My name’s Sophia Lebano. I am so excited to bring you this blog post about keeping yourself organized in your personal and business life, while being a student entrepreneur! This is my favorite thing to talk about, because a good work/life balance is so important!
By Sophia Lebano, Podcaster & Student Entrepreneur.
Wanting a Better Work/Life Balance: Leaving my 9 to 5.
After working for summer job in retail with a standard 9 to 5, I knew I wanted to work for myself. I didn’t love the fact that I was on someone else’s schedule, and I wanted to do something that I genuinely love and could make money doing.
I started my podcast, called Hear and Now Podcast, and started getting sponsors. It made me realize I wanted to help other people do what I do. That’s how I got into branding. I have experience in web design, graphic design, content creation, and social media.
In the beginning of January of 2020, I started to move into branding which is all about developing a consistent voice across multiple platforms. It’s my passion!
In addition to being an entrepreneur, I’m actually a sophomore in college. I followed college classes online, even before COVID hit.
How to create a healthy work/life balance.
I decided that if I was going to be an entrepreneur, I needed a way to balance my personal/school life and my business life. I’m here to share with you my expertise on organization and productivity for entrepreneurs and finding the perfect work/life balance.
Here are my top 5 tips for finding balance in your work and personal life.
1. Create a System.
I have heard this term come up a lot and it’s been super important. Creating systems can have multiple meanings to it. The most effective one that I’ve seen implemented into my own life is having a system for doing my work, which is also kind of known as workflow. For podcasting in particular, I record all my episodes at least a week in advance since they are guest interviews, then send them over to my editor ASAP. She sends them back to me on Monday, and I upload it right away! That way, by Tuesday morning at 1:00 AM, they’ll be live and ready to go.
When I was in high school, I had a filing system to stay on top of my notes and my papers. So anytime I would get an assignment, it would go in one folder. When I was done with that assignment, I’d go to the next folder. By the time I had turned it in, the last folder was always empty.
Everything I do now is virtual and electronic because that’s the way that I can retain information the best. It’s on my phone. I always have it when I’m ready to go somewhere. For example, when I have a client who wants to schedule a meeting with me, I automatically just send them my Calendly link. They can book a call, it directs it into my calendar. My calendar can check for my busy times, and then it’ll automatically send my client a zoom meeting link. And I don’t even have to think about it.
I just get an alert: so and so scheduled a meeting for Friday at 10:00 AM.
Everything I do goes into my Google Calendar because it is all in my phone, all in one place.
2. Write Everything Down.
I can’t stress the importance of writing something down enough, whether it’s digitally or on paper, whatever works for you. I find myself remembering things when I have somewhere to reference it. If I’m on the go and I have a thought, it goes into the notes app on my phone. That one’s pretty straightforward.
3. Schedule Everything.
This might sound weird, but if you schedule your tasks in like appointments, it’s going to hold you accountable. I will schedule in my workout like an appointment. I select the days that I want to hold myself accountable. Same thing goes for recording, writing, content, production, all that stuff. If you schedule it, it’s going to be on your calendar. You have to do it. You wouldn’t not just show up for an appointment and risk getting late fees.
Right? Pretty simple.
For more about this, check out The Ultimate Guide to Calendar Blocking.
4. Block Scheduling.
I was first introduced to this concept by a YouTuber named Jordan Page, from funcheaporfree.com. It’s been so helpful for me to have this routine that I can know what to expect, but it’s also very flexible.
Here’s the rundown, I’ve created a sample schedule to show you how Block Scheduling works!
7AM – 10AM : MORNING BLOCK
- Wake up
- Make breakfast
- Check your phone
- Write a to do list
10AM – 12PM : WORK BLOCK
- Content creation
- Answer emails
12PM – 5PM : HOMEWORK BLOCK
- Meet up with a friend
- Schedule any appointments during this block
- Get the bulk of any personal things done
5PM – 10PM : NIGHT BLOCK
- Take a shower
- Lay out tomorrow’s outfit
- Prepare for tomorrow
- Eat dinner
- Go to bed
Let’s say you don’t accomplish something in block 2 (the work block), roll it over into block 3. it’s not done by the hour. It’s done by a block, which is totally incredible.
Here is a link to Jordan’s initial video talking about how to use a block schedule.
5. Microwave Minute Tasks.
This is another thing Jordan Page talks about. You don’t realize how long a minute is until you’re actually waiting for something to be done. How many of you guys have actually been in like a gym or working out doing a plank?
In that moment, it’s the most painful minute you’ve ever experienced in your life. And you would think that it was 24 hours long.
When making food in a microwave, it’s the same thing. A minute can feel like eternity, but how much can you actually get done in that minute instead of standing around and waiting for food?
Set a timer for a minute to see how many things you can do. Usually you can manage to clear off an entire counter or sweep the floor. Once you get the motivation going, you’re not going to want to stop. That is incredible. Use your phone, get a timer, time yourself to see how long it’ll take and countdown from a minute.
Work/life balance is all about… surprise, surprise… BALANCE!
How much time are you spending on social media? Or writing emails when you could be doing something else? How much on client calls? Procrastinating on something that will only take a minute?
Be aware of the time you waste for a better work/life balance.
Set timers, use your planner, block out sections of your day to do personal things and then business things.
I’m curious to know, what is the number one tip you are going to implement in your business? I can’t wait to hear from you guys.
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