Weekly routines for success are something I’m fascinated with—nerdy, but true.
In the video and blog below, you get to hang out with me all week—I’m sharing 3 routines I do every week, that have both worked for when I had no team, and now with a team, had no kids, and now have a kid.
In this post, you’re gonna hear how I do my:
- Daily batch routine
- Weekly prep session on Sunday
- Weekend planning as my week winds down on Wednesday or Thursday
- BONUS – I’ll tell you all about my email templates that make managing my inbox wayyyyy less of a hassle.
If you like productivity training like this, you won’t want to miss my FREE workshop, “Design Your Time: How to Get More Done & Get Freed Up to Focus as a Creative”—grab your seat below.
DAILY TASK BATCHING
Ok, so let me start with my daily batch routine: this is something I’ve done for so long that now I don’t even think about it.
I am a full-time working mom, so I am working normal business hours during the day Monday through Thursday.
One of the biggest questions I get asked is “How do you churn out so much content and work?” For me, my focus is my secret weapon to getting things done. Multitasking is a total myth, so anytime I can nix multitasking in my life, I get more done.
So, distractions are actually a BIG reason our productivity gets shot and our time gets lost.
This is due to something called task switching—sometimes called context switching. This is when you flit from one activity to another, forgetting that your brain has to play catch-up and get itself aligned to the new context every time you switch.
A study by Dr. Gloria Mark (cited in Inc. Magazine) found that it takes an average of 25 minutes to resume a task and get back in that state of flow after being interrupted. Yikes! (I’m guessing no one has a few spare half-hours to lose in a day? Yeah, me either.)
There are tasks I used to do every week that have ebbed and flowed as I’ve grown with a team and taken some of these tasks off my plate—but for the most part, they’ve been able to expand as I’ve grown. That’s why I like them.
Here’s what you do: Pick one focus for the day, and do most—if not all—things related to that theme on that day. This helps you keep the main thing the main thing.
So here’s how I start my week: on Mondays, I kick off with marketing for my OWN business, because after the weekend I’m fresh, creative, and most excited to start work again. It’s easier to go back to work when I know I’ll be working for myself!
I look at the overall marketing plan and strategy, look at metrics from the week before, and get my email newsletter copy written and ready to be proofed and edited. Then, I batch and automate 5ish Facebook posts and 3-4 Instagram posts, make any website edits that need to be updated, and spend the bulk of my time getting blogs and YouTube scripts drafted and ready.
Mondays are also the day we have our team call, so I can really look at where our numbers are, how are spots are filling, and make a note of any of that while I sketch out the upcoming weeks’ content down the road.
Tuesdays are for client work and there when I actually do the research and writing for any of our one-to-one client projects—if it’s a day rate client, I’ll start the day at 9 a.m. doing research before my first call with the client and then hop on that. Tuesdays are long. Like realllllly long. But, I love them. (Also, this doesn’t mean I don’t proof or do little bits of work on any client work during other days—because sometimes that’s necessary—but the bulk of the work is done on Tuesdays.)
Also on Tuesdays, I’ll do any admin tasks that come my way related to client work, like confirming my Acuity availability and calendars are up to date, and if my head of client services has any questions on proposals, contracts or scheduling, plus we do fun things like order client gifts, and take some time to intentionally check in on our recent clients, etc.
Wednesdays are for product development. This is a chance to be my own client! I’ll clean things up inside any of my programs, update freebies, make new ones, update shop items, work on any visual branding work, update email funnels, or write copy for my own business. Recently, I wrote a mini-email funnel for an affiliate product I talk about often, and it helped us increase sales by $1,600 in 20 days—yay!
Thursdays are for meetings and calls. They can get pretty full, and I have to be sure I’m well-hydrated and ready to really dig in face-to-face with people. But, they’re also one of the only days I get to have real-time conversations with people, so I look forward to them!
And, ahhhhh Fridays … I try to take Fridays off, at least this summer as I get used to being a mom! I do spend a little bit of time going through our personal and business finances. And, I’ll empty the bin on my desk, clearing things off my desk, and making sure everything’s back in its place before I come back on Monday.
Day batching has been one of the most integral parts of running my business efficiently—it’s like having a bunch of buckets or bins on my desk, and just dropping the task in the bucket instead of stopping everything to do it.
WEEKLY PREP SESSION
Getting a rhythm set before I head into Monday is actually a step to make sure I don’t freak out about having too much to do the minute I sit down to my computer on Mondays. (Ain’t nobody got time for a case of the Mondays.)
I’ve created a Sunday weekly prep routine that I swear by, and the whole thing takes just about an hour.
This is how it breaks down:
First, I walk through our calendar and write in the big rocks for the week. my husband’s work schedule, doctor’s appointments, date nights, meetings, appointments, podcast interviews, calls, things like that. I also include my “PRESENT” mornings. (More on those here.) I definitely like to make sure I have whitespace here.
Next, I plan our meals for the week and put in any orders with Amazon Prime. I really only cook three nights of the week since Wes, my husband, does shift work. It’s usually me by myself at night and he’ll get home between midnight and 1 a.m., so we definitely do our fair share of picking up food from local restaurants.
I wrap it up with a weekly check-in journaling session and prompt. Again, this part of the routine really only takes about 20 minutes. (I LIKE journaling, so I could knock myself out here for more like an hour but that’s not the stage of life I’m in!) I reread my goals, record my big wins, record lessons learned, evaluate how I did with my “big 3” from last week, do a big list sweep, and record how I’ll adjust moving forward to pick my NEXT big 3.
WEEKLY WRAP UP
The final piece of this puzzle is weekend planning. I’m a big believer that to really get away from work to rest on the weekends, I need to be intentional about that time and my expectations for it.
So on Wednesday or Thursday, here’s what I’ll journal through:
Ok, so maybe you’re thinking … “Ash, but what about email?” Where does it fit?
Welp … I’ve created a guide of the 28 email templates you need to have ready to go in your business. Because, as you can probably imagine, I don’t set aside time to just hang out in my email inbox on the daily. Blech.
And. before you get carried away thinking I’ve got this mastered because it’s “just how I am” … if you don’t feel like you’re putting the right measures in place to even dream about stepping away from your business, holy cow, I have felt like you before and I have BIG opinions on it. I’ve got another video you can watch next where I talk about Work/Life Balance Tips for Creatives and 4 Ways to Take More Time Off—mostly because I had to learn the lessons the hard way.