Because time is money and the secret to your success really is in your daily + weekly routines.
This week we’re building on it and talking specifically to my online trainers who are balancing training online and in-person, all while growing their business and brand.
So I’m sharing 5 actionable tips and tricks to help you take charge of your time, energy, career and LIFE. Starting today, one item for each day this week, to redirect 2020 back to where you want it going, and beyond.
If you’re ready to take charge of your schedule, your time, your energy - grab a piece of paper, your calendar, and let’s do this.
1 - Change your definition of “work” This will be the foundation for the rest of these tips. As a business owner you have to get into your head that you have signed up for an unconventional schedule; this means you won’t (can’t) be training clients for 8-10 hours/day. And if you still are, regularly, we have to increase your rates so you have more time for all of the other stuff.
Because you see, that ‘stuff’ is what’s going to create, cultivate and GROW your business. That other ‘stuff’ is actually the important parts of being a business owner, and not just a trainer.
That stuff will include: programming, playlisting, invoicing, replying to emails, working with your business coach, writing newsletters, creating new content for social, engaging on social, working on that next ‘thing’, etc. etc….
Side note: I prefer to batch emails 2-3x a day, instead of answering them when they come in. I devote 30-45 mins in the morning, afternoon and evening ONLY to go through and read + reply to what’s come in. This ensures that I’m not glued to my inbox all day and it allows me to plow through them, make to-do lists based on what’s come through, and then get back to work.
Your job, starting today, is to acknowledge that YOU ARE A BRAND and that everything YOU do is work, so long as it’s part of the greater purpose and goal of your business. When you start looking at everything you do as part of a larger, more purposeful plan towards a bigger YOU, it changes you how you spend your time.
Which leads me to…
2 - Systems and routines will save you. Start them ASAFP. There is an overwhelming amount of stuff to get done. If #1 above didn’t make you sweat a little, you’re not being honest with yourself. Love you, mean it, but I will never sugar coat it or mislead you.
So your job TODAY is to start creating systems and routines that allow you to put certain things on autopilot.
Blogs, workouts, newsletters, etc. should go out on specific days every.single.week. But then take it a step further and create a system for how you come up with blog topics, when you write them (night before? Day before), how they get posted, how you share the post with your community.
Now create the same system for every single thing you do.
It’s not tedious. It’s YOU being CONSCIOUS of your actions, how much time you spend on them, and whether or not you’re acting purposefully, so that you can move the ball forward AND get all the things done.
My challenge to you starting this week: create a step-by-step process for how you do EVERYTHING. Even if it’s in your head. The reason is two-fold:
One - When you go to do it, you know exactly what you’re supposed to be doing next, which will hopefully keep you on task
Two - When you start HIRING out (and YES, you will), you are going to need this ish organized and systematic so that someone else can step in and take it off your plate!
As for routine - I find the easiest way to actually get things done and move my business forward is if those things become a routine part of my calendar. I am in the routine of working on future projects on this day, writing blogs and newsletters on these days, on taking courses these nights, etc. etc.
And then, going back to last week’s Tips #2 and #3 - put yourself and your stuff in your calendar! Make it your non-negotiable appointments with yourself. And do it when you’re your best.
See how these are all working together? Pretty cool, huh?
3 - Yes, you ultimately get to set your schedule, but there are times when the people get what/when they want instead. Make it worth your time anyways.
But wait, D, how is that possible? You just sold me on the being able to create my own schedule and that’s what I was signing up for.
So here’s the caveat. Sometimes we have to bend for clients until we’re able to afford not to, or able to tell them otherwise. Sometimes we just have to accommodate because it’s what our industry dictates.
For fitness there are prime times (6a -9a, 4p-7p) and if you’re a good instructor/trainer you know that these are going to be your busy hours in some way. So yes, ideally you don’t have to wake up in the 4a hour, but for sold-out classes and well-paying clients that might just be the sacrifice you make.
Make the sacrifices now, but do it purposefully and consciously. Either train early or late, not both. One weekend day, but not both. Go where the loyal and well-paying clients are. Ask them what works best for them and go with the majority. You know - lemons to lemonade.
4 - And while you’re making the most practical, efficient and stable decision, you might find that you have to lose something to gain everything. That ‘something’ might be a client or class, but if you’re on the path towards something bigger, you have to make space so the universe can fill it.
Three common ways I see this happen:
One of the most common ways this occurs in schedules is moving clients/classes so they are all in a block of time, and walking away from clients/classes who aren’t able to make that work. While it sounds scary and a little crazy to walk away from money, you’ve now made time + space (hopefully in a time that works best for YOU) to fill it with creative endeavors and purposeful actions. All of that ‘stuff’ we talk about above? THIS is where all that ‘stuff’ goes.
Another common way I see this is when trainer clients raise rates. Inevitably a client of theirs will decline to pay the increased rate, so they part ways. The good news is - so long as you’re raising rates at a % higher than the rate you’re losing clients, you’re still coming out on top - you’re actually making money $$ and working less.
(Speaking of - when was the last time you raised your rates? If it hasn’t been in 2020, it’s been too long.)
Lastly, this happens all the time when I see clients empower themselves and walk away from that which doesn’t serve them, period. Whether it’s a client, class, studio, relationship, social media, you name it - we all have, at some point in our lives (maybe even now), held onto something that sucked energy and time from us that didn’t deserve it.
This isn’t me saying break up with your significant other and go wild, but rather, examine where you spend your time and see what’s really worth your energy.
Which brings us to the last point:
5 - Take only purposeful action in the direction of your goals.
This one requires you to have goals. Real, tangible, mood board, soul affirming goals that you get you out of bed in the morning, and keep you moving all day long.
Goals for Q3, goals for 2020, goals for the next 5 years.
Because if you know where you’re going (or rather, where you want to go), I CAN GET YOU THERE. Promise. But we first have to know where we are going.
See here’s the funny things about BIG goals. They are figure-out-able. Almost everything is, but that’s another blog for another day. Goals can be reverse engineered into digestible pieces that you can tackle each day, week and month. And once we know that we’re reverse engineering it all the way back to your present day, we can SCHEDULE purposeful and actionable items into every single day that will move the ball forward, the needle forward, move YOU forward.
But first you have to have a schedule that gives you time to add in and fill with goodness. First you have to choose you. First you have to decide that done is better than perfect and that your goals can be imperfectly accomplished.
So take that paper and start figuring out your non-negotiables. Start putting yourself in. Start text/calling clients to move them. Set timers. Set goals. You’re going places. We’re going together.