There are always distractions for a parentpreneur. It took many tries, fails, and hours of reflection to find my groove and master my focus. It’s a journey.

So how do I focus as a parentpreneur?

As a business owner, who also works from home with a kid virtually attending school, it’s a bit of an art to navigate the demands of the day and honour the deadlines and time blocks on my calendar. 

How I Mastered My Focus 

What I found most helpful was reviewing my plan for the week on Fridays before the weekend starts. This lets me know what I need to do on the weekend to stay on track the following week. 

I review each day. I put all my commitments in my calendar so I can quickly review how it went.

  • Did I underestimate how long I needed to do the work?
  • Did I complete the work quicker than expected?
  • What was unexpected? 

Observing how things went each day helped me decide what to do differently and where I needed some flexibility. 

Taking a Break Increases Focus 

One of the benefits of running my own business is I can create breaks that match my son’s school breaks. This was the game-changer move: it reduced the number of interruptions that would happen in a day. He was much calmer knowing there were times he could count on seeing me. 

Once that part was figured out, I figured out me. I observed my decisions throughout the day and then reflected on them when planning the next day.

On the days when a task was taking too long, I would consider, “Did I need to keep going? Was I distracting myself with a task to avoid doing something that wasn’t very fun?”

Sometimes, staying focused required my taking a break. I like having flex time in my day so that I can go with the flow of my energy, doing “like tasks” at the same time so I can stay in my groove. 

I also love to fully unplug for 24 hours each weekend—it might not be the full day on Saturday or Sunday. Being a management consultant that works with global clients, sometimes requires a bit of work on the weekends. When I unplug for 24 hours, I’m more creative, strategic, and energized for the week ahead. There is a power in pausing

The Accidental Energy Hack

I am an early riser, and I noticed that at 3 p.m. I would sometimes run out of steam. I accidentally discovered one day how an afternoon, half-an-hour long mediation increased my energy, focus, and productivity for an additional three to four hours. I was meditating in the mornings for 5–10 minutes, thinking that was the best time. However, when I began a 21-day meditation experience, I discovered that I preferred meditating in the afternoon, it’s actually when I need it most. 

How to Focus as a Parentpreneur

The key is to be observant.  

“We are always available, but also always distractable.”  – Matt Richtel

The next time you’re feeling a lack of focus, consider time-blocking your scheduling and observing what works and doesn’t work for you. 

To get you started here are the 5 things I do to set my week up for success:

  1. Plan for distractions.
  2. Pick 2–3 times a day to check emails.
  3. Schedule social media time.
  4. Decide what activities are most important to you.
  5. Observe how often you switch context; try to group similar activities.

Why is being observant of your time so important as a Parentpreneur?  

When you analyze your time, it provides you with the insight to design your best life.

No one can make you do something; it’s up to you.

Accept the plans in your schedule. 

When you own your business, you can choose how you want to spend your time. If you aren’t spending your time the way you’d like, then it may be something worth exploring.

Made some New Year’s Resolutions? I wish I believed in them. To me, they are a source of guilt. The statistics indicate halfway through the year, only 46% of people are still working towards their New Year’s Resolution. What if we consider New Year’s resolutions as goal setting?

I was reminded of this when our family watched the new Peanuts special, For Auld Lang Syne, this weekend. Charlie Brown was trying to get one of his many resolutions done before the New Year happened. Concerned it wouldn’t happen, he went to Lucy for some advice. She discovers that his New Year’s Resolution list had things that were too hard to do. She helped him simplify his goals and he managed to get one done just in time. 

I see a New Year’s Resolution as an intention, which is a great start. That’s where New Year’s Resolutions come in handy—they get us thinking about the possibilities. Goal-setting increases the chances of success. 

I love goal-setting; it’s when my dreams become reality. Each quarter I do goal-setting, so I don’t get too fussed about New Year’s Resolutions. Three months allows growth.

A lot can happen in a year; many things are beyond our control. So, I set intentions for the year and get very specific about my goals for the next ninety days. 

I like to reflect on the past year, celebrate the wins, and ponder the upcoming year. Then, I pick a theme for the year. 

Goal Setting

When I set goals there are four key areas:

  • Personal – What am I going to learn or explore?
  • Family – What are we going to work towards as a family?
  • Business – How will we achieve our company vision?
  • Community – What is most important for serving the communities of which I am a part? 

Whether you call it a New Year’s Resolution or a goal the way to be successful is the same. 

Consider these five questions when choosing your next goal or resolution:

  1. Why do you want to do this goal? Uncover the motivation and you’ll discover the reward you’re after when you accomplish your goal. The more specific you are the better.
  2. How will you know you are successful? What is the outcome you’d like to see? This will keep you going on the tough days. 
  3. What is the simplest way to achieve your goal? Pick one goal at a time and break it down into three to five steps. 
  4. By what date do you want to complete your goal? Does it need a year to be done? Or are you changing behaviour that will them become a lifestyle change?
  5. Who can help you stay accountable? When you share your goals with another person your chances of completion increase.  

Once you set your goals, here are three tips to maintain them: 

1. Pick an accountability buddy. I have accountability partners with my mentors, coaches, and masterminds. This is how I achieve my goals faster than I expected.

  • Surround yourself with others who inspire you to be better, to keep at it, to face your fears, to encourage you to keep going.  When you go off track, first be kind in your thoughts, and then reflect on why that happened. 

2. Create time blocks on your calendar. Create space and time to work towards your goal.

  • Put everything in your calendar—the work stuff, the rituals, the fun time, the family time, business goals, and your time to work on your goals. If you don’t plan time to do it, it’s not going to happen. 

3. Review your routines and adapt them. Routines need to suit where you are going and who you want to become.

  • When you meet resistance, it may be an opportunity to learn something new or let the routine go if it isn’t serving you anymore. 

Expect some hiccups along the way. 

“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein

Enjoy trying something new—you may surprise yourself with your accomplishments. Even better if you have some fun along the way too!