5 Time Management Tips For Home Business Owners

You want to market your business, but do you have the time? Here are five nuggets of time management wisdom I personally use in my direct response copywriting business.  And here’s the kicker, I really only “work” no more than about four hours a day because of these strategies.

1) The foundation is your desk. How clean and organized is your desk? Do you live by a “use it, file it, or throw it away” mentality with every single item (paper, email, etc.) that comes across your desk? You either use information, file it (only if you have time-stamped when you are actually going to use it), or toss it.

2) Magazines, do you really read them? Or do you let them stack up, hoping to get to them “someday.”  The secret: Use tables of contents to find articles you like right away, and rip them out. Then, read the article(s) now, or file the article in a folder for that magazine subject or title.

3) Do you listen to audio recordings? If so, try listening at double speed (2x). In 99% of the cases, you can still understand what is being said, it doubles your efficiency in getting information, and cuts your listening time in half.

4) How organized is your office? Is your chair in easy reach of filing cabinets, supplies, and other necessary items without getting up? Getting up and down for only a few seconds each time adds up very quickly; so this technique alone can save you an hour a day.

5) How do you process interruptions? Do you check email 20 times daily, or, at just three specific times of the day? Do you schedule phone calls, or do you pick up the phone and answer it every time Aunt Mabel calls? How you handle these “attention-grabbers” can seriously chew up time.

Remember: NOBODY AND NOTHING control your time except YOU!

So now that you’ve read this, don’t take it out on others when “you don’t have enough time.” 🙂

The One Question You Can Ask That Can Change Your Life…

We’re conditioned from an early age to “just conform”, “just trust the government”, “just get a secure job”, and “just deal with it.”

I used to follow that path.  In fact, up until 2001, I was drinking ALL the “kool-aid” of the typical conditioned lifestyle.

Then I asked the most powerful question I think more people need to ask themselves (and other people), so a different perspective starts to take place.

The question is “Why?”.

Some examples…

  • “Why do I need to run across the house to answer the phone every time it rings?” (answering machine or voice mail anyone?)
  • “Why can’t I express my creative ideas?” (no one said you couldn’t, and if they did, they’re idiots)
  • “Why do I feel prisoner to a job I hate?” (that’s your choice, and your choice alone)
  • “Why am I relying on someone else (employer) to provide the lifestyle they dictate I’m limited to?” (again, your choice)
  • “Why can’t I just go out and have a better life?”
  • “Why do I let other people manage my time?”  (it is your time, isn’t it?)
  • And on…and on…

So start today, start asking why…challenge the status quo according to other people, stop and smell the roses…and live the life that is yours (and no one elses).

Because if you don’t live your life, other people will be happy to keep dictating how you live it.  That I promise.


Living For Life’s “Little Moments”…

Some people work so damn hard for so little reward it saddens me to watch it.

  • Cramming project after project (some not even at work), just do “get them done”…doing them in quantity…all for a “little break” at the end.
  • Spending 10 – 40 years (or more) of their lives working for some “big company” that doesn’t even know they exist…all for a tiny bit of recognition that fizzles in minutes after they receive it.
  • Working 40-plus hours a week at some job they hate, then holding that up as a status symbol of their sacrifice (for what?).

And on, and on…

I think we need to turn the tables as a society.  To start the process (a process I’ve completed myself)…I want you to ask yourself a few questions:

  1. Do you really think of yourself and your family / friends first when using your time?  Or does it seem like everyone and everything else fills that time for you?
  2. Are you really satisfied with busting your knuckles (figuratively or literally) every week for little to no real recognition or reward?
  3. Can you do what you want, when you want to, without worrying about “all the other commitments” you seemingly have?
  4. Does life seem like it moves way too fast, leaving you with a daily feeling of “I wish I could have done ______” ?

Think about these questions today, and keep in mind one lesson that could change the way you think about life (if you let it)…

There is always one person in control of the time you have on this planet during your 70 or so trips around the sun…it’s either you or someone else (and the choice is always yours to make as to who that is).

So quit living for the “little moments”, and start choosing to live for big ones.

Living Life Like A Dog On A Chain…

The boss calls…you have to give up your dinner again…

…the doctor needs you to do those tests on Friday…

…the phone rings and you’re on the other side of the house…

…you just gotta send that text NOW, because who knows what would happen if you waited for an hour…

…sacrifice, sacrifice, sacrifice…

Living life like a dog on a chain is great right?  No?

Anyone who says you HAVE to live life this way is feeding you a steaming pile of cow dung…period.

And, on top of that, there is only one person to blame when you feel like you’re being “pulled apart” by life in general…or when it seems like you’re too busy.

You.

You and you alone make a conscious choice to accept all of these interruptions, to live life according to when “they” (whoever “they” are) schedule it for you.

If you don’t take control of your time, someone or some event will gladly take control of it for you.

Think about that today.