How to Stay Focused When You’re Your Own Boss

It’s been a little over a month since I started blogging full-time after graduation and MAN ALIVE are things different! I didn’t realize how difficult it would be to work for myself– I mean, how does one stay productive without a real set schedule or someone else to report to? This past month was definitely a learning experience for me and one of my biggest struggles of being my own boss was staying focused.

The first two weeks into going full-time, I wasn’t really sure how to spend my day. What really stuck to me was after the first two weeks, I didn’t really change. I didn’t set new goals for myself at all! I was so excited to start full-time and I had a bunch of fun projects lined up but…that’s what I would have done even during law school. I thought to myself, what should I be doing differently now? Surely there must be something since this is my career now?!

Part of me thinks that I just needed a break after graduation– a couple of weeks to wind down before I get started on the grind and maybe that was it. However, I noticed that it can be pretty easy to get lost in your long-term goals and aspirations, especially if you’re your own boss. Trust me, I didn’t know what to do with my days until the end of May when I took a moment to reflect on myself and realized that things need to change. I couldn’t allow myself to stay idle and/or only do the same things I would have done while being a part-time blogger. So, how did I break past this wall? I sat down with my chalkboard (yes, I’m a nerd) and wrote down anything and everything that was on my mind. The reason I wasn’t focused all came down to how I set my goals so that’s really what I’m going to talk about here. Here are my tips on how to stay focused and come up with clear, realistic goals and sub-goals! 😚

TIPS ON HOW TO STAY FOCUSED:

  • FIND YOUR WHY: What is it that you want to achieve and why? I put an emphasis on why because if you’re just getting started or you’re feeling lost in your career path, it’s helpful to stop and think about why you’re doing what you’re doing or why you want to get to a certain point. That why is what is going to drive you and motivate you to keep going.
  • BRAIN DUMP. Take a few minutes and write down anything and everything that comes to your mind when you think of your goals and your career. Whatever comes to mind, just jot it all down!
  • ORGANIZE. Look at what you wrote down, take a deep breath as it may be overwhelming, and begin to organize. You can organize your thoughts in so many different ways whether it by category or by long-term goals. I personally like to start by searching for those those long-term goals/buzzwords/phrases that I write and then underneath those, I would begin piecemeal everything together. Not everything will fit nicely in a category, and that’s ok.
  • BREAK IT DOWN. I’m a firm believer of baby steps and not to overwhelm yourself with EVERYTHING all at once. You simply do not want to overhaul your entire life at once! For example, if you want to change the logo on your website, knock it out. You don’t necessarily have to change the ENTIRE website all in one go. That sort of thing. BABY STEPS, y’all!! It’ll make your life so much easier and you’ll feel a lot better knowing that every day or every so often you achieved something small on your list that’ll ultimately get you to where you want to be in the end! 🙂
    • The goal in this step is to think broad and work your way down the funnel, creating little milestones to help you achieve your bigger goals. The key about having effective long-term goals is honestly just simply knowing that that’s where you want to be and placing little tiny checkpoints to get you there.
  • ACCOUNTABILITY. Are you writing all this down? If you are, make sure you give someone that sheet of paper so they can hold you accountable for what you said. If you don’t want to rely on anyone else, then put it in your calendar and set alerts! It’s so important to have a little check-in whether it be from your calendar or a family member/friend/loved one.
  • HAVE A WEEKLY STATUS MEETING. Yes, even if it’s with yourself. Every Sunday (or whatever day works best), reflect on what your mini goals were the previous week, what you achieved, and what you need to improve on for the next week. Setting realistic goals for yourself will help you stay focused because like I said, it’s so easy to get lost in the grand scheme of things and that alone can overwhelm you to the point where you feel unmotivated altogether. My husband and I started having team meetings after speaking to the Chloédigital team a couple of weeks ago. I learned so much from the girls at Chloédigital (including Chloé herself!) and they inspired my husband and I to have weekly meetings of our own to really figure out what’s been done, how productive we’ve been and what we can improve on overall the next week.
    • Notice how I said the next week? Baby steps.

I hope you all enjoyed a little 1 month update after I started blogging full-time! Like I said in my post-graduation blog post, I really want to be open with you guys during this journey of mine. I want to share the all the good and the struggles that come with it because that’s what’s real. It took me a couple of weeks to get focused but that’s ok! I learned a lot in just one month when it came to fixing that. If you’re self-employed and you’re your own boss, I hope I shared helpful tips with y’all! Let me know your thoughts. Chat soon, loves!

xox, Nita

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10 Comments

  1. Laura B
    June 29, 2017 / 11:37 AM

    Great tips! It can be so hard to focus sometimes!

  2. June 29, 2017 / 12:34 PM

    accountability… A M E N!!!!! so needed to read this today OXOX

  3. June 29, 2017 / 12:38 PM

    This is always a tough one!! I’ve been my own boss for over 10 years now and it never gets easier!! Great tips!

  4. Nicole of What Nicole Wore
    June 29, 2017 / 4:33 PM

    These are great tips! I know I get overwhelmed at times being a part-time blogger so I imagine it would be tough to determine a plan being FT.

  5. June 30, 2017 / 10:07 AM

    I really needed to read this today! I am not full-time yet but want to be! This was encouraging and enlightening!

  6. June 30, 2017 / 1:11 PM

    Great tips! I can totally relate to all of this! Being your own boss takes lots of disciple, but it’s a nice perk!

  7. July 2, 2017 / 9:39 PM

    These are all such good tips, even if you don’t work for yourself, you can totally apply these to almost any job. Thanks for sharing!

  8. maggie@blushandblooms.com
    July 3, 2017 / 7:19 PM

    Thanks for the advice! Sometimes it is so hard to stay focused!

  9. Lauren
    July 5, 2017 / 8:26 AM

    This is such solid advice, and super helpful! Sometimes I find I get distracted so easily!

    Lauren | http://www.discodaydream.com

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