Getting organized and being productive is high on every entrepreneur’s list of qualities. We want to be organized, we want to be productive. But how do we get there?
Lindsay Stead, a mother, wife, teacher, and entrepreneur knows fully well the importance of an organized life. She’ll be the first to say that she still has a ways to go in her journey of an organized and productive life, but she’s eager to share what she’s learned thus far. I hope you find her story inspiring!
Before you read further, Lindsay clarifies that what works for her may not work for others. We’re all different and have different ways of processing things. She hopes her story encourages you to find practical solutions for a more fulfilled, organized, and productive lifestyle.
A discouraging mindset
In the beginning, her journey provided more discouragement than anything. Lindsay says she was stressed about getting organized.
The more disorganized she’d become, the more stressed she’d get. She was caught in a vicious cycle of disorganization and stress. The stressed attitude only contributed toward a feeling of hopelessness which did no good in her attempts to succeed. Why? How? Because the more down and out she was, the more disorganized she’d become.
Make your bed and change your life
For years, Lindsay thought being a carefree easy going gal without a plan was the way to be content. But the harder she tried to go at life without a plan, the worse she felt.
But one day, the light bulb went on for Lindsay. Something clicked inside her when she overheard someone on the television say, “the state of your bed is the state of your head.” She can’t remember who said it, but the saying struck a chord with her. It was a life-changing moment.
She knew it was true. So she started making her bed every day.
Lindsay agrees that it may seem like a small thing, but she points out that it was something she’d never done consistently.
And it felt so good to start her day with such an easy task that she could check off her to do list each day. Now she’s been making her bed for years and it has certainly helped with mindset.
Power in small victories
The small victory of a made bed paved the way to bigger things. The victory of making her bed allowed Lindsay to gain momentum and stay motivated for the rest of her checklist items.
Use your planner — that’s what it’s for
In addition to starting her day with success, Lindsay learned to write in her planner.
Lindsay always shied away from writing in her planners — it made her feel like she was messing it up. But once she saw writing in a new planner as a good thing, her life changed for the better.
In her planner, Lindsay writes critical notes for the upcoming week. Over time, she’s saved money by organizing her meal planning, tasks, and projects. She also jots down her notes according to the level of importance, length of the project, and its dependencies.
What a change from the girl-without-a-plan mindset. A mindset that only brought about struggles and discouragement!
She checks these tasks off as she goes about her day and week.
Stack your Mondays
Lindsay is a big proponent of stacking Mondays in terms of tasks. She tries to get the big things out of the way on Mondays — or a bunch of little tasks with the intent to breeze through them.
Getting these big things or a group of little tasks out of the way at the start of her week sets the tone for the subsequent days.
Get a planner you love
Another key to success is finding a planner you love. Lindsay loves pretty feminine planners, so that’s what buys. You’ll find a myriad of planner options online if you take the time to shop around. See what fits your style.
She likes to use a weekly and monthly planner. Her planner is blank on the underside of each page, so she uses that side for notes or ideas that come to her mind that week.
Leverage the power of apps
Now how about the organizing power of apps such as Slack or Trello?
Lindsay says she loves to get her team on both Slack and Trello. She says it feels efficient and that you can link back to both within the two apps.
The great thing is that you can jazz up your apps so you like looking at them. She finds it wonderfully satisfying to look at her organized Trello boards.
“Fail to plan, plan to fail,” Lindsay quips.
Begin with one small space and organize that. Find one area in your life and tackle it. Look for ways to bring more organization to that area and you’ll find those changes affecting the other areas of your life.
Outsource those tasks that take up your time. As your business grows, you’ll do well to spend on outsourcing so you can focus on other things.
Busy lives need efficiency
You want to gain momentum and finding the right process for planning and organizing your life will help you succeed.
We’re all busy. We all have lives. Businesses, families, and social engagements scratch the surface of what fills our schedules.
