How I Schedule My Week To Be More Productivity

Grow Your Business

I am a work at home mom with two toddlers running around all day, clients to work with, appointments to keep, blog posts to write… this list could go on and on. If you run a small business, whether you have little ones or not, your list of to-do’s could be looking like a marathon you’ll never finish. If anyone understands the struggle, it’s me.

Are you struggling to get everything on your to-do list complete? I used to, until I changes the way I schedule my weeks. Now I get more done in less time and I get to do more of the things I love.

Some links in this post may be affiliate links. That means if you make a purchase I may receive a small commission. Don’t worry, it doesn’t cost you any extra to buy from these links.

Why You Need A Schedule

Having a daily schedule is, in my opinion, one of the best gifts you can give yourself as a small business owner. A schedule can help you work more efficiently by focusing your attention on tasks that bring you closer to your goals (learn how I set BIG goals and actually achieve them here). It provides your day with structure and organization, and we all want to be more organized. And most importantly it can make you more productive in all areas of your life.

So how can you cross off those to-do’s, stay productive, and still have time to have a life away from your desk? I am going to show exactly how I schedule my work week so I can get more done and reach my goals. Trust me, this technique has improved my life and business tenfold since I started using it.

Quick note on tools

Before we jump into how I schedule all my tasks I feel it’s necessary to talk about a few tools I use that keep me organized. These tools are not necessary but they do make staying organized easier.

My planner of choice is the Erin Condren Life Planner. I cannot tell you how much I adore this planner. After searching years, and I mean years, for the perfect planner I found Erin Condren through a friend and teacher. Since I have been using it I have been able to stay on top of every daily task with ease. And yes, I love this planner more than any electronic planner on the market. Here in a bit, I’ll show you how I set up my week and you’ll see first hand how helpful the layout is.

The next tool I love and cannot imagine my life without is my trusty outlook calendar. I don’t use my calendar to necessarily plan out my weekly to-dos as much as I use it to schedule my social media and blog posts. I color code each post based on it’s topic and this allows me to make sure I spread my content out. But I do glance at my calendar daily to see which posts are on the horizon. So if you don’t have a good calendar I recommend getting one.

How I Schedule My Week

Time Blocking

I swear by time blocking my tasks to make me more productive. Time blocking is a technique where you schedule like tasks together. For instance, if I need to design graphics for a blog post I will also schedule my social media graphics at the same time. If I need to schedule my social media posts I will also use that time block to comment and reply to others on social media. This allows me to knock out several tasks that are similar all at once. It also helps me stay focused on the task at hand because I’m not jumping around from program to program.

Appointments

Appointment are important to any business, and family. So when I start scheduling my week I always start with the items that are not flexible. Appointments are not flexible and get written down before anything else.

Daughter have a dentist appointment? Goes in first. Client call Monday at 11? Goes in first.

When you schedule these first you won’t accidentally schedule something else in its place and miss an appointment. Also, if it’s an appointment is outside of the office don’t forget to schedule in your travel time to and from (learned this one the hard way).

Morning Routine

This is pretty self-explanatory but worth mentioning. Every morning I go through a ritual to prepare myself for the day ahead. I personally believe everyone needs a morning routine. If you don’t have one already you can read about mine here.

But for this post, schedule your time for your morning routine. Whether it’s 10 minutes or an hour put it into your schedule.

Family Time

If you don’t work from home this may not be a necessity, but if you do I recommend scheduling your family time. Not only does this help give you a visual reminder to spend time with the ones you love but it helps prevent business from flowing into personal time. If you don’t have set business hours I recommend adopting the practice.

Priority Tasks

When I say priority task I am talking about the tasks that make you revenue or move you closer to making revenue. Every business is different but for my priorities fall into one of five categories:

Marketing

Blog

Clients

Branding

Product Development

Under each of these categories, I have a list of tasks that need to be completed. For example:

Using the time blocking technique I take the task lists and group like task together (across all categories) and block out my time. Simple enough so far right?

Here’s what my week typically looks like by the end of this stage:

Here you can see my weekly schedule with all my time block out. Time blocking allows me to be more productive in my business.

Non-Priority Tasks

Non-priority tasks are the tasks that need to be done daily or weekly but aren’t necessarily immediate needs. A lot of our admin tasks would fall into this category. Checking Google analytics isn’t a priority task and can be checked once a week or even less often.

