Most planners don’t work.
If you’re a WAHM like me, then you have probably never found a planner that completely fits your needs.
My normal day is not the standard 9-5, where I can just leave it at the door when I get home. Because I’m a mom and I work at home, my workday not only doesn’t have a clear start and end time, but it also means my obligations go all the way from childcare to high level business strategy, from potty training my son to cleaning up my client’s copy.
The fact is that if you are the primary stay-at-home parent, you’re always on the clock. And if you’re trying to raise kids and run a business, you need some systems in place so things don’t fall apart while you’re working towards your goals.
Why traditional planners don’t work for you
It’s pretty simple.
- You don’t work in 8 hour increments.
- When you *do* have time, you spend it trying to figure what the heck you should be doing
- They only acknowledge one part of your life, excluding other goals, needs, and desires.
- Planners are for to-do lists, not achieving goals
Why I ended up making a planner
There are so many things written on productivity, and I’ve read hundreds of articles, books, and expert opinions on how to get things done and tried as many ways of staying focused and on task. I’m also an ENFP (read: bad at systems, revolts against routine).
But after much trial and error, it turns out I’m not bad at systems – I just needed one that made sense for me. It needed to support me in business and life. When I break it down, I really have three jobs: CEO, Domestic Goddess, and Performer.
The business needs to keep running. Meals need made. And my soul needs fed by the stage.
This is my normal, and there is no planner that did that for me.
Thus, the Work at Home Productivity Pack was born.
We start high level and go deep in a hurry. I like the idea of a yearly theme, because it discourages the whole “resolutions” thing. Frankly, I cannot trust my resolve to accomplish anything. I need a plan that reminds me of my big goals and breaks it down into achievable steps. Additionally, I want the spaciousness to include the slower, daily pleasures I’ve come to appreciate so much. That is my good life, and I can get it with the right strategy.
Excellent strategy leads to effective action.
There are five levels of strategy we work with in the planner:
- Year – Yearly Theme
- Quarter (appx. 90 days) – Strategic Goal
- Month to Fortnight (30-14 days) – Quarterly Objectives
- Week – Mission
- Day – To Do
Look simple? Good. It should. Here’s how to implement the planner.
- Choose a yearly theme. It doesn’t matter if it is one word or a short phrase. Keep it short, broad, and focused on what you need most for the next 365 days.
- Choose 4 strategic goals. Yes, just four. A few examples are: write the book, launch a major new offering, stay at home with newborn, remodeling the kitchen, or something else major in your life or business.
- Choose 3-5 quarterly objectives. These are the big projects that make up your strategic goal in any given quarter. (You may notice that only gives you up to 48 weeks of work. That is intentional.) Examples include create your new offer, booking a certain number of gigs, redesign the kitchen, or completing an existing client project.
- Choose up to 2-4 weekly missions. Break it down even further. Maybe this week you have to write the copy assets for your new offer, call 25 new prospects, paint the kitchen, or make enough meals to freeze so no one starves after you have the baby.
- Craft your Top 10 To Do list with care. With the sort of breakdown you already have, the daily tasks should flow fairly easily. As a general rule, I use 3-5 of my to do’s on working towards my big goal, and save the rest for everything that pops up.
That’s it. It removes the guesswork of the day-to-day, keeps you abreast of major goals, and makes sure your focus stays in sight.
So far, this system is working incredibly well for me. This quarter, I’m set to meet or surpass all of my quarterly objectives, including:
- Launching The Minimalist Mom
- Booking 40 gigs through Princess Parties NW (my newest company, launched this quarter)
- Launch retreat with Nina (join the mailing list for details when it launches.)
I hope you get some serious usage out of these. You can download the planner sheets here, or you can get them as part of The Minimalist Mom package. Enjoy!