Quarter 4 is one of the most profitable for most home business owners. People are shopping. Advertisers are spending money. Many of us start ramping up our efforts as soon as school gets back in session.
In addition to our professional goals and obligations, this is also the time of year we feel the most pressure personally. We have holiday gatherings to attend, shopping to do, school programs for the kids and more. With of all these things going on, many entrepreneurs get themselves stuck.
With a little planning, you can stay productive and keep your home business moving this holiday season. And you’ll still be able to enjoy that family time and festive activity!
Just Say No
Everyone is busy this time of year. Several people may try to unload some of their burden on you. If you don’t have the time, or it will take valuable time away from the things important to you, just say no. You should never feel guilty about allowing your personal priorities and obligations to come before the priorities and obligations of others.
Whether it’s “eat the frog” or start with the simplest task, just get started. I’m the worst at finding distractions to keep me from the job at hand. But, I usually find once I get started it doesn’t take me nearly the time or effort I anticipated. Getting started is the hardest part.
Clean Up Your Workspace – eliminate distractions
Clutter kills productivity. Your to-do and shopping lists are buried somewhere on your desk. You can’t find your keys in the chaos and you needed to be across town five minutes ago… Clean it up!
Buy a few inexpensive organizers for your home office. Throw away or file what you no longer need. Make shredding sensitive documents a weekly chore. With two business owners in the house, we need to shred a lot.
My husband is the household Master Shredder. He sits down with our Fellowes 79Ci once per week. This heavy duty machine can handle 16 sheets at a time and the cross-shredder can mow through paper clips, staples, credit cards and junk mail. It can run for up to 20 minutes, so you can get that pile taken care of and out of your way in no time.
The jam-proof system will save you time, eliminating the need to deal with pesky stuck papers. It is ultra-quiet. The patented SafeSense(R) Technology makes it great for work-at-home moms. The shredder automatically stops if hands touch the opening. The suggested retail price is $239.99 and you can pick it up on Amazon or at an office supply superstore.
Especially during the holidays, we try to convince ourselves we can handle it all –and then some. Why put yourself through that? If you are spreading yourself thin, you aren’t giving your best to anything. Not your family, not your clients and not yourself.
Delegate where you can. Hire a little home business help if you don’t have an assistant already. Assign some of the holiday cooking, cleaning or shopping to a family member. No one cares how much you got done if it was all done poorly. Be realistic with your time.
Be Mindful and Present
With all of the obligations and opportunities that come this time of year, it’s important to stay centered. Not only do our inner thoughts and feelings directly impact our productivity, the last thing you want to do is wake up January 2 feeling guilty and depressed that you didn’t allow yourself to enjoy the time you spent with your family and friends during this joyful time of year. Regardless of whether you are wrapping gifts with your children or doing some last minute shopping with your elderly aunt, be present. Be mindful of how you are allowing yourself to feel and treat others. Embrace every moment. Clear your internal clutter and chaos and the external will follow.