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Networking Interview #6: Time Management & Work Life Balance

Posted on the 23 March 2012 by Classycareergirl @classycareer

Today in my networking challenge I am interviewing ChaChanna Simpson. ChaChanna is a motivational speaker and small business and life coach for women entrepreneurs at her company, Your Stellar Star. I am so excited to share with you her tips about time management and stress so thank you ChaChanna!

In case you are reading this at work and can’t watch the video, you can read all of the great advice below instead!

1) What are your time management strategies and how can we complete all of our tasks in our day?

I like to talk about managing yourself better than managing your tasking. I think it is more that we know what we do, but we just don’t do it.  When you have the excuse of you don’t have enough time, 1) when multi-tasking is multi failing. We put so many things on our plate because we want to get everything done.  The internet has trained us that we have to get everything done now.  But, you can’t get it all done and you aren’t really focusing on anything. So instead pick the top things that you can focus on.  We also underestimate the time that something is going to take us. If you don’t limit the time of the project, it will take the entire day.  So block out time and do the project from this time to this time and don’t put anything else on in the Internet.  Also, think of the top three things that you need to get done each day and focus on those.

The other tip is especially for women, we have a tendency to let other people’s priorities come before ours because we want to help everybody.  Many times we help other people that we don’t have enough time remaining to get our own jobs done.  Sometimes, that can become a pattern because someone else can start expecting you to always help them. As women, we are afraid to say no sometimes because we don’t want to hurt other people’s feelings.  But, they will be fine.  You have to get your stuff done so just say no.

There are also a lot of tasks that will be on your daily tasks that you just hate. If you don’t want to do it, just take it off your list. Sometimes we think that just because we put it on our list, we have to get it done but you don’t.  If it isn’t going towards your professional or personal goals, drop it. It’s OK, just drop it.

Also, at the beginning of the week, I list the things I want to accomplish for that week. I have primary tasks which are things that I must do, secondary tasks are not that important yet, but they will be and then I have ongoing tasks which happen every week and I have personal tasks so you don’t forget about yourself such as doing yoga or reading a book or something fun.

2) How can we recognize the signs of burnout and how can we eliminate burnout?

When I talk about burnout, I equate it with Superwoman.  The workshop that I do is called Superwoman is dead.  I call it that because we like to be everything and do everything for everyone. BUT, even Superwoman wasn’t Superwoman.  She would have her powers for a certain amount of time and then they would go away.  So why are we killing ourselves and trying to do everything?  In organizations, sometimes there are only a few who are doing the work of the many and that can be really annoying.  But you have to let go and let someone else do it. When women suffer from the Superwoman complex, it is really self inflicted. Your body will tell you when you are burning out. You will start to have headaches, physical ailments, colds, flus and you will get sleepless and depressed.  So if you think you can just work through it, your body will shut down.  It can affect your relationships and is not a good thing so if you are suffering try to relax. What you can do is start saying no and sit back.

Also, come up with a morning practice that works for you instead of jumping out of bed and going to your to do list. Wake up 15 minutes earlier and just lay there.  Sit and prepare for the day and do meditation and enjoy the quiet for 15 minutes.  Also, pick up a hobby or creative outlet to express yourself.  You can change your eating and exercise habits can help you as well.

3) How can we build up your self-confidence so we can create the stellar life that we deserve?

Sometimes people are uncomfortable around you when you are confident and they don’t know what to do around you.  Sometimes confidence is mistaken for being full of yourself but I really work hard to tell my clients that it is good to have confidence and high self esteem. Self-confidence is having belief in your talents and your abilities and if you don’t believe it, how is someone else going to believe it?  Especially in your career, you have to be able to sell yourself.  We need to put ourselves on the forefront and because men have no problem walking into a room and telling you how great they are.  When women walk into a room, we will be quiet, meek , we won’t talk about our skills.

Start tracking and celebrating your wins.  It doesn’t have to be life changing but we all have little wins throughout the day. Write down how your life was 1-3 years ago.  And then write how it is now and how you have changed and how your life has changed positively.  It may not change the world right now, but you are on track to changing your world.  There are wins that you have that need to be celebrated and recognized.  I also create a win folder and I collect things that motivate me.  Also, ask your friends what they like and admire about you because we never see ourselves how other people see us. Write down what they say in your journal.  And start saying thank you when someone compliments you!

4) What are your tips to starting a business while working full time?

Don’t quit and jump into the business.  If you have never run a business before, it is going to take time to grow and when you don’t have money coming in, it can become extremely stressful.  When you are starting your business, getting your time management together is a top priority.  It is important that you make time to relax otherwise you are going to be really stressed out and that doesn’t make a good business person at all.  Also, know what your goal is for your business.  Is it just to do it part-time or to eventually make the leap from employee to entrepreneur?  Until you know your destination, it is hard to figure out how to get there.  I call it the stellar life vision, what does your business and life look like when it is as amazing as it is going to be?  Figure out how you really want your life to be, not just your business but in your health, your finances and your relationships.  Also, know who your clients are.  Many people who start a business think that everyone is a client.  But, everyone cannot be your client.  There are clients there specifically just for you and you have to know where to find them and how to talk to them and you have to know what they want.  Many times business owners give their clients what they thought they wanted and needed but they are completely wrong.  I teach my clients to do surveys instead of guessing and being completely wrong.

Also, have financial goals.  If you don’t have a number, how are you going to know when you hit your goal and how will you know what you need to do to get there?  What products are you going to create?  How much do you need to charge?  Also, have networking goals because networking is extremely important.  From networking can come strategic alliances and referrals.  I tell my clients to go to networking events twice and month and to work on following up.  So build that foundation so that when you do take that leap, you can be successful.

5) This question I ask at the end of all of my interviews, what do you wish you would have known when you were a young professional woman just starting out in her career?

I wish I would have known that the career I started in didn’t necessarily have to be the career I stopped with.  I was really stressed when I started out because I picked this plan and it wasn’t working and I didn’t really like it as much as I thought I would. I didn’t really know that I could be flexible. I wish I would have known that I could have left that path earlier and gone on and done something else. There is freedom in your career and you don’t have to stick with one career.  You can be so many things, you don’t have to stick with any one career.

6) If people want to learn more about you where can they find you online?

You can stalk ChaChanna at so many places!  The main place is at her website, Your Stellar Star or Twitter.

What tip from the interview are you going to implement?


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