This question came up in my group:
“Has anyone got any tips on how to manage your time and regulate the hours that you work? I am finding it quite difficult feeling like I’m at buyers’ bec and call at all times – do you guys have specific hours of the day of days of the week that you ‘take off’ ? Especially with Kik messages going to my phone I feel like it never feels like I’m not working and I’m getting a bit burnt out”
This is such a great question and I’ve spoken to it a few times on the podcast.
When I first started selling panties online, I was literally on my phone all the time.
I’d log in to my panty selling platform as soon as I woke up. Be on it pretty much all through the days and right up until I went to sleep.
And this carried on for months.
So much so my husband was starting to complain that I wasn’t off my phone. He was right.
I’d say that in the beginning, when you’re just starting out, you really do run the risk of doing this. It’s hard to switch off and anyone starting a business and learning the ropes will experience that.
Every new business exhausts it’s business owner in the beginning.
It’s a steep learning curve and the nature of the business is you need to be online and ready to sell when your customer is ready to buy!
Time zones are important too! For me in Spain, I was up at 7am in time for the USA market to be online at night and looking to chat and buy. Then, things would calm down when the Americans were asleep before picking back up again in my evening.
So yeah, it’s important to know what time zones you’re playing with and when are the busiest times on your platform.
It’s also important to factor in the hours you can work whilst realising that because you are your own boss, you are very unlikely to tell yourself to stop working. That’s the reality.
I experienced this very recently when creating Pics That $ell. I worked so hard over the days that I started to feel my throat get sore, feel like I needed to step away from the screen and go watch a sitcom. I KNEW I was on the cusp of doing myself some fucking damage if I didn’t step away.
The trick is to be able to do that before it gets too late and you make yourself ill.
Plenty of sellers end up working until 3am and that’s a recipe for disaster. You need sleep. You need sustenance. You need to take care of yourself because YOU ARE YOUR BUSINESS.
Learn to recognise the signs of you overdoing it and as soon as you register one, have something that you will do instead. For me, it’s go watch a comedy or paint or something.
I guess the first thing I’d say is even though the nature of this business is very up and down and you can’t always pinpoint when you’re likely to make a sale or not, here’s what you can do to make sure you use your time effectively.
Write down the hours you’d like to work based on what you CAN do (because of other things going on like work or family) and write down what hours you’d ideally like to do. What I’m saying here is just because you can work five hours after work doesn’t mean you should.
Write down all the tasks you have to do for your job and roughly how long each takes you each day or week.
Here are some:
- Take pics
- Create adverts on platforms
- Contact customers
- Post on main page on platforms
- Message customers
- Make videos (premade or custom)
- Social media
Now, when it comes to messaging customers, it’s difficult to really assign a time frame to. It’s not like you can be in the middle of a conversation and then tell the guy you’re clocking off now when you think he’s just about to buy. The truth is you have to roll with the punches when it comes to an interested guy who might want to purchase!
The next thing you want to do is assign a level of importance to each activity.
For me, messaging customers is way more important than posting on overview. And because all my profiles are set up the way I want them, I don’t have to prioritise making adverts or even taking pictures. I now have over 300 stock images I use in my work and so there’s no priority there. That said, if I was on Onlyfans (I’m taking a break) then it would be a priority for me to take weekly pics for Onlyfans to tide me over the coming week.
I have a list of things I must do every day when it comes to my business and these are the top priority tasks that if I don’t do, my business doesn’t move forward.
You need to identify what those priorities are for you and let the less ‘return on investment’ tasks fall by the wayside if you don’t have the time for them.
So to recap:
What are the warning signs that tell you you’re working too hard (can be feeling physically shit or your partner/kids telling you they haven’t seen you in weeks!)
What will you do when you realise you’re starting to burn out – make sure you do it! If you don’t unwind, you’ll make yourself ill.
What time have you got available to work on your business?
What time would you ideally like to work on your business?
What are the tasks you have to do each day/week to move your business forward based on where you’re at right now?
Are you willing to forego some time in the beginning to get things moving? It WILL take some sacrifice to get things off the ground!
What are the high priority tasks that have the most impact?
What are the busiest times on your platform? Do you need to get up an hour earlier?
Schedule your high-return tasks in the time slots you have available.
It’s never going to be super easy. Some times you will work all the hours and see seemingly no return. Sometimes you’ll hit a run of orders.
You do not have to work all the hours but when you’re just in the beginning stages of starting your business OR you’re just enjoying it so much, the chances are you’ll be doing your thing A LOT.
It will calm down once things get established and you have a regular customer base you can rely on.
Take it easy, mamma!