By being more organized, you can be so much more efficient Lindsay says. She speaks from experience.
Lindsay Stead, Found of Gilded Blooms Communications
A creative spirit by nature, and a business enthusiast by upbringing, Lindsay is a digital marketing and communications professional with experience in sales, client relationship management, brand management, research marketing, web design, digital marketing and social media management. She graduated from Thompson River University in 2016 with a Bachelor of Social Sciences, with a focus on English. Lindsay currently runs Gilded Blooms Communications while also sharing her experience with her students as part of a marketing program at a local design school.
Lindsay is passionate about digital marketing and web design because it is the perfect marriage between her creative and innovative side and her organizational and business side. Her parents were driven for success and Lindsay watched their entrepreneurial endeavours growing up, with a keen (and quiet) interest; watching her parents carve out their own path, she knew that would follow in their footsteps and either become a teacher like her Mom, or a business owner like her Dad. In the end, she is fortunate to have taken a page out of both of their books and have her feet firmly planted in both worlds: as a teacher and an entrepreneur.
In her downtime, Lindsay thoroughly enjoys dancing around her kitchen to Disney Princess music with her two little girls and her husband (yes, he dances too!). She can often be found relaxing on the swing in her garden, whipping up cocktails with friends, or diving into popcorn with her husband. Lindsay favours “chick-lit” and “chick-flicks”, which she reads and watches with her Mom, baths filled with Lush goodies, and blasting music! With an affinity for all-things-girly, glitter, and floral, Lindsay is determined to spread positivity and happiness
Lindsay Stead Founder of Gilded Blooms Communications, is a digital marketing and communications professional with experience in sales, client relationship management, brand management, research marketing, web design, digital marketing and social media management. She graduated from Thompson River University in 2016 with a Bachelor of Social Sciences, with a focus on English. Lindsay currently runs Gilded Blooms Communications while also sharing her experience with her students as part of a marketing program at a local design school.
Lindsay is passionate about digital marketing and web design because it is the perfect marriage between her creative and innovative side and her organizational and business side. Her parents were driven for success and Lindsay watched their entrepreneurial endeavors growing up, with a keen (and quiet) interest; watching her parents carve out their own path, she knew that would follow in their footsteps and either become a teacher like her Mom, or a business owner like her Dad. In the end, she is fortunate to have taken a page out of both of their books and have her feet firmly planted in both worlds: as a teacher and an entrepreneur.
In her downtime, Lindsay thoroughly enjoys dancing around her kitchen to Disney Princess music with her two little girls and her husband (yes, he dances too!). She can often be found relaxing on the swing in her garden, whipping up cocktails with friends, or diving into popcorn with her husband. Lindsay favors “chick-lit” and “chick-flicks”, which she reads and watches with her Mom, baths filled with Lush goodies, and blasting music! With an affinity for all-things-girly, glitter, and floral, Lindsay is determined to spread positivity and happiness.
Lindsay’s FREE Gift to You:
Find out who your social media spirit animal is so you can light your visibility on fire! Take the Quiz Now!
On today’s guest blog post, we have Allison Perez laying out some helpful advice that leads to a decluttered and empowered life.
Allison works with her husband Elvin as a relationship expert and love alignment coach. They both provide coaching that stems from personal experience in overcoming personal obstacles. This husband and wife team works with clients that are individuals or couples.
Everything around you is a reflection of everything inside of you, Allison posits. You can be in control of the life you lead by being more in alignment with your core beliefs and choosing to live a life that feels good to you. It must feel good to you in mind, body, and soul.
A word of caution
All your relationships in life — romantic, familial and platonic — are important. As you grow and find your true self, you need to be careful that you don’t isolate yourself or neglect those who matter. As people grow, sometimes they feel as though they’ve outgrown those around them.
Three steps to feeling empowered and more in control
In her video, Allison lays out three steps towards liberating control and empowerment.