I’m probably going to ruffle a few feathers when I say this but checking email and commenting on social media are non-priority tasks and here’s why: They are a huge time suck! That may sound harsh but you know it’s true. You know once you pull up Facebook to reply to comments you’re going to get sucked in for at least an hour. Same with checking your emails.

These are the tasks I schedule for the very end of my day when I’m probably at my least productive and need to rest my mind a bit. I’m not saying they don’t need to be done but there is a time and place and during your most productive hours is not the time.

Transition Tasks

This may be a new term for you, or I may have just made it up, but transition tasks are the task you do between priority tasks that allow you to process information or get in the right mind frame for your next time block.

Moving from task to task without stopping doesn’t give your mind a chance to switch gears. I don’t know about you but I have to be in the right frame of mind before I can write blog posts. So if I just spend 2 hours doing design work I need a chance to get my mind right before I start writing. This is also helpful for after meetings, webinars, courses etc. because it gives your mind a chance to reflect on what you’ve just experienced or learned.

If you work in an office filing paperwork, cleaning off your desk, taking out the trash, are all great transition tasks because it doesn’t take a lot of brain power to accomplish them.

For us stay at home moms our transition tasks might be loading the dishwasher, folding a load of laundry, or sweeping the floor. These tasks serve two purposes for us: getting a brief break and keeping the house under control.

I don’t schedule these task in my planner but after each time block, I choose a household chore that needs to be done and do it all the while I’m processing what I’ve just done and what’s ahead of me. This is my super productivity tip.

The true secret sauce to being productive isn’t knowing how to schedule your tasks, but sticking with your schedule and being flexible at the same time. Life is life, and it will throw a wrench in your plans any chance it gets. Just remember nothing is set in stone and tasks can be moved around, just don’t move tasks to your family and personal time. Please don’t do that. You need that time.

Did you learn anything that will help you become more productive in the weeks ahead? I want to hear how you’re going to implement these scheduling secrets into your daily life so comment below.

Want to know more about me and why I love helping creative businesses brand with confidence? Head yourself over to my about me page to find out.

Learn how 4 new clients before launching with Brand Clarity.

65 Comments

  1. Great article! I NEED my morning routine and I am still working on making time blocking work for me. I love the idea of transition tasks.

    Reply
    • Thank you, Carolyn. If I didn’t have transition tasks I’d never get laundry done or the dishes washed. This way they get done and I can allow my mind a chance to relax and absorb everything I have been doing.

      Reply
  2. I love your tips about transition tasks and scheduling family time. These are very helpful! Thank you!

    Reply
    • I think Family Time is a sacred time of the day for all of us. It helps us stay connected to the real world and grounds us in the present. Both very important when you own a business. And transition tasks are a great way to just process information or get in the right mind frame for your next priority task.

      Reply
  3. Thanks for sharing your process, I always think it’s helpful to hear how other people schedule themselves! I still have one kiddo at home with me most of the time so I do struggle with being consistent, which is something I’m working on this year!

    Reply
    • It takes some trial and error but once you find what works for you, you will be so much more productive. Hopefully, a few of these tips will inspire you in your quest for consistency.

      Reply
  4. I really like how you broke each part down! I have an issue with not booking enough time in the appointments area and priority tasks and even if I try to schedule extra time in those areas they still run over. I see how I can fix this problem though, I’m going to start scheduling a transition task after. I never thought of this, thank you so much!

    Reply
    • My pleasure Rachel. Hopefully, it will help you. I love transition tasks. I don’t know where I would be without them.

      Reply
  5. What a wonderful break down! I have heard such wonderful things about time blocking, and I really need to start incorporating that into my daily routine!

    Reply
    • Amanda, time blocking is so helpful!! I schedule a time to work on graphics and I will work on blog graphics and client work in the same time block. That way my mind stays in the creative zone,

      Reply
  6. Gosh you are so good at this like you said its not about making the schedule but sticking to it, its funny cause many times i make a schedule and end up not even doing a single item on it. I need to do a lot better!!

    Reply
    • One thing that has helped me is to keep my planner open and next to my computer. That way I can glance over and see what’s next. When I first started doing time blocks I would set a timer to signal it was tie to do a transition task and move on to a new priority. You may find that helpful in the beginning as well.

