work day

How I Use Time-Blocking to Structure My Work Day

How I Use Time-Blocking to Structure My Work Day

Whether you work part-time or full-time, one job or four, in an office or at home, creating a structure for your work day is important to your productivity, creativity, and ultimately, how you feel about your work.

And for those of you who work for yourself and work from home (at least part of the time), boundaries become a necessary part of structuring your day.

Are you prone to burnout? 
Do you work until late at night, on the weekends, and even on vacation?
Do you struggle to follow-through on certain projects?
Do you lose motivation easily?

Setting a few boundaries, blocking your time, and figuring out what time of day you do your best work can help set you up for success each and every day.

Today, I’m walking you through my own process for structuring my work days.

Like many of you, I wear many hats during the week: church musician, worship planner, piano teacher, blogger, small business owner. Sometimes, it feels like I’m just keeping the plates spinning, not necessarily making any progress (how many of you can relate to that?).  

But, with the help of time-blocking and being intentional about how I use my working hours, I’m beginning to reap the rewards of a more focused, productive work-week.

Tips & Tricks for Tackling Your Email Inbox

Tips & Tricks for Tackling Your Email Inbox

I’ve set boundaries on my email before, but they’ve never stuck for the longterm. Can you relate?

Somehow, I always find myself back to that place of constantly checking my email on my phone throughout the day (sometimes, without even thinking about it). It’s the first thing we reach for when we wake up in the morning and one of the last things we do before we fall asleep at night.

But why check it if you’re not going to respond right away? Why let those messages take up valuable mental space?

You see, I’m one of those people who tends to overthink things. I’m a slow processor and sometimes, it takes me a lot of time to craft the “perfect" response. So, if an email lands in my inbox that needs a thoughtful reply, I let it sit. I tell myself I’ll think about what to say or how to say it. And so, I do. All afternoon. While I’m trying to work on other projects. There’s that email in the back of my head, using up mental energy as I write and rewrite and edit a response in my head. 

A Day in the Life

A Day in the Life

A few years ago, I wrote a "Day in the Life" post. Lots of things have changed since then, so I thought it might be nice to share an updated version with y'all. Come see what a typical day in my life looks like! My desk, in a corner of our cozy living room

9:05 a.m. - I carry my coffee (half espresso, half hot chocolate) to my desk in the living room and turn on my laptop. I check my email to make sure there's nothing urgent, but I don't normally respond to things right away. I prefer to take a little time in the morning to read (articles and a few of my favorite blogs) and check in on social media and our websites. After this, I respond to a few quick emails, proof my newsletter one last time in MailChimp, and schedule it to send.

9 Ways to Recharge During the Work Day

9 Ways to Recharge During the Work Day

Ever feel like you lose momentum as the work day wears on? Been there. I think generally, I'm most productive in the morning hours, but after lunch, I often feel more distracted and just less sharp. Fighting that afternoon slump is tough work! Sometimes, the best solution is to take a quick break. Give yourself 5-10 minutes to refresh and recharge. Get up, lie down, stretch, dance, whatever works for you.

Here are nine simple ways to take a mental break and recharge in the middle of your work day: