Set Non-Working Hours, Not Office Hours

blog Apr 18, 2019

 

How many times have you heard, “You need to set office hours!”  Well, if you are like me and juggle a business, motherhood, and a schedule that changes every single day, setting regular office hours is flat out impossible.  If you are working your direct sales business in small 15-minute pockets of time throughout the day, office hours just aren’t doable.

However, you can set NON-working hours.  In fact, I STRONGLY advise you to do that….ASAP.

I’ll be the first to admit….I have secretly looked at my phone and responded to messages while playing a game with my daughter.  I’ve burnt the toast because I was helping a team mate while trying to get breakfast on the table before school.  I’ve driven my husband NUTS “tippity-tapping away” (his words, not mine) on my laptop while we were supposed to be watching a movie together.

Doing everything all the time will drain the life out of you.  And, it will hurt your relationship with your friends and family.

So, what is my #1 tip for female entrepreneurs….especially those in network marketing?  Set “NON office hours.”  Yup…you heard me…you need to set windows of time in your day where you are NOT working and 100% present in that given moment.   Maybe that is time with your kids, a walk, cooking, reading, date night, catching up on “This Is Us”, etc.  Whatever keeps you connected to the people you love and to yourself…you simply MUST prioritize this time.  You need it.  Your family needs it.

Every.  Single.  Day.

After trying for YEARS to set up “Office Hours” for my direct sales business and failing miserably, I finally gave up.  My days and weeks are so fluid it just never worked.  I needed to find a system that could give me the much needed time I need AWAY from my business.  That is when I created my NON Office Hours.

For me, my non-working hours start at 3pm Mon – Fri when I pick up my daughter from school.  From 3 – 5, I am NOT working.  I actually don’t love cooking so I may do some light multi-tasking while I prepare dinner.  After that, dinner time is sacred for our family.  No phones.  No work.  Just family time.  After dinner, I will often check in for a quick 15 – 20 minutes while Grace is taking a bath, etc.

 

I pick TWO nights a week where I will work after my daughter goes to bed.  I communicate that with my husband each week, so expectations are set.  I schedule all of my necessary evening work time for those two nights. That might include coaching calls, training calls, team events, webinars, etc.  I stack them up on those two nights and prepare for it.  I take care of myself during the day to keep my energy high for the evening.

Then, on the nights I am NOT working…..I DON’T WORK.  Period.  Guess what?  Nothing bad has happened.  No one has died because I didn’t respond to a text right away.  I haven’t lost any customers because their order was placed the next morning instead of that evening.  My team and business are still growing.  I still have friends.  And you know what?  My home life has improved 150%!!  I am happier, healthier, and less stressed.  And, my family is more supportive than ever.

So, what tools do I use to do this?  TWO things.  Two very simple things ANYONE can do:

#1:  Do Not Disturb / Downtime Setting on my iPhone

There are some AWESOME features to help you step away from your phone.  If you want to learn about these, scroll to the bottom of this post to download a quick cheat sheet on how to use your phone to help you set non-working hours.

#2: Communication

As a mom, I have learned that my family expects me to be “on-call” for them.  24/7.  I can be in the middle of a live video…which I have told them 20 times about before I start ….and they will still call my name out 10 seconds after I start it.  Don’t tell me it hasn’t happened to you! There is a reason people do videos from their cars and closets…it is the only way we can hide!

However, once I established my non-working hours, I sat down with my family and told them about the changes.  I promised them that I would be 100% present with THEM during my set non-working hours if they…in turn…would support my working time.  Was it awesome right away?  Heck no.  Did it take time?  Heck yes.  However, it gets better every single week.  I let my husband know the two nights I am working and in turn, on my non-working nights, my phone is down.

Because my daughter gets my undivided attention every afternoon for a while, she complains less when I can’t play Go Fish any time she asks.  Does she still complain when I am working?  Of course she does…she is 8.  That is her job.  But, our time together is far more enjoyable now than it used to be (well…most of the time….she IS 8).

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For help getting out of overwhelm and into action, CLICK HERE and snag my Ditch the Overwhelm cheatsheet!

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