Does it seem like your life is spinning out of control on a day to day basis? Are you feeling disorganized or overwhelmed by circumstances in your life? If you feel bogged down by stress or anxiety, Allison has a three-step plan to help you move out of that funk.
Clutter in your life can lead one to live in their head space rather than live a life of freedom. If you want to feel in control, you need to acquire control of your thoughts and how you show up in life. Understand that you can decide how to think about your day to day life.
Step 1: Get control of your thoughts
So the first step is acquiring control of your thoughts.
To some, the idea of controlling one’s thoughts is a new concept. When we talk about our thoughts, we don’t often realize that we have full control over them.
Whether sub-consciously or consciously, we repeat mantras to ourselves. Mantras such as, “Why am I that way? I’ve always been that way.” Or “I don’t know why I’m always attracting that sort of person.” Or “I don’t know why I always get left doing everything.”
When we feel stuck in a hamster wheel of negative thought, we need to come into the present. When you are able to keep yourself in the present and thinking about what needs to be done today, Allison says you learn not to worry about what’s to come.
When you are worrying about the past, maybe you’re dealing with anxiety and depression. When you think about the future, you’re talking in terms of things that haven’t happened yet so you’re worrying. You have anxiety because you can’t control what’s going to happen.
All you can control is the day you’re living at the moment. What do you have to do today? Think about that and stay in the present. When you stay aware and present on a day to day basis, you can find freedom from anxiety and depression. Why? Because you are creating your future at this moment.
This sort of thinking has you working in realistic terms of what you can do today.
Allison says this thinking works for relationships too. It’s not the explosions that create disruptions in relationships, she says. It’s all the little moments that go unaddressed — moments that build up and cause a big eruption.
When you focus on today, life becomes so much more manageable. But it takes time to get on board with this mindset. Over time, you will notice your life begin to change for the better.
Step 2: Flip into your body
By staying in your head, you’re embracing an endless cycle of self-doubt. You need to gain control of your thoughts, putting them in the present and then flip into your body.
You need to go from “I think” to “I feel.”
By flipping into our body, Allison means that our bodies tell us things all the time that we’re too distracted to understand. Flip into your body and things will start to feel effortless.
You need to start thinking in terms of what your body is saying to you and listen to it. What are you feeling? Is it anger? Disappointment? Once you define how you’re feeling, you can understand why you’re feeling that way and take steps to understand types of situations make you feel that way.
Then you can ask why those events are happening. This is a way to dig through layers, finding the root cause of your feelings and find healing.
Once we heal the thing that causes us stress, it no longer brings us anxiety. Through this technique, Allison said the things that she thought would bother her forever no longer have power. She’s found freedom. She’s been liberated through these techniques. In this way, you too can enjoy the life you created for you.
With this in mind, Allison says we can all decide what kind of wife, mother, daughter, friend, and woman we wish to be. Even if we haven’t done things right in the past, we can begin making positive decisions today.
Step three: Trust your intuition
Allison says when she finally moved from her head and into her body, things started to fall into place. She began to stop overthinking life. She began to actively pursue things that make her feel good.
When you feel good, you’re able to track positivity and keep moving forward. Our mind is decluttered and we’re living in the present. Anxiety is out of the picture and we’re leading with our heart, Allison says.
The third step entails trusting your intuition. This is where we flip into our purpose.
So now we’re talking about our soul. What is our soul’s purpose in our life? Allison says to trust yourself as much as anything else. Learn how to trust yourself and top second-guessing your own intuition.
Allison says we all have that voice that hesitates or tells us to move forward. Unfortunately, sometimes we ignore it. All those years of dismissing that voice have put us way out of alignment. And thus we are far from our true self, Allison explains. How do you come back to your true self? Follow these three steps to embrace the self-empowered life and be in control.
