As a young entrepreneur, I thought I would pull together a few things that help streamline my daily to-do's. Having been an entrepreneur for around 6 months, I’m just scratching the surface of streamlining my day-to-day. I’m nowhere close to where I’d like to be, but I am personally getting better every day, and a lot of my productivity can be attributed to the apps and suggestions below.
Everything from simple note taking tips, to various apps I use throughout the day, this list will give you a few tips on staying focused and calm.
1. Staying Organized 📓
Staying organized is more than just lip service. It's a necessity. And if it is something you overlook, or don't consistently improve, you're doing yourself and your business a disservice.
Take a trip to the app store on your phone – be it iTunes or Google Play – and you’ll find a litany of apps that’ll help you tackle everything from time tracking, to various Google tools, even meditation apps to help keep you on track.
Apps for Organization/Streamlining To-Do's
Below are a few of my favorite tools and ones that I’ve seen help immensely increase my productivity.
- Basecamp - The life-saving, task-based app is perfect if you’re working with a team, for various clients, or for your self. One of my favorite features is being able to assign things when they’re due as opposed to having a running to-do list. That way you can look in the future and see what’s due, or if you’re someone who works well under pressure, simply get everything done day-of.
- Google Calendar - Google Calendar is one of the main things that helps keep me focused day-to-day. With the ability to install various app widgets on your Andorid home screen, the Google Calendar widget is front and center for me.
- Shazam - Shazam has this awesome new feature allowing you to keep on its services without having to open the app. Because I’m a sponge when it comes to new music, this new feature cuts out a ton of fumbling around with my phone.
- Google Mail - Similar to Google Calendar, my Gmail account is another widget on my phones home screen. As it carries more weight than Google Calendar, the ability to read and respond to e-mails right from the home screen of my phone is a huge win for me in terms of workflow.
- Google Keep - Yup, you guessed it, Google’s notes app is a can’t-miss. Whether you’re an Android user or just someone looking for a good note keeping application, Google Keep may be your best bet. Similar to all of the other apps listed above, this one is especially important when it comes to workflow. And, well, it’s on my home-screen as well.
2. Journaling ✍️
This one is more of a preference, or suggestion, than anything. Journaling long-hand has helped me a ton in terms of headspace. By jotting all of my ideas down on paper before letting them build up in my head, I feel much more clear all throughout the day.
If you can get in the habit of writing in it whenever A) a new idea strikes or B) just to get something out of your head, you’ll have that much more brain power to dedicate to problems that need your attention.
Journaling is one thing that ALTA discusses quite frequently in their guide to being more balanced between work and home life. It's called That Balanced Life and you can check it out here.
3. Health 💪
- This one really goes without saying - the better you eat, the better you feel. Now, I get it, being an entrepreneur is hard. You're working late. Working early. Trying to get a bite to eat wherever you can. Sure, it can be super difficult. But if you make your diet - and feeling good - a priority, you're going to reap the rewards right away.
- Now these are fun. Nootropics are essentially brain pills. They're supplements you can take that are packed with nutrients for your entire body, but with an emphasis on your brain. Check out Focus (for attention, memory) and Mood (for anti-anxiety and mental recuperation) from ALTA.
- Again, an obvious choice., but the endorphins that release when you exercise will keep you going even with the toughest of clients. Running, weight lifting, yoga - anything that pushes you physically will help you mentally, and you'll start to build that beach body in no-time.
4. Sleep 💤
Last but certainly not least on this list is sleep. Personally, I’m still the worst when it comes to sleep. I’ve grossly overlooked the importance of a good mattress. That said, if you can get into a good routine of 7 to 9 hours of sleep or wake up at the end of a sleep cycle, your body will begin to reward you handsomely.
If sleep is one of your biggest weaknesses, try building a pre-bed routine. Read a favorite book 30 minutes before bed. Take a hot bath to really relax your muscles before getting into bed.
A personal favorite of mine that seems to be working very well are blackout curtains and ear plugs.
Wrap It All Up
Look, none of these are a silver bullet, and different strategies are going to work for different people. I just know that these various different ideas have helped me in a number of ways, but I still haven’t mastered being a young entrepreneur. However with the various resources we have at our disposal, and the ideas listed above, I’m certain you and I are both very close to attaining young entrepreneur mastery.
There is an awesome guide that called That Balanced Life that ALTA put together. It goes deep on many of the topics mentioned here like, journaling, staying organized, and maximizing your sleep. I highly recommend you check it out.
This post was contributed by Andy Whisney. Check him out on instagram or his blog.