Affiliate links may be used in this post. I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you if you make a purchase through my affiliate link. Read my full disclosure policy here.
Do you have a 9-5 job and want to create a side hustle or passion project outside of it? It’s great to have exciting dreams and ideas, but so many people go through life unable to find the time outside of a traditional job to actually make those things happen. In today’s “How She Actually Does It” interview, Mia from She Dreams All Day is sharing her detailed planning process that allowed her to create a successful online business while working full-time. By using this process consistently, she is able to see the direct results of her efforts paying off time and time again as she works towards her goals. Keep reading to learn about her step-by-step process and overall mindset strategies that allow her to turn her passion into a thriving business.
How often and when do you set goals for yourself?
I always have my Google Doc with all my goals open and ready to go in the morning.
I review and check-in with my goals daily.
I have goals set for the next 5, 3, and one year into the future. In addition to my yearly goals, I also have my monthly, weekly and daily goals.
I break my big vision and my dream life down into smaller manageable action steps that I can take today and tomorrow.
It’s all about taking the best next step.
Progress may be unrecognizable on a day to day basis, but by just taking action and showing up for yourself daily will make an extraordinary impact on your personal growth in the long run.
I am proof of this. I started my business a little over a year ago and I made a promise to myself that I would, no matter what, continue to show up every day and take action.
And I did, and now I have a successful online business and get to motivate other dreamers to chase their dreams every day.
There is so much power in setting goals, honoring your plans and taking action.
Talk me through your weekly planning process
I do my weekly planning on Sundays, in the afternoon – after my weekly blog post goes live.
The very first thing that I do is review the past week.
I ask questions like:
- What were my weekly wins? Big or small (I celebrate either way).
- Any challenges this week?
- Lessons learned? Any mistakes that I can learn from?
- What didn’t go as planned?
- How can I improve next week?
- What needs to be rescheduled?
- How can I make this next week the best one yet?
I always review the past week before I get into planning out the next one. That way I know where my sole focus and attention should be for the coming week and if I need to change course in certain areas or not. Awareness is always the first step to change.
My weekly planning:
Step 1: I do a thought download of all the things I have going on in my mind, activities, to-do’s, things I want to do, things I need to do and so on. I get it all out. The good, the bad, the ugly.
Step 2: I take a step back from my list, take a deep breath and review it.
Step 3: Next, I arrange all my to-do’s in order of importance. I always start with the most important task first. I do this either on paper or in Google Docs.
Step 4: Then, I schedule my to-do items on my calendar for the next week. I allow a specific time frame to get the task done in and I make sure I get it done. This is how I get more done in less time. If I schedule more time to get something done, it will take me more time. I also color code to make it look real pretty. ✨
Step 5: I trash the to-do list I just created and I honor my calendar for the week – no matter what.
What tools do you find indispensable for staying organized?
I love The Productivity Planner and I simply cannot live without it.
I use one digital calendar (Google Calendar) and one physical, The Productivity Planner from Intelligent Change.
You don’t need another planner, you simply need a plan.
I’m not a big fan of using too many tools to stay organized and productive. I don’t want to get sucked into that planning frenzy of having to many tools available to me.
Having too many planners is just procrastination in disguise.
How do you structure your workdays?
I have a full-time job in addition to my online business so my secret to balancing the two is to wake up really early and always honor my calendar for my biz.
My prime time (when I am most creative and when I tend to be more focused) is during those first crispy hours of the day, so waking up early to get a head start on my biz works well for me.
I usually wake up around 5:30 AM and do my content creation first thing. I never check email or social media until at least 9 AM. This also helps me to stay focused and on track.
After my 9-5, I do the tasks that don’t necessarily require as much brainpower, like creating and scheduling pins, answering emails, comments and general website maintenance.
I sometimes also work through my lunch break.
When juggling an online business and a 9-5 you gotta take advantage of all the time you can get your hands on.
What do you do when you feel stuck or overwhelmed?
I have a very simple answer to this assumedly complicated question.
I sit in silence for at least 10 minutes and focus on my breathing.
Meditation unlocks creativity and it helps to de-stress my sometimes-overloaded mind.
Taking a walk in silence or listening to an inspirational audiobook will also do the trick.
What is your favorite productivity book or who is your favorite productivity teacher?
I love everything Brooke Castillo does and teaches.
I am a part of her Self Coaching Scholars program too and I highly recommend it to anyone looking to uplevel their life immensely.
How has your approach to productivity changed over time?
The minute I got into personal development and learned all about the true magic of planning for the results I want ahead of time, everything changed for me.
I never plan a task, I plan for the results I expect to get in the given time frame.
I haven’t looked back and I continue to learn, grow and produce more as time goes by.
I have uplevelled my productivity game to the max by learning this simple trick.
Bonus Questions! What is your favorite kind of pen to write with?
My pastel highlighters. Does that count? I have a favorite pen too. I don’t know its name, but it has blue ink, and it was actually a hand-me-down from my boyfriend’s grandfather.
More about Mia!
Mia is a blogger, introvert, dreamer, motivator and life coach over at SheDreamsAllDay.com where she devotes her time to help dreamers achieve more, live happily and above all go from full-time dreamers to full-time achievers.
Learn more about Mia and She Dreams All Day by heading over to her blog.