Allison Perez is an Intuitive Relationship Expert + Love &
Alignment Coach. She works with soulful and heart centered women who are strong, confident, unapologetically themselves and through their own journey of self discovery have found success at helping other women, but have realized that to achieve a higher level of success they must go deeper to finally have full freedom in their life and relationships.
After 15 years of work in the field of marketing and advertising, Jennifer Hadley-White decided to start her own business. Three years ago she took this entrepreneurial leap. Today she helps clients with paid search advertising and she coaches entrepreneurs on how to find focus. Jennifer likes to call herself the “unstucker.”
She empathizes with the overwhelmed and busy entrepreneur. And that’s why she’s come on board as a guest — she wants to share some invaluable tips on how to keep moving forward.
Little things that help you get unstuck
There are many little things that can help you get unstuck and moving forward. Jennifer hopes these tips will help propel you into fearless productivity.
Two monitors for productivity
Jennifer admits that multitasking may not be the best thing, but we all do it. So why not make things more efficient by using a dual monitor system on your computer?
A dual monitor setup can serve you well in a variety of scenarios.
For instance, you could have a document open on the monitor so you can easily copy and paste data from that into the document open on the second monitor.
Or you could have a tutorial playing on one side while you follow along by applying the lesson on the other screen.
Organize your desk
When it comes to organizing your desk, Jennifer keys in on some helpful points.
First, consider the placement of your tools. Scissors, pens, markers and the like should be kept in a strategic location. Think of what you’re using often and strategically place it.
Second, buy some organizers. Get your hands on some pencil holders and baskets — whatever will work for organizing your tools of choice.
Third, keep yourself well-stocked with your supplies and — a must-have for Jennifer — lotion.
Bullet journal and monthly calendar
Jennifer likes to have a different journal for each topic — the topics that are relevant to her. For example, she has different journals for coaching, marketing, and business. And they’re color-coded so she can easily identify them on the shelf. For example, she knows the business journal is orange and the coaching journal is green.
These journals help her keep information organized as opposed to mixed notes on different topics.
Duplicates of your go-to tools
OK, so here’s a nifty idea. Jennifer says she keeps scissors in every room. That way, if she’s in the middle of something and needs the scissors, she doesn’t have to leave the room she finds herself in at the moment. It’s not the first time she’s interrupted her thoughts to grab scissors in a different room, only to lose her thoughts or get distracted from what she needed to get done.
She also keeps a stapler, tape, and paperclips in every room. These are the little things that get her, so she combats these weaknesses through the means of duplicates.
Stack your reading list in a visible place
Know that long list of books you’re meaning to read? Grab those books and stack them up on a visible location. This will serve as a visible reminder to read them, even if you’re reading the Kindle edition.
Printer addicts, unite!
Jennifer loves to print all her materials and courses — she organizes them in tabs. Yes, even her email marketing material.
She likes to keep physical copies handy for future reference.
Keep your everyday necessities within reach
Medicines or supplements, nail clippers, and lipstick are some of the things Jennifer will keep within reach of her desk area.
She knows she needs to stay on top of her medication. So it makes sense to keep that visible and easily accessible.
Nail clippers are a convenient must in her opinion.
Jennifer loves to have lipstick handy for those moments when she needs to record video or answer a video call.
Your everyday necessities may be different from hers. You get the idea!
Bucket your tasks
Here’s another productivity hack from Jennifer. She’s a huge fan of bucketing tasks (or batch processing).
By bucketing, she means that you focus on one type of task for one productive time slot.
For example, focus on writing blog posts during that one bucket of time. That’s all you do —- you focus on that one action and write all the blog posts you can.
And then you can do all your editing at one time.
Your blog post photos can be done at one time too.
And the scheduling. And so forth.
By bucketing her tasks, Jennifer is able to focus better. Once she’s in the writing mood, she can capitalize on that rather than switching gears on different types of tasks.
So I hope you enjoyed that as much as I did! Jennifer also has a goals and affirmation planner that you can tap into for further unstucking help. It’s called “Get Unstuck: Daily & Weekly Planner” and you can download your copy here.
