What do you wish you had more of?
99% of the time I ask this question, the answer is one of two things:
Time or money.
Today we are going to address the first one.
If you are interested to know how I save myself DAYS of work every month....
If you are interested to learn how I create at least one month of content at a time (I'm talking photos, captions, blog posts, and e-mail newsletters)...
If you are interested to find out how I went from hustling every single day to set-it-and-forget it (and a wholeeee lot more time to cuddle my dog)....
Then keep on reading my friend, because I am about to rock your world.
I'm here to give you a hard truth.
If you think being productive means trying to do all the things at once, or switching back and forth between five different tasks....you are truly not living your best. In fact, you're doing yourself a very large disservice.
And just to make sure you actually believe me, here are some cold hard facts for ya:
Each time you switch from one task to another, it takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to get back to the original task.
And not to mention multi-taskers take 50% longer to accomplish a task (and it increases errors by 50%!)
Sooo do I have your attention now? GREAT. 😬
The truth is the human brain is not built for multi-tasking. When you switch back and forth between multiple things, you aren't giving anything your full attention. And it's one thing to know multi-tasking isn't efficient for your business (or your life), but it's another thing entirely to actively implement a strategy to correct it because it is absolutely a lifestyle change.
So what's the big secret?
Batch working is a strategy where you set aside a chunk of time to allow for intensely focused work on a single topic. So basically you divide your workflow into hours or days set aside for one specific task only instead of jumping around between ten different things at once.
So using this blog as an example, instead of having to write a blog post every single week of every single month for the entire year (aka a constant stream of work)....I set aside one to two days a month to sit down, get in the zone, and churn out 4-5 blog posts at once. This then means I have that remaining 4-5 weeks of time (and brain space) back!
Batching allows you to work ahead, plan strategically, and find time to truly rest. Imagine finally being able to shed that constant feeling of being behind or like you must be forgetting something...I mean, that's pretty much the dream amiright?!
To start implementing this strategy into your own life or business, the first thing you need to do is set aside time to analyze your workflow. Look for any processes that you repeat on a regular basis and list them all out. For me, it looked something like this:
Deciding blog post topics for the month
Writing/scheduling weekly blog posts
Writing/scheduling weekly e-mail newsletters
Taking photographs for client socials
Taking photographs for my own socials
Curating social feed aesthetics
Crafting captions for socials
Scheduling posts for socials
For every single one of those tasks above, I block out time in my schedule once a month and complete that task for the entire month. Eventually I hope to get to the point where I can get things scheduled out a full two to three months ahead of time! (Hello laying on the beach with a fruity cocktail in hand 😎🍹)
To give you a deeper dive into just how effective this strategy is, let's look at all the photography I do on a regular basis. Every time I do flatlays I have to get my backdrops and reflectors set up. I re-arrange my office furniture to position everything for peak lighting conditions. I spend time getting all the equipment set up and then have to break it down afterwards. If I were to go through this process for one-off photos, doing it probably multiple times a week, think about how much time I would be wasting! But when I go through the entire process only ONCE and get all the photos I need for the entire month, batching this task alone has saved me hours of time every month.
Now I want you to grab a paper and pen and list out everything that you find yourself doing over and over. What can you begin batching in your business and in your life to save yourself time? What would your life look like having weeks worth of time back instead of having to constantly work? I promise it really is as life-changing as it sounds, and it really does work for everyone no matter what industry you are in!
If you are utilizing Instagram in your brand or business, then make sure you check out my FREE guide on the exact apps I use to automate and streamline this process for my own business and for my clients!
Do you have other productivity hacks that help you save time and stress in your business? Comment below and let me know!
If you have any questions, comments, or other topics you would like me to cover, please send me a message here. I would love to hear from you!
If you want to see more articles on how to build your career, subscribe here and follow along on Instagram, @nicolericcardo!
Thank you for reading!