      Reply
    • Thank you, Wendy. I don’t know what I would do without time blocking. It just makes it so much easier to focus and get things done.

      Reply
  7. I need to be better about coming up with a morning routine! I think it would set the tone for my day so much better if I could!

    Reply
    • I have a post that outlines my morning routine. Before I started mine I was all over the place. Now I am focused and productive. It can make all the difference.

      Reply
  8. Thank you for sharing! I need to reclaim my morning. I’m all over the place sometimes. Being a working mom, it’s hard not to push the snooze button one more time. I’m going to read your post about your routine!

    Reply
    • My morning routine is the best thing I ever added to my day. I am a lover of sleep so it was a struggle at first but once I got into it… It has changed my days and my business.

      Reply
  9. I love reading about how other people plan and structure things and this post DID NOT let me down!

    I underestimated the importance of morning rituals but since introducing a morning and an evening “checklist”, I’ve been so much more productive. No more getting up, grabbing a coffee, doing a bit of work, watching a bit of TV, then getting ready, then going back to work…I have a “start time” and a list of things I get done before that and at the end of my day too to ensure I don’t just work all night!

    Thanks for sharing

    Dani x

    Reply
    • I am so glad it was helpful Dani! I was a hot mess before I started my routines and planning my time effectively. Now I seem to have more energy and I usually cannot wait to get to work.

      Reply
  10. Really good tips! I need to explore timeblocking more.

    Reply
    • It has revolutionized the way I schedule my day. I used to be all over the place during the day and I’d never feel like I’d gotten half of what I set out to do done. Now when it’s time to write I will write a blog post, emails, or and any other writing that needs to be done. It has made it so much easier.

      Reply
  11. This is so important! Sounds like you’ve got it down. I’ll have to follow this!

    Reply
    • There are still days when it’s harder to follow my schedule and get everything done. On those day’s I have to do more reflection about why I wasn’t productive. Once you get the hang of it, it is so much easier to stay on task.

      Reply
  12. Time blocking is huge! I think that and realizing it is okay to outsource childcare for short bits if you need it and can afford it.

    Reply
    • Yes!! If I am facing deadline and I’m not where I want to be I arrange fr my little ones to be with a sitter. This allows me to do longer time blocks and not have to worry about interruptions.

      Reply
  13. These are great tips! I can’t imagine how you get things done with kids around all day. You go girl!

    Reply
    • To be honest it’s not easy, but my kids are getting into my routine so that helps a lot as well. I just try and use my time as wisely as I can to move my business closer to where I want it to be.

      Reply
  14. Thank you, these are great tips, and steps I certainly need to implement! Whether it’s distraction or legitimately brain fog and health issues getting in my way, I definitely need to use tangible scheduling and organizational tools if I really want be productive and accomplish my goals.

    Reply
    • I have days where I just don’t feel it, but then I look at my schedule and my goals and I know that I have to push through. My business is my baby and I have to nurture it and grow it.

      Reply
  15. I love the idea of transition tasks! Sometimes I’ll put dishes away or sweep like you mentioned, but I never thought to actually schedule that in and think about it as dedicated time. I’d also like to suggest another transition task I enjoy: getting on the yoga mat for a few minutes of stretching – such a great way to clear your mind and get re-energized after sitting for awhile!

    Reply
    • Michelle that is a fabulous idea!! Yoga is a great way to relax and recharge our minds. I’m going to have to give this one a try.

      Reply
  16. This is great! I also love to utilize time blocking – it’s the only thing that keeps me on task and getting things done. I’m a perfectionist so if I don’t do that, I’ll be working on one thing all day! lol

    Reply
    • I am also a perfectionist and time blocking is great at keeping me moving along. I could spend all day just designing graphics and never get blog posts written.

      Reply
  17. Great reminders! I find that when I have focused family time, my family is so much more willing to help me out and value my time at the desk. When I start neglecting family time, they are less likely to support my needs as a blogger. Time blocking is key for me as well!

    Reply
    • Yes!! If I spend quality time with my kids after I’m done for the day they d seem to respect my “work time” more. My husband supports me very much in what I do, even though he really doesn’t understand it. But he respects that I know and that I’m good at it. But if I ognored him I don’t know that he would respect it as much.

      Reply
  18. I could definitely be way better at scheduling, especially now that I have been out of college and my days are scheduled by me, not what my classes are like. Thanks for the helpful tips!