Jennifer Hadley-White not only shows us her desk, explaining how she keeps it organized, but she shows us how she does her “buckets” of time/tasks as well as her weekly/monthly planner.
Jennifer offers coaching for female solopreneurs who feel stuck by fear, lack of focus, and overwhelm. You can schedule a complimentary session with her. All sessions are booked on the half-hour but are 45 minutes long.
She also gave us this amazing Get Unstuck: Daily & Weekly Planner.
Do you work on retainer for your clients?
If you do, you probably run into the problem where you send your clients weekly updates on how many hours are left on their retainer or your clients always have to ask to see a report.
I knew there had to be a better way.
Of course, I could pay for some fancy system that I didn’t feel like I needed. I ended up creating it myself.
In the end, whenever I tracked time in Toggl, it automatically gets put on a master Google Spreadsheet. From this spreadsheet, it automatically gets distributed to my retainer clients. (Seriously, I don’t have to touch any of the spreadsheets. Everything automatically gets updated.)
What You’ll Need:
- Toggl Account (the free version works just fine)
- Zapier (the free version works just fine for this as well)
- Google Spreadsheets (this is free)
I’ve broken down the process into 5 steps:
Step 1: Set Up Your Master Spreadsheet
I called mine “Toggl Time” (I know, I’m super creative) and have the following columns: Client, Date, Time, Description
Rename the sheets to whatever you’d like. I named mine “total”. This will be important when setting up your zap.
Step 2: Set Up a Zap
- The trigger is Toggl new time entry
- The action is a new row in your Google Sheet
Step 3: Create Tabs for Each Client
On your master sheet (the one I called Toggl Time), create a separate tab for each of your clients. The name of each of these tabs should be unique. This could be the client name or number.
In cell A1, write a query formula to grab all of the rows with that particular client’s information.
I named the range on the total tab to AllTogglTime to make the query formula a little easier.
Step 4: Create a Google Sheet for Your Client
I made all of the columns width 150.
Put the logo in the top left corner and your contact information next to it.
Write a little note to your client, if you wish.
Give them links to the tabs to provide more detail to them (to make it as easy as possible for them).
Create your summaries. I have formulas for the past 7 and 30 days. These formulas are sumifs formula using “today” as the parameter.
I then put a simple sum formula that takes the total payments (from the payments tab) and subtracts the total time spent (from the time tab).
I then removed the gridlines to make it look a little nicer by going to view > gridlines.
Step 5: Share With Your Clients
Do you need a more detailed step by step guide? For just $7, you can see the EXACT steps I’ve used, along with videos to guide you through each step here. BONUS: In this tutorial, you’ll also see how I created a summary for my master spreadsheet to give me an overview and also show me when a client’s hours are getting low!
If you’d like to skip the DIY and would like me to set this up for you (including the master sheet’s summary), reach out to me here and I’d be happy to help!
Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.
If you could use an extra set of hands in your business, Schedule a FREE Discovery Call here.
Are you a go-getter, always going and always giving to others? Do you find that you give off a happy vibe on the outside, but you’re actually insecure and worried on the inside? Are you constantly tired but always pushing yourself forward?
Worried that burnout might be catching up to you?
Penelope Jayne understands what it’s like to be in your shoes. Penelope calls herself a “guru.” She works with her husband to help others find balance and health in their lifestyle.
“In Sanskrit,” she says, “It [guru] means not only to teach but to take one out of the darkness and into the light.”
Life with burn out
Growing up, Penelope watched her mother suffer from thyroid problems, migraines, and a host of other health issues. Her mother, struggling through serious health issues, required much help from Penelope and her father. In this environment, Penelope developed a strong sense of compassion at a young age. This compassion, while a beautiful thing, easily gave way to burn out.
When her mother passed away, Penelope realized she was burned out after giving so much to family and friends. An autoimmune disorder developed as a result of her on-the-go mentality and she shut down completely.
