How to set boundaries
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Y’all, I’m so excited that I had the chance to chat with one of my internet friends, Shanna Hocking! Thanks to the miracle of Instagram, we’ve been connected for awhile and I’ve just been astounded by her philosophies and the way she structures life and business.
With 20 years of experience as a fundraiser and team leader, Shanna is no stranger to the ups and downs of successfully leading a team. When the pandemic hit and everyone went into remote work, Shanna, like so many of us, took some time to reflect on her position in life and work.
She realized that each of us are so much more than a career — which led her to taking a leave of absence in January of 2022. Now, she facilitates retreats, workshops, and a myriad of other leadership activities for companies across the country. The thing she loves most about solving problems for these businesses?
“I get to learn every day!”
So speaking of learning, what can we learned from Shanna’s brilliance?
Doing life, work, and everything in between
Throughout her life, Shanna tried so many different methods to balance work, life, and family. And the method that’s worked best for her has been to use her calendar as a to-do list.
This way, her time is already blocked from the moment her day starts. But it also allows her to focus in on her “best and highest” use of time. Using the Prioritization Matrix, she clarifies her tasks in order of importance and blocks them into her calendar.
The Prioritization Matrix
The Prioritization Matrix is a simple tool that allows anyone to rank projects and tasks in order of urgency and importance. Using a chart, you create a matrix. On one side are the columns “do now” and “do later.” On the adjoining side, you have rows labeled “crucial” and “not crucial.”
Then, based on this matrix, you can time-block your schedule to finish the crucial + do now tasks first. I absolutely love this! A to-do list without time blocks is just a wishlist, and having the finite amount of time in a day or week to make the puzzle pieces fit ensures that you get it done!
Outsource everything you can
In addition, Shanna outsources everything she can. Whether it’s allowing her husband to be the primary parent in order to keep working or having a household manager to organize her home life, Shanna has no problem getting help in the areas that simply aren’t her best and highest use of time.
Here’s the thing: Shanna has become an expert in giving up the idea of what she “should” be doing. If cleaning her home means that she will have to give up time with her son, she’s going to outsource that cleaning, regardless of whether society says she “should” clean in order to be a good mom.
Whatever your best and highest use of time is, never let anyone else determine what those priorities are. Because when we’re worried about what we “should” do, we only end up feeling guilty, which completely detracts from our ability to be present.
The 15-minute trick
Way too often, we tell ourselves we need a lot more time to complete tasks than we actually do. Say you think you need 2 hours to do something… well, the problem is that it’s extremely rare for any of us to have a 2 hour block of time to get that task done if it’s not red flag level urgent.
But I bet you have some 15 minute increments, right? So that big task you want to do can be broken up into 15 minute chunks. Make proactive choices to ensure that your time is always being used to its best and highest potential. If you have 15 minutes and you can either answer an email or work towards a bigger goal… it’s likely you should work toward the bigger goal, but our instinct will always tell us to answer the email!
It’s up to you to practice discernment.
Permission to just be
The biggest change Shanna has found to her ability to focus in and get things done is time to “just be.” This is the idea that, instead of feeling like you NEED to do something, you can simply let things unfold and go with the flow.
Yes, I know, this is NOT easy. But when you do give yourself time to be present and content without dictating that you need to achieve a goal in that time, your brain will be able to focus so much more easily in the time you do need to be goal-oriented. Which will make you so much more productive in the long run!
One Bold Move A Day
What is the One Bold Move A Day philosophy? It’s a roadmap to help women make meaningful actions, advance their career, develop as a leader, and grow as a person through a single, measurable act each day — a bold move.
In fact, Shanna even has a book coming out soon all about this philosophy! You can find her book here.
A bold move is something you define for yourself and helps you grow and move forward. It’s going to look different for every woman and every personality. Maybe it’s asking for your correct coffee order. Maybe it’s moving all the way across the country. Or maybe it’s speaking up for yourself in a meeting.
Whatever your bold move is, there’s no wrong or right answer. This is all about defining where you are and where you want to be in life, and then taking one action per day to get there.
The progress mindset
The door to making your bold move isn’t always going to be wide open for you. Normally, it’s going to be almost closed. You don’t need to walk through an open door or push it open to be bold.
Celebrate the little moves along the way. Commit to yourself and define your bold move… and then do it.
Things will probably go awry as you’re making your bold moves. But a lot of us can get lost in what’s going wrong or what our next steps are, and forget to celebrate our progress. Shanna believes progress is more important than productivity — and if you celebrate your progress FIRST, you’ll be so much more productive in the long run.
Celebration doesn’t have to be complex. Sometimes it can be as simple as taking a moment to recognize your hard work.
Shanna even has an “Atta Girl” folder that she fills with her accolades and accomplishments. And on her hardest days, Shanna opens that folder up and reads through everything she’s already done in life to remind her of how much she’s already served the world.
If you want to continue the conversation and make bold moves with Shanna’s help, you can order her brand new book here!
See you next week!
In this episode, we talk about:
- Shanna’s One Bold Move A Day philosophy
- How to get out of hyper-productivity mode
- Why permission to just “be” is so important
- How to adapt a progress mindset
Resources Mentioned in this Episode
- All Problem, No Solution: Why Complaining Isn’t Worth Your Time Featuring Lori Oberbroeckling
- Priorities Vs Productivity: Choosing What’s Most Important
- Doing It All Is Not The Answer And What To Do Instead With Kaitlin Fontenot
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