    Reply
    • You’re very welcome! I am glad it was helpful for you. If I were you I would start out with just time blocking and see how it works for you. Group your like tasks together at first and see if you get more done that way.

      Reply
  19. I love how simply you lay everything out!

    Reply
    • Thank you Renee. I tried to make it easy to follow and hopefully implement for others.

      Reply
  20. Great tips! Scheduling is practically my life. I’m an admin in my 9-5 and I feel like all I do is schedule. Since I currently blog in my “free” time, I need to schedule when I’m doing what and when.

    Reply
  21. Oooh, you sound so organized! Love it. I’m terrible at being organized. I usually just go where my mind brings me, but that really does not work, haha. I just started a bullet journal and that at least has given me somewhat of a direction!

    Reply
    • A lot of what I do is very much like a bullet journal. I migrate tasks that I don’t finish etc. I just use a planner so I don’t have to create layouts. LOL

      Reply
  22. Great article! I love to time block as well!

    Reply
    • Me too! It makes it so much easier to get stuff completed.

      Reply
  23. I pinned this post earlier this morning. I’m going to have to settle down and get my freelance back on track, now that it’s an emergency for funds. Thank you for the breakdown.

    Reply
    • You’re very welcome. I have tried so many systems to stay productive. This has worked so well for me. I get a lot more done in a shorter amount of time.

      Reply
  24. I just got a life planner and I am loving it! I need to be better about stating on task to be more productive, it sounds like I need to try time blocking! Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
    • You’re very welcome! Time blocking has completely changed the way I schedule my days. I have never been more productive. And yes, the life planner is amazing!!

      Reply
  25. I definitely need to work on scheduling my weeks better! I find myself spending too much time on certain tasks and not getting others done. I love your idea of transition tasks! Thank you for sharing. 🙂

    Reply
    • Transition tasks make my life so much easier. I get housework done and I am able to more efficiently switch between tasks.

      Reply
  26. I have GOT to schedule family or “not work” time! Building a blog can be a 24 hour gig if you don’t find balance. Thank you!

    Reply
    • After about two days of running my business, my husband said: “Do I need to put dinner on your calendar or are going to stop eating?” That’s when I knew I had to define my “work time” and my “family time”. So now I schedule it in and I stick to it.

      Reply
  27. I keep avoiding time blocking, but think I will give it a try now. I also loved your post on the morning routine. It really does make or break the day.

    Reply
    • My morning routine and my schedule are what make my days so much more productive. I don’t know what I would do without them.

      Reply
  28. I absolutely love everything about this post! This is something I really need help with. I only have one toddler so I have no idea how you do it with two! I’m definitely going to use these tips to plan and r ally stick to ,y schedule. Thank you so much!

    Reply
    • You’re very welcome. Sometimes my transition tasks revolve around my kids. Like play a game or have a dance party. It’s not easy but scheduling my day in time blocks helps so much.

      Reply
    • It is the only way I can get everything done. I hope they help you as much as they do me. I am able to get so much more done in my business and in the house.

      Reply
  29. great Ideas, I do scheduling too, I usually use time blocking to make sure I’m productive. As a mom, my kids are still my priority.

    Reply
    • My family is my number one priority too. I make sure I have family time every single day. But I also know if I don’t schedule it I am liable to get wrapped up in a project and go over into my family time. Time blocking in my best friend!

      Reply
  30. These are FANTASTIC suggestions. I am big on time blocking, too. I love your idea about transition tasks; I have a hard time shifting from one demanding task to the next, so having these transitions would be very helpful! Thanks 🙂

    Reply
    • You’re very welcome! Transition tasks have been so easy to implement. They are perfect for short chores that need to get done so you can stay on top of those as well. And my mind has a way to process. It helps us retain information and gives us chance to switch gears mentally. I love them.

      Reply
  31. I definitely need to take these tips into heart! I tend to overload myself way too much. I think time blocking will be a huge help!

    Reply
    • Yes! Time blocking is very helpful. Set aside time for all your writing, all your graphics, all your social media etc. But always remember that if you don’t get something done… move it to a new day. Don’t beat yourself up if you can’t get everything done.

      Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Follow me on Instgram to see behind the scenes as I help creative businesses with their branding
follow me on socail media for branding tips and tricks
send me an email so we can connect and talk about your branding needs

hello@mistyandersondesigns.com

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This