Think differently about your ideal week

"Before anything else, preparation is the key to success."
Alexander Graham Bell

I first heard about an ideal week 10 years ago.

I was sitting at AREC (search "AREC" on Youtube for some of the best content any agent can watch) and there was a giant screen showing a weekly calendar that was colour coded like it was a packet of skittles. I got it. I should be more organised. Discipline will set you free is the current lingo surrounding planning your life out in set intervals.

So I made myself an ideal week. I spent an hour putting everything I needed to achieve down on my calendar. I planned. But here's the thing, I never once stuck to it. My weekly ideal schedule had become more of a pipe dream that my reality.

Sound familiar?

I knew when we were getting close to launching Homesearch that I had to take more control of my time. Otherwise I'd never be available for our users, and never be available for my wife, my friends and myself.

I had googled “design ideal week” and stumbled upon this post: How to better control your time by designing your ideal week by Michael Hyatt. 

After stumbling upon this article, I had a much clearer idea of how to create a framework for my week that would empower me to feel more focused by theming days of the week, and even parts of the day, rather than pigeon holing set tasks into set times.

Structure gives freedom. More importantly, structure gives you flexibility. Counterintuitive right? Let's figure out what I mean together.

I don't naturally like structure. My school teachers will attest to this. It's not something that comes easily to me and I would wager, if you're an estate agent reading this - you're probably agreeing with me too. And it's for this reason that rigid ideal weeks don't really suit us.

So what can we do?

Understand your time

Take the time (pun intended) to track where you're spending it. Understand what tasks take what amount of time. You can't make anything "ideal" unless you understand it first. How long do you spend making calls? How long does it actually take to make the right amount of connections on those calls? How long are you exercising? How long do your valuations take? How long does a viewing take?

Understand what tasks make you an estate agent and how long these each take.

Have a theme

Rather than chop your time up into strict 90 minute intervals that you have no chance of sticking to, give yourself a theme (or themes) for the day. This is what I'm running with at the moment.

Monday: Follow up, Mentorship, Blog writing (yep, I'm writing this on a Monday) and product development around upcoming Homesearch features
Tuesday: Prospecting. Tuesdays are about shameless business development. 
Wednesday: Feedback day. I want to talk to our users as often as is possible.
Thursday: Content planning, marketing creation and user feedback
Friday: Prospecting. We might only be soft-launched, but we need to grow
Saturday: Wife time
Sunday: Rest up, Netflix and chill and plan the week ahead

Having themes allows me to stay "on theme" but manage my tasks around that. I also include personal time, exercise and a Wednesday night date night in there each week too.

The last step is to commit.

Figure out what has to be done and book it in. Treat your themes like you would a flight to your dream holiday destination. You wouldn't miss that for the world, don't miss your key tasks just the same.

If you have a system that already works for you, that’s great. But if you find yourself feeling a bit frayed, it might be worth taking some time to re-evaluate your calendar, and plan out your week.