During this dark period of her life, Penelope lost many of her friends. People didn’t know how to take the lack of a “happy” Penelope or her absence at many social events.
“I was a woman, mother, daughter, and friend — always on the go, always giving and never time for self,” Penelope explained.
She made time for her hair, time for her nails and the occasional walk, and time to beat herself up at the gym. However, she made no time to love herself.
Pushing through burn out
In crowds, she appeared happy on the exterior. But inside, she was always alone and always worried about her looks, having an extra pristine home, and more — she just worried about everything.
She remained tired all the time. But always pushing through the exhaustion, she aimed to get things done and help others. Penelope equated resting with laziness. Being type A, she constantly coaxed herself to get up and do something.
On a regular basis, Penelope stood as her own biggest critic. One day she paused and took a hard look at her attitude, “Would I speak to a friend this way? I’d never be cruel — not on your life! I was hard on myself. This all caught up with me.”
Coming out of burn out: a change in attitude
Finally, Penelope realized she needed to make time to genuinely love herself. Adrenal fatigue as a result of regular stress did her in.
To clarify, Penelope adds she does not mean love for self in a narcissistic fashion. Rather, she means a self-love that stops to appreciate the life you have. She now strives for a life that’s full of gratitude.
After realizing the need for a change of outlook, Penelope began to revamp her attitude. She sought to study under some incredible doctors, gaining as much knowledge as possible to combat her health issues.
Don’t be a martyr — take time out for yourself
In the process, she’s learned that accumulated stress doesn’t leave on its own. You have to do the manual work on your own — take the time to love, care for, and think for, and set boundaries for yourself. You don’t want to self-sabotage yourself.
“When you’re tired, rest,” Penelope insists. “When you’re not perfect, forgive. Love yourself. Realize you’ve been given a beautiful gift called life. When you’re alive, the impossible becomes possible. It’s unlimited potential. There’s so much you can do with your life.”
A program for a life that thrives post-burnout
Through her research, Penelope found that modern medicine could only offer temporary “band-aid” solutions. These solutions were not only temporary, but they also made her feel very unhealthy with their side effects.
So she designed her own program for self-care and health.
With her self-developed program, Penelope chose a whole food plant-based diet. She removed all the cleaning chemicals from her home and replaced them with natural cleaning solutions. She worked on changing her outlook on self to one of self-love and self-respect.
Out with the bad habits, in with the good
In closing, Penelope Jayne learned these lessons on burnout recovery the hard way.
Penelope believes that autoimmune disorders, disease, depression, suicidal thoughts, and more can be dealt with by breaking bad habits and replacing them with new good habits.
But Penelope also knows it’s hard to break those bad habits alone. That’s why she’s chosen to serve people through coaching. She’s passionate about health and mindset. Her compassionate attitude certainly proves that she’s meant to help others with their own journey towards self-care.
Did you find this article and video helpful? Today’s post was brought to you through my global collection of business and life tips. For more on that, check out this link. You’re invited to contribute or follow for more educational resources.
Penelope Jayne works with her husband Sean Beveridge. Together they developed Global Recharge. She’s a health & Wellness Guru empowering people to Self Love, reduce stress, exhaustion, fatigue, weight issues, depression, anxiety, isolation, insomnia, lack of drive and passion, overwhelm and cynicism, to bring back balance, productivity, creativity and joy back into their personal and professional life. Trained in Integrative Nutrition IIN New York, Diet and Lifestyle Intervention, Energy Healing, Chakra Cleansing, certified Food Over Medicine Instructor trained by Dr Pam Popper, Wellness Forum Health USA, Time Line Therapy®, Hypnotherapy, Neuro Linguistic Program Practitioner and Weight Management Certification. Penelope won an Australian Day Award for her work with Street Kids and the homeless. You can find Penelope at http://globalrecharge.guru/.