2. Make a specific plan to achieve your goals. For me this usually manifests itself in to-do lists; mostly written on random pieces of paper throughout my day. My productivity without a to-do list is way way less than when I have one. You can make your plan any way you like but the more specific and intentional you are about it he more you will get done.
3. Get motivated and stay positive.
Nothing drags me down more than feeling defeated. We've got to keep ourselves motivated, especially during the moments when we just don't feel like doing the things on our list. Maybe you need to take a look at your goals and remember why you're pushing yourself in the first place. Maybe you need to give yourself a little pep talk in your car about how much you can do it! (don't act like you never do this—I do it ALL the time. I'm only embarrassed when I get caught!). Maybe you need to look back at a photo of something that reminds you of a time when you did accomplish a tough goal; whatever works for you.
4. Don't compare yourself to others. I think there's a lot of (unnecessary) pressure in the world to be like or have as much as someone else. Don't do this to yourself because it will only drag you down! Healthy competition is totally fine but if you find yourself trying to live up to someone else's standard you will probably just end up feeling negative about yourself. And feeling negative is not a great way to get anything done. Live up to your standard of yourself, not someone else's.
5. Say no sometimes, even when you really want to say yes. The best example I can think of is that Elsie and I used to be able to do every interview and guest content writing opportunity that came our way. I think it's SO flattering when a fellow blogger/online publication/etc. wants to feature us. That's so kind! But I could spend a lot more hours a week filling out questions when what I should be doing is creating content for the blog, taking care of payroll issues at our shop or hanging out with my family. So even though it makes me feel a little bit like a jerk every time I have to turn someone down; I have to. It's important so I can have enough time for my goals. This might require you to grow a thicker skin or be ok with not getting to do a few fun things that you used to—but keep in mind that this small sacrifice will help you get to the things that are the most important to you.
6. Reward yourself for a job well done. Elsie and I are big believers in celebrating milestones and getting little mini rewards for big goals accomplished. And just for the record, this doesn't have to be money driven. some days, when I have a bunch of things on my to-do list that I am dreading (calling the department of revenue, answering my overflowing email box, standing in line at the post office with a ton of packages, etc.) I make myself a promise that when I get it all done I get to take the evening off to paint my nails and catch up on New Girl. Rewards can be as big or as small as you need, they are meant to motivate you.
7. Build a great team.
We are so lucky at Red Velvet (our local shop) because we currently have three lovely young ladies who work the majority of the open hours at our shop while Elsie and I finish up our first book. We realized about a month ago that although we love working in our local shop we just needed the extra time in order to be out taking pictures and creating content. So even though we still have many responsibilities at Red Velvet, having this team helps us to accomplish more than we could on our own. Ask for help when you need it.
8. Work in bulk when you can, or multi-task. This is also a lesson we've learned over the years that absolutely helps us to be able to create all the beautiful content you see here on the blog. For example, if I know I'm baking a recipe for a feature then I know I will have some time while it's in the oven. With a little extra planning I could create another feature during the bake time, or answer emails , or see how many of my house chores I can complete in that time. And don't waste time doing little errands over and over; buy all supplies at once in one big trip. Working in bulk takes planning; but it can totally help you do more in less time.
9. Eliminate time wasters. I'm not saying you should never take a break or have a moment to blow off steam—we all need that. But it's best to set a time limit on these types of activities or to cut out time wasters you dont need. For example, I love instagram. I love looking at instragram and posting pictures and looking at others pictures. It's fun! But I usually set a time limit, like 3 minutes, to check my feed. Otherwise before I know it I have looked up who my friends are following and what pictures they are posting and then 20 minutes later I realize I really didn't accomplish anything... oops.
10. Chill out. No one is Superman. No matter how awesome you are (or, in my case, think I am) you will probably have a day, or even a season, where you feel like you are running behind all the time. Don't let this feeling ruin your life. Even if you are a little behind because of circumstances you can't control you don't want to take this feeling out on those you are close to, or it ruin your day. Too much stress can make us sick, it's no joke. So chill out, slow down and believe that your best effort is good enough. xo. Emma and Elsie