My New 4 Day Work Week Explained

I have been working for myself since 2006. That’s 15 years of being self-employed with the exception of one year I worked as an employee at a local office. That’s a lot of time to be working from home as an entrepreneur for someone who resigned from her awesome administrative assistant job during her second pregnancy saying “I will just work from home”, without any plan in mind.

I don’t have one service or skillset that I use to make money but I do have one business – Brandy Ellen Enterprises.

image of a note paper with check boxes and squiggles and the word to do beside it in white lettering with red background

My tasks on any given week include, but aren’t limited to:

  • Developing a new WordPress niche blog to sell. This includes writing at least 25 blog posts in addition to installing, setting up, and customizing the theme when possible.
  • Writing 12,800 +/- words most weeks for various clients who hire me to write content for their blogs.
  • Evaluating search engine data for this site, and soon I’ll be evaluating the same for our spring season blog.
  • Updating old blog content and resubmitting it to Google to get crawled with the updated SEO content.
  • Writing content for my prewritten content shop, as that’s one of my semi-passive income streams.
  • Scheduling social media posts, typically I share 10 posts on Pinterest manually 7 days a week.
  • Write some content for my next published book. I already have one published book with my firstborn, Positive Girl – The Power of Your Thoughts.

I’m sure there are other tasks I do, but that’s the gist of what my daily life looks like as an entrepreneur managing Brandy Ellen Enterprises.

As you can see I have a lengthy list of things to do each day and with a 4 day work week this year, it may sound impossible to handle it all. I used to let myself get overwhelmed looking at that long list of tasks.

I would look too far ahead instead of just focusing on one task at a time. I would talk myself out of the creative mindset with these unnecessary worries.

You might wonder why I started a 4-day only work week this year. I get it, that’s adding more stress than necessary.

Why can’t I just work like normal entrepreneurs that put in 60+ hours a week, and work 7 days a week?!

The simple answer is; because I don’t want to and shouldn’t have to after 15 years of building my brand, social media, and content.

a smiley face emjoi with sunglasses on and a top hat on with hands out shrugging

I decided to take this year and make it my you know what {hint, it starts with a B}! I was no longer going to ruin my eyes sitting at the computer for hours on end, never having time to enjoy life with my kids and husband.

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I wasn’t going to miss any more time with my family than I already have. I’m not new to the internet. I have established a social media presence.

I have established clients, references, and affiliate connections so why work as much as I have been working since 2006??

pinterest image that has a book and sky background with words 5 Techniques to Improve Your Time Management Skills

Now, if you want to start slowing down on the work at home hours and have a similar schedule where you get to choose whether or not to work Friday thru Sunday like me, then consider the following …

Techniques to Improve Your Time Management Skills

The techniques I’m featuring below are part of what’s helped me develop a 4 day work week making a pretty good income on just 20-30 hours per week. I was originally aiming for 20 hours per week, but it seems I do need to put in about 4-6 hours per day.

While I wanted to shorten my work week and work hours, I also needed to maintain current revenue while working to establish passive income streams to increase that current revenue.

Make Asana Your Bestie

I have fallen in love with Asana. I’ll embed the video showing how I use Asana for time management below. Asana has a free and paid version, I find the free version is sufficient for a sole proprietor business. With Asana you’re able to create different views which is excellent for a visual person.

You can create a task list each day, week, and month that looks like boards, a calendar, or a list set up with other templates available that I haven’t explored.

I’ve noticed you can even search the internet for Asana “marketing or another word” Templates and find some people who have created templates available to the public for personal and commercial use!

Check out my video below to see how I use Asana for time management.

Develop Tasks List The Night Before

One of the biggest benefits of using Asana is that I know that my tasks for tomorrow are always updated today. At the end of my workday, I will move the blocks around to assign myself the tasks required for the following day. I also plan up to a week or two in advance for other tasks; such as social media marketing plans or my content shop writing.

One thing I’ve learned from listening to some of the most successful people out there is this; you must write your task list down before bed each night so you go to bed subconsciously thinking about tomorrow’s tasks in a positive manner.

This will help you wake up ready to start the day without stress. I’ve been an avid supporter of making lists the night before as both a mother and entrepreneur. It truly reduces a lot of chaos and stress that arrives in an unpredictable life.

Remove Time Wasters

This is typically the most difficult part of being an entrepreneur. We want to help everyone and we tend to give out our advice, services, and expertise to anyone who asks without charging them. While I am all for helping people, if you truly want to make more money working fewer hours then you’re going to have to limit the number of people you help for free during the day.

Time wasters can be people that ask questions without paying you for your time, relatives or friends who interrupt your day with phone calls or stopping by, social media feeds, and anything else that doesn’t allow you to focus on money-making tasks. I dove into this topic further in the video below:

As you can see, removing time wasters is all about making a list of what you’re wasting time doing during a workday. I have worked hard to practice saying YES to things that align with my business goals and NO to things that don’t. I remain firm with my family about which hours are “family time” and which are strictly for “business time”.
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In fact, being this strict with your business operations will show your kids through example how to run a successful business!

Use Automation When Possible

I was going to say “outsource tasks” but I’m not currently doing that as much as I’d like. I am, however, working on building a team of writers and social media professionals by the end of the year! If you’re low on funds, then automation will be your next best option for “outsourcing”.

I use the free version of Hootsuite to schedule content on Twitter, however, I am making plans to upgrade to the paid version so I can schedule more than 30 posts at a time. No matter how many new automated tools that release to help businesses with social media automation, I still find Hootsuite is the most user-friendly option to get the job done for free or super low-cost.

There are other automated programs that people in my industry have recommended, such as:

Learn From The Experts

Last but not least, read every book and listen to podcasts or YouTube videos about time management and what wealthy people do to manage their time. You can learn so much from others who’ve mastered time management. I can’t recommend every single person I’ve listened to (as there are many), but I can tell you that Brian Tracy’s YouTube channel has quite a few videos to get you started.

The best book this year that’s really helped me practice better time management skills is ‘The Best Yes’. It’s a Christian book, so I know this won’t resonate with everyone but it’s the one book thus far in 2021 that’s helped me get to this 4 day work week.

Final Thoughts About Time Management

We all have the same hours in a day to get things done. When you’re juggling homeschool, married life, entrepreneurship, and everything else that’s involved in your daily life you must learn to make every moment count.

When you start using my techniques to improve your time management skills, you’ll soon find that more revenue comes in, life feels more peaceful, and things start to work out in all areas of your unpredictable life. If I had to tell you the number one key to managing your time better, then it would be this —> have a big enough reason WHY.

As I mentioned earlier in this article, I decided that I didn’t want to miss any more time with my family than I already have. This is surely a big enough reason WHY to stay focused, disciplined, and dedicated to the process of managing time.

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What is the best project management tool?

The best project management tool is Asana hands down. The free version works very well for an entrepreneur who wants to practice good time management skills without added business expenses.

What techniques should I use to improve my time management and productivity?

The best technique to improve time management and productivity is to select a good project management tool like Asana, automate tasks that can be automated, and have a big enough reason why to continue improving your productivity through time management.

How do you fix bad time management?

Take a moment to pause and review what your daily tasks are. Write down how long each task takes. Use a program like Asana to map out your daily and weekly tasks. Prioritize the tasks and set confident boundaries to fix bad time management.

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