is where I do my brain dump. I know I need to write this blog post about… but it doesn’t have to be right now, it doesn’t have to be this month. It is for the down time you have. That is one section.
The other section I have is “the week”. I pull the more important stuff and dump it into the week. I do the week part every Sunday. That is my routine, without even thinking about it anymore. You’re coming off of the weekend and it is helpful to know where your week is headed. I don’t know about you, but I like to have a little bit of direction. Then every single day I pull in three items… I give 100% into everything I do. Now I have found over the last few years that when I overextend myself, when I try to tackle a million and seven things during the course of one day, chances are I am fucking exhausted by the end of the day and maybe I completed one thing. But what I did in the process was I managed to open up six other projects. Am I alone on that? Please tell me I’m not alone on that.
Today is one of those days my friends, I just don’t care. I choose three. If I get those three things done throughout the course of the day… fabulous! I can then work on more if I am feeling up to the challenge. But I know that these are the priorities I need to complete.
What I typically do is I break out my day… morning, early afternoon, later afternoon. I don’t do the whole hour thing. You will see some people do “9-9:30am social media… 10:30am-12:30am emails”. I don’t run it like that because having that hourly rigidi structure is overwhelming for me. I just know I need to get THIS done, before lunch. I need to get this done before I go to pick up my kids.
What I would suggest is kind of mentally know those blocks of time are three to four hours each… ish. Depending on if you have children or if you’re working late that night. Knowing you have a good chunk of time to dedicate what you need to do.
I always do my hardest crap first. That is the stuff you will put off until the cows come home. If you can get that done… getting that crap that will be in the back of your mind done immediately, then no matter what you are winning for that day. Instead of having the anxiety sitting on top of your shoulder…
“you gotta do this, gotta do this”.
Then you won’t do anything well! That’s how I am.
One other thing that I think a lot of people fail to do, is designate specific days for things. I do NOT write blog posts every day. I do NOT schedule client meetings on Fridays. I don’t. Fridays become my self care days.
You have to schedule a day for your own stuff. You have to do stuff that is going to fill you up. You have to refill your bucket and recharge your batteries. You have to feel you have a handle and grasps and balance on life. You can’t do that if you are dedicating every single day to your business. Unless you are married to your business, you are sleeping with your business, procreating with your business... you have to find a balance. Otherwise you are going to burn out faster than a forest fire…
Find a day, even if it is just an afternoon. Maybe that is when you schedule your doctors appointments and dentist appointments, stuff for your kids. It is really helpful to know you have that day. I cannot fully commit myself to working a specific day if I know I have a hair appointment. I just can’t focus. I will sprinkle in the stuff maybe I didn’t get around to for that week, for the days I schedule my appointments too. So maybe I need to do a client check in call. That is something I can do in the car, that is something I can do on my appointment days. I would highly recommend doing that.
One thing I learned way bac in the early days of being an entrepreneur is take those phone calls while you’re driving. You are driving somewhere you need to be, why not get some work done while you’re doing it.
Set a Timer and Turn Off Notifications
I’d love to hear what has worked well for you, what tips and tricks you have. One thing I have found that works well for me if I only have a little bit of time to do something (maybe its at the end of the day and I have a little bit of time left) one thing I have found that is super helpful is from IKEA. Love IKEA. It is a little clock timer thing. Set a timer for yourself. When that goes off you know you are done. That way you aren’t having to check the clock all the time. You know you are done for the day. You’ll get to it tomorrow.
Timers and shutting off notifications. The do not disturb function is my favorite thing in the whole world. I’ll often get people that send me an email or text late at night and they preface it “I’m sorry its so late”. But hey, I don’t hear it. Do not disturb is my fav!
I don’t know how people can live in certain Facebook groups. I just don’t know you get stuff accomplished! How do you work? I am so thankful they are always there to answer questions, but how do you deal with all the constant notifications.
There is an app/program called “Station”. Have you ever heard of this? This is a game changer. I started to use it but I haven’t gotten to a place where I’m using it consistently, but when I do use it I feel I am winning at life.
It takes all of your beautiful apps and puts all the ones you use regularly in one place. This way I can be out of everything! I just have what I need open. That way you can’t say “Oh I just need to hop on… blah blah blah”. Station is a beautiful beautiful thing!
Summing It Up
That was today. It was so random and all over the place. Okay. Totally so so random.
Really quickly, I do want to see how all your week’s are going. How are you guys doing? There is a lot of crazy energy at the moment that is happening, so I just want to check in with you guys.
It started yesterday will just feeling really tired. Tired of dealing with the stuff that drains me. Tired of dealing with
There is a lot of shifting that is happening and it is making people feel like they are crazy. Just in the calls I had yesterday with people, people I’ve never spoken to… one person just burst into tears just knowing that it is okay. It will be okay. There will be clam again, this is not becoming the normal. The reason you’re letting all this shit go is because you’re supposed to let it go. That is why you are feeling these things, because you are energetically letting so much crap go. Everybody is.
Fucking love you! Next week… automation! I am so excited! Next week I will be giving you the quick tips and actionable steps to automate your business. If you are using a client management system, let me know! I want to know how to frame this for next week. If you are not using a management system, let me know that too!
That is it! Love you, love you hard. Hide under the covers, I probably will be later on. Its one of those days. Try to have a fabulous rest of the week if you can. I will chat with you soon and thank you for the feedback. Truly, I mean that more than you know! We will see you next week! Bye!
I’m Lauren, your wedding business visionary! I educate wedding pros on the behind the scenes of their businesses through practical knowledge and intuitive strategy. I incorporate my intuitive gifts with solid business strategy to maximize my clients' progress and success.