Like most online businesses, I was under the impression that the heart of my business would be my website. That’s the natural place prospective clients would go to learn more about my business, how I serve my clients, what my ‘flavor’ of service is and learn more about my experience, why they can trust me to do the things I say I can, to read testimonials of how others have found working with me and to experience a taste by signing up for my Free Offer – either my Organization Tips, or more recently My Content Planner…
As an entrepreneur, obviously we are at the heart of our business, without us – there would be no business… but even still – plenty of people are ‘in business’ and not progressing or moving in the direction they want – lots of great ideas, some momentum, sometimes, but not the sustained growth, or full-practices, or increase in income they might desire…what’s at the heart?
I was challenged recently to look at my calendar differently and to schedule my time in a new way; to more clearly define the time I spend with clients and the time I spend working on things for my business, not with actual clients and to actually schedule time where I am not working on my business, in any way at all. The idea seemed ludicrous at first, I’m an entrepreneur, with a home-based business and a two-year old – I’m always working!!! What does time off look like for me????
As I had such a strong reaction to the idea, I knew there was something in here for me, so I began considering new places and ways to look at this whole scheduling thing with a fresh perspective… First I automated clients scheduling time with me – which meant I had to define the times I was actually available and in the office, ready to meet with clients, which means more clarity for me and support from my family and more commitment to specific availability for clients. Yay!
Next, I have to then schedule time with myself on my calendar when I need to be away from my office – such as a DMV visit I have to do next week… the time has to be blocked off on my calendar, so that I am not available for clients to schedule anything – so obvious – but again, the clarity for me, knowing a week ahead of time that I will be unavailable, is huge! I’m PLANNING to do something responsibly, rather than reacting and squeezing it in wherever I can, amidst a huge to-do list and rushing back for an appointment. Such a relief!
So as I experience this change in my perspective, I’m realizing that when I am now in the office – I am more present and more productive and when I am with my daughter, I can really be there and enjoy that time and not be checking email. This little shift in perspective is really helping me to be better at whatever I am doing in the moment, as I know I have scheduled time later to read email or cook dinner… I know it will be handled. It is a little bit of extra planning upfront, but as the self-appointed systems and structure queen, much more suited to my natural style! Admittedly, I am still working on exactly which routine will work best for me, but I am committed to continue this exploration, as I am discovering that for me, the heart of my business is becoming my schedule and what I choose to ACTUALLY commit to on those pages…
I would love to hear your thoughts on anything I have said here, on my website or on Facebook – please feel free to share your thoughts or comments.