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Hey you all. If you have listened to this podcast for any amount of time, you know that I’m a big fan of optimizing your schedule and creating big breaks to work on the business instead of in the business. Today, I am revisiting some of these ideas in hopes of motivating you to take a little time and block off your schedule over the next several months, [00:01:00] or at least think about blocking off your schedule over the next several months.
Let’s get into it.
All right. This will be a short and sweet episode because you have heard this content before. This is just one of those episodes where I am reinforcing an idea that is very important to me.
We all know that taking breaks and getting into a “deep workspace” is important. If you don’t know what deep work is, stay tuned, there will be a podcast specifically on deep work in the coming weeks. Deep work is uninterrupted time when you can work deeply on projects that matter instead of staying in on the hamster wheel and [00:02:00] doing things that don’t have a huge impact on anyone.
This gets at the phrase working on the business versus working in the business, which has been around for a long time, but there remains a huge industry, including my own podcast and coaching around helping business owners get away from the daily grind. So that’s what this is about.
The problem here is business owners too often get wrapped up in the day-to-day issues and never take the time to step away from the business to strategize, take care of big projects, vision for the business, et cetera. We get caught up putting out fires and end up with no time to install that fireproof insulation that we know we need.
Some research suggests that business owners are only spending 32% of the day on the business, though I think this is pretty high compared to a lot of psychologists, given that many of us are still doing quite a [00:03:00] bit of clinical work.
So the answer to this, the one answer, I’m just kidding. There are so many facets to this problem and so many solutions depending on how you approach it. I’m just going to tackle one idea here. The idea is that business owners often don’t take the time to be deliberate about how they’re spending their time either daily, weekly, monthly, or annually.
So as a quick experiment, as we get into this, I’d like you to take a look at your calendar right now. If you’re driving or you’re in a place where you can’t look at your calendar, I want you to think about your calendar. You probably have a pretty good idea of what your calendar looks like and how you spend your days.
I want you to look at it, do you have time specifically blocked each week to work on your business? On the business [00:04:00] means you are doing those big-picture meaningful tasks that move your business forward, leading your business, growing your business. So contrast that with working in the business, which is tackling these reports, emails, phone calls, that kind of stuff. So do you have any time blocked out each week to work on the business?
The next step, do you have at least one week blocked off over the course of the next year, five full business days? Do you have any targeted getaways, any retreats planned? I am guessing that the answers to all of these is no. If the answer to some of them is yes, that’s fantastic. Maybe you’ve been listening to the podcast or other [00:05:00] folks in the field who advocate this approach. That’s great if you do have some time. If not, that’s also okay because you’re not alone.
I talk about this so often in my consulting. It’s hard to make this time. We get caught up on the hamster wheel and we have a hard time setting aside the time. Often people say, I don’t even have the time to set aside the time. So if that sounds familiar, I get it.
The idea here is to get real and do something about it. So if you’re able, I want you to take out your calendar. If you’re walking, if you’re exercising, basically anything but driving, take one minute, go sit down, and grab your calendar. If you can’t do that, just think about it and set a reminder on your phone. I’ll pause for just a moment to allow you [00:06:00] to tell Siri to remind you next time you get to the office to pull out your calendar.
Okay. So we got our calendar. First, breathe. Give yourself some compassion. You are working hard in your business and you are doing the best that you can. Entrepreneurship is hard and you are amazing. Trust me.
Now that you’ve taken a breath and patted yourself on the back, let’s think for a second, assessing your life and being realistic. What is the most reasonable option for a business retreat? Is it one day? Is it a week? Are you going out of town? Are you going to stay at home? Could you do a hotel, a day spa, or maybe just go to the library or a coffee [00:07:00] shop in your home? Whatever it might be, just figure out what could work in your life right now. This is a case of done being better than perfect. We want to find the easiest, quickest way to get you a little retreat time to work on your business.
Let’s take a break to hear from our featured partner.
Conduct a broad-based assessment of personality and psychopathology with the gold standard Personality Assessment Inventory, or PAI. 22 non-overlapping scales cover a full range of clinical constructs, so you’ll get the information you need to make a diagnosis and formulate a treatment plan. Plus, for your clients who speak Spanish, the new PAI Spanish revised translation retains semantic equivalence while updating the language to be clearer and more inclusive. Learn more at parinc.com\pai.[00:08:00]All right, let’s get back to the podcast.
Flip ahead on your calendar whenever is realistic and block it off. Just block it off. Put it in right now. And then you’re going to go and schedule an out-of-office reply for that time. So put that out of the office on your email. You can schedule it ahead of time. That’s it. That’s all we got.
You did it. How are you feeling? Excited, relieved, hopeful, nervous? All those things make sense. The important thing here isn’t the details of the time away or even scheduling the time away. If nothing else, it’s just introducing the idea of taking just a few minutes once or twice a year to actually [00:09:00] plan how to take more time. We get so caught up in the day-to-day. It creates this illusion that we just don’t even have the time to plan a retreat. But as you saw right now, it only takes a couple of minutes now.
I know reality, you’re going to have to go talk to your partner, talk to your family, think about your kids, think about a parent that you might have to take care of, any number of things, right? Tell your employees. Of course, you’re going to have to do those things. It will take a little bit more time, but looking at your calendar and setting aside the time is the most crucial thing. And you did it.
Now, if you’re in the mood for a retreat with other practice owners that can be both rejuvenating and exhilarating, you might want to create a loose bookmark in [00:10:00] summer 2023 for a Testing Psychologist event. There’ll be more info on that to come in the coming months. So stay tuned.
All right, y’all. Thank you so much for tuning into this episode. Always grateful to have you here. I hope that you take away some information that you can implement in your practice and your life. Any resources that we mentioned during the episode will be listed in the show notes. So make sure to check those out.
If you like what you hear on the podcast, I would be so grateful if you left a review on iTunes or Spotify or wherever you listen to your podcasts.
And if you’re a practice owner or aspiring practice owner, I’d invite you to check out The Testing Psychologist Mastermind Groups. I have mastermind groups at every stage of practice development, beginner, intermediate, and advanced. We have homework, we have accountability, we have support, we have resources. These groups are amazing. We do a lot of work and a lot of [00:11:00] connecting. If that sounds interesting to you, you can check out the details at thetestingpsychologist.com/consulting. You can sign up for a pre-group phone call and we will chat and figure out if a group could be a good fit for you. Thanks so much.
The information contained in this podcast and on The Testing Psychologist website is intended for informational and educational purposes only. Nothing in this podcast or on the website is intended to be a substitute for professional, psychological, psychiatric, or medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.
Please note that no doctor-patient relationship is formed here, and similarly, [00:12:00] no supervisory or consultative relationship is formed between the host or guests of this podcast and listeners of this podcast. If you need the qualified advice of any mental health practitioner or medical provider, please seek one in your area. Similarly, if you need supervision on clinical matters, please find a supervisor with expertise that fits your needs.