Patty Kreamer, CPO® joins FlexShares' Special Guest blog series to provide unique insights on the topic of managing stress through time and task management.
Patty recently joined us on The Flexible Advisor podcast to talk about our latest Advisor Wellness study. She shares ideas for managing stress, planning for work and business development in a post-Covid world.
Patty helps overwhelmed financial advisors take control of their brain clutter, calendar, to-do list, inbox, interruptions and anything blocking productivity. She is a productivity coach, speaker, Certified Professional Organizer®, author of four books and partner at Productivity Uncorked, LLC, a coaching firm that specializes in helping financial advisors take control of their practice and uncork their referrals. Email Patty or connect with her on LinkedIn.
Almost 100% of the financial advisors that I coach have complete control over their day. In other words, nobody tells them what to do or where to be at any given time. It’s up to them to choose how they want to plan their day. That last sentence provides a clear definition of freedom! If you are in complete control of your day but feel like it gets completely out of control quickly and often, then it’s time to buckle down and make some much-needed changes.
As the guardian of your own time, it’s important to think smart and schedule your time with intention.
–Patty Kreamer, CPO®
As the guardian of your own time, it’s important to think smart and schedule your time with intention. The raw truth is that if you don’t control your time, someone else will. It happens every day. Your calendar is a primary tool for managing your time. But before you can learn how to leverage your calendar more productively, let me introduce you to your Ideal Week.
Your Ideal Week is designed based on the answer to this question: If you had 100% control of your time when you woke up every Monday morning, what would your Ideal Week look like?
- Define your ideal week
- Schedule and block time on your terms
- Don’t forget about scheduling time for you
When you know what your Ideal Week looks and feels like, it becomes something to strive for each week. Of course, I'm realistic and understand that you may never fully live your ‘ideal’ week because of outside influences (hey, life happens), but the goal is to get a lot closer to that ideal week than you are right now. Having that vision of what you want is the key.
The Ideal Week is all about time blocking on your terms and will help you gain control of your calendar and make better choices because you've decided ahead of time what you like to do and when.
Start by making a list of your buckets. Buckets are basically your job description. This might include (but not limited to):
- Client meetings
- Prospect meetings
- Business development
- Professional development
- Client services
- Financial planning
- COI development
Next, decide what percentage of your week should be spent on each bucket. Each day is equal to 20% of your time so do the bucket calculations and enter them into your Ideal Week.
Here are some ideas:
- I only see clients on Tuesdays and Thursdays. (40%)
- I do admin and clients services on Monday mornings. (10%)
- I attend my networking group on Wednesday mornings. (10%)
- I call or meet prospects and COIs on Wednesday afternoons. (10%)
- I do my financial planning work on Monday afternoons and Friday mornings. (20%)
- I clean up admin work and prep for next week on Friday afternoons. (10%)
As you design your Ideal Week, fill in the timeslots as you'd like and be sure to align with your rhythm and lifestyle.
Don't forget to include activity that you want to do regularly, including self-care.
- I leave work at 5 pm Monday-Friday.
- I take lunch from 12:00-1:00 pm every day.
- I work out from 6:30-7:00 am.
- I take my kids to school every morning at 8:00 am.
- I go to yoga Tuesday and Thursday at 6:30 pm.
The bottom line: Take time NOW to create your Ideal Week and include what YOU want to do and leave out what you don't. Sounds simple because it is…and it works.