If you’re an entrepreneur, you’ve probably had more early mornings and late nights than your fingers and toes can count.
Studies show that most successful people get up in the wee hours of the morning. In fact, there’s evidence of the direct relationship between early birds and their meteoric rise up the corporate ladder.
After all, an hour’s worth of productivity in the morning often trumps two hours of work in the afternoon, at least for early birds.
Hence, if you consider yourself part of this category yet still struggle to carve out time for yourself, here are five practices you can add to your routine to do just that:
Taking Control of Emails
Ugh, I know. Emails can be draining especially if you receive at least 100 work-related messages on a regular day. Answering all of them may even take up to four hours of your time on a daily basis. Yikes.
Fortunately, it is possible to spend not more than 90 minutes doing it.
Start by setting a limit on how often you read and answer your emails. Say, twice a day.
Aside from that, it also helps to avoid reading emails until you’ve accomplished at least one important task for the day. Moreover, resist getting involved in email conversations or concerns involving issues that can be resolved without your input.
Lastly, keep your emails short and direct.
Limit Your Phone Conversations
Unnecessary phone calls are also another time waster. Not all matters and concerns need to be addressed over the phone. Sometimes, SMS messages will do.
Hence, except for emergencies, it’s ideal to schedule all your calls once a day. Inform your clients and/or employees that you can be reached at a specific time if they really need to talk to you on the phone.
By bunching all your calls together, you can ensure that each conversation will be short yet meaningful.
And because there’s a small window of time allocated each day, both parties are more likely to cut to the chase.
Learn to Delegate Better and More Often
No one can do everything regardless of how great they are. This holds true, especially for entrepreneurs like you.
While it’s tempting to micromanage, it’s best to leave certain tasks to your team members. This is the best and most efficient way to add extra time to an already jam packed day.
For instance, rather than creating social media campaigns on your own, why not hire a social media manager? Or instead of stressing over your unorganised schedule, have a virtual assistant manage your appointments and your daily calendar.
In other words, delegate menial or tedious tasks to your subordinates so you’ll have more time to do work that only you can do.
Reduce Time Spent on Personal Maintenance
Do you really need to spend 30-40 minutes on your coffee or cigarette breaks?
Aside from being unhealthy, these habits tend to take a lot of your limited time. Hence, if you care about your health, better reduce your cups of coffee or cut off cigarettes completely.
On another note, you can also reduce the minutes you spend in a hot shower every day. Instead of 45 minutes, make it 30 or even less.
This way, you don’t just save time, you also save water and energy.
Learn to Say “No”
“No” is a short yet complete sentence. Ironically, it’s also one of the hardest things to say.
You’ll continue to waste your precious time if you don’t know how to use this.
For instance, you’re invited to expand in a new city. However, you’re sure that your target market isn’t there. But instead of politely but firmly saying no to the offer, you tag along for the fear of possibly missing out. Inevitably, you end up wasting your time.
Hence, if you won’t say “no” to the wrong things, you’ll continue to fill your time doing work that won’t necessarily lead to the right ones.
At the end of the day, you can accomplish greater things in life if you can make each hour count. And it sure does help if you start each day early.
Remote Staff has been assisting Australian SMEs and entrepreneurs like you with the help of our remote workers from the Philippines since 2007. Aside from hiring and finding the best people, we also provide onboarding assistance to give you more time for more important matters.