With a house to run, dog, cat, guinea pig, chickens, other half and 1 year old to chase around my “spare” time is precious. Unfortunately sitting aimlessly scouring the internet after reading why Jennifer Aniston is angry at the press clicking link after link is not an option (admit, we’ve all done it – unless you don’t have access to the internet at work, wise employer!)
It’s taken me at least 6 weeks to get into a routine with my working week. I call it working week as I am no longer contracted to 9am-5.15pm Monday to Friday anymore. The tiny human comes first and as we are very lucky to have help from family, this has structured my time. Instead, my week consists of the following “flexible” work times :
- Monday 10.30am – 6pm
- Tuesday 8.30pm – finish
- Wednesday 7am – 6pm
- Thursday 8.30pm – finish
- Friday 10.30am – 2pm
- Saturday and Sunday available as required / depending how much work!
When I say flexible, I mean that the above can change. I can swap Mondays to Tuesdays depending on my awesome family. Fridays I usually have time to organise my own things but with putting the above times in my diary I know I can book meetings / work in at the above times (most) weeks.
Most importantly these are my times, the times I can manage, I can choose to work or not work (if I lose my diary I think I may lose my mind!) it seems that the weeks fly by and I no longer have those days when looking at the clock thinking an hour has passed when actually 5 minutes has – why is this different when you need to get up in the morning?
I know when I can fit meetings in and know when I need to say no to friends to meet for that coffee or swimming with the tiny ones. It gives me focus which I need to commit to when I will sit in front of the laptop which I plan each week.
Every Sunday evening I sit and plan my week, creating my diary for the week against my to do list (lists work for me but not for everyone) it organises where I need to be, what I need to plan or do in advance for meetings and when I am going to do my own work and my clients.
Being virtual means I can do work late at night (depending on the task) but available during the day if my clients need me. Luckily so far this has worked well for the household, work and my clients so am hoping this continues without issue!
It takes a lot of getting used to, saying no to particular meeting times and fitting around other things which may not be work but I’ve found once you change your mindset it becomes second nature without the guilt or need to say yes to everyones requirements.