We missed hosting our local WeddingPro Experience so much that we decided to bring you all the inspiration and education you love to you at home. Since we’ve turned to technology now more than ever, what better way to celebrate and learn from our pro community than with our own WeddingPro Experience Online?
We learned so much from our amazing industry experts. We know that #loveisnotcanceled and that couples are excited to celebrate in the future, so it’s key to make sure your business is prepared.
Our final keynote session of the week was with Terrica of Cocktails & Details on the art of balance and building your brand while living your life. Here are the top takeaways:
Takeaway: Organize Your Workflow to Avoid Burnout
First, let’s talk about burnout. It can come in many forms. Maybe you’re no longer excited about work or clients. Or maybe you start to make errors like forgetting to add, change or do something you promised you would. Sound familiar? You might be experiencing burnout— and don’t worry, it happens to all of us.
Imagine this scenario: If Oprah tweeted about you, would your business be able to handle the flood of new clients you’d get, or would you fail at the prospect of this potential success? Or if you had to step away from your business to plan Beyonce’s Grammy party and left another person in charge with a plan, would they be able to properly run your business for you?
What That Looks Like: Setting up a workflow and process is key to business success. You can ask the reliable people around you to take over when you need a break. Furthermore, you can’t grow if you don’t have a proper blueprint in place. “I have been through so much, but my workflow and systems have allowed my staff and friends to pick up work when I’m burnt out,” says Terrica.
Don’t forget, there’s a reason for the directive to put your mask on first before helping anyone else on airplanes. You’re unable to help anyone around you until you take care of yourself.
Takeaway: Manage Your Hours
We’ve all complained about needing more hours in the day to get things done. You may have the same 24 hours that Beyonce does, but she has an entire team to help. “You don’t need more hours— you just need to manage your hours better,” says Terrica. The key word here is your hours. There’s a difference between being busy and being productive, so take charge of the time you have in your day.
What That Looks Like: Plan your day the night before. This way, you’ll do a brain dump of all your tasks and can hit the ground running the next morning. Get up early— you’ll be well-rested, have more energy and a blueprint to start your day. Although most of us are still working from home, Terrica suggests putting your shoes on! “They make you feel like you’re going somewhere and have purpose,” she recommends.
Takeaway: Find the Best Productivity Technique for You
Ditch the to-do list and find a productivity routine that works for you. This is the best way to prevent stressing yourself out. One of Terrica’s favorite techniques is the Pomodoro technique. You set a task and work on it for 25 minutes, followed by a five minute break. After you have done that four times, you get to take a 25-minute break— “This helps you perfectly hone in on what is important at that time and break down tasks.”.
Another one is the GTD method – Getting Things Done. First, brain dump everything you need to that day. Then, find actionable steps for these tasks. For instance, if Terrica is building a style guide, she’ll break down the steps needed to complete it: researching images, gathering sketches, finding palettes and linens. Writing out tasks will help keep you focused and forego the need to remember everything you have to get done. Checking them off one by one will feel even better!
The final technique is based on a famous quote by Mark Twain, “If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning.” From this came the Eat the Frog method. Using this technique, you’ll do the worst, hardest or biggest task first to get it out of the way. You’ll feel far more accomplished and like everything else is a breeze.
Takeaway: Establish Boundaries
“The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to just about everything,” says Terrica. As an exercise, allow yourself a set number of “yeses” per week— you’ll be much more careful about where you spend your time, energy and attention. Remember that boundaries are like contracts: they are meant to protect both parties.
What That Looks Like: You can start implementing boundaries by setting office hours. Terrica’s phones turn off after 6 p.m.. If she does answer an email after hours, she uses a scheduling app to send it out the next day. Another way to set boundaries with couples is to set up clear communication channels. Terrica prefers her clients not having the ability to text her at all hours, and instead she schedules time to chat with each of them. This grants her more privacy and free time.
Another important boundary is to make sure you know when to charge for your time and effort and avoid doing work for free. Invoice clients and line-item the costs. They need to know that there is a cost and value for everything you provide.
Lastly, it’s so tempting to take care of home-related tasks while working, like doing the laundry when it’s a few feet away. However, Terrica recommends that you avoid doing so and to keep yourself on track with the tasks at hand. Respect your own boundaries as well as the ones you set for others.
Takeaway: Protect Your Energy
When buying a car, you find out how much mileage it has. Similarly, consider how many miles your business is putting on your life, relationships, body and mental health. Learn how to protect your energy. This is crucial for all pros who work in this personal business.
What That Looks Like: Try to recognize red flags early on and stop avoiding them. “Stop working with vendors and clients that don’t feed you or fulfill your vision,” urges Terrica. By choosing to continue working with people you don’t mesh with, you’re making it harder on yourself and your mileage. Don’t pay for someone else’s event with your health, well-being or relationships.
Stop spreading yourself thin— you’ll dilute your brand and yourself. You won’t make yourself better or stronger. More likely, something else is bound to suffer and will no longer have the effect it once did. “You are not required to set yourself on fire for others,” says Terrica. Know your limits and set them early on.
Delegate tasks so you can work on the business and not necessarily in the business. If you don’t have an assistant on your staff, you can use a system like Fancy Hands to hire a personal assistant to work on a specific task.
Takeaway: Take Care of Yourself
Self-care is so important to personal and professional well-being. It’s not always about bubble baths, chocolates and hot tea. It’s also about examining your bad habits and healing from past pain.
Remember: everyone’s self-care is different! Set up a method for yourself to work and exist while thriving. Terrica recommends intentionally scheduling yourself for self-care. If you dedicate the time in your calendar, you’re less likely to skip it in favor of working.
What That Looks Like: As Donna Meagle says, treat yourself! Find a hobby or take mental escapes. Some of Terrica’s favorites are meditation, reading and binging shows. Getting outside for some Vitamin D seems simple, but can be so helpful after spending hours in front of a screen. Finally, take a vacation to enjoy all of the life you have.
For more from Terrica, use code ProLove2020 to watch the full presentation. Follow along for more takeaways from our WeddingPro Experience Online!
Photo Credit: KMD Photo & Film