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Early Rising for more productivity

The 5 AM Club: The health benefits of rising early


The quietude that dawn brings is not just a physical phenomenon but a metaphorical representation of the mental clarity and tranquility that can be achieved by joining the 5 AM Club.

Waking up super early, like at 5 AM, is more than just avoiding the snooze button. It’s about getting that quiet, uninterrupted time in the morning when you can think clearly and feel calm. This idea is from a book called “The 5 AM Club” by Robin Sharma. He suggests that starting your day early with some exercise and a bit of thinking can improve your sleep quality and make your whole day better.

Morning Activities

I read the 5AM club book about a year ago, and was inspired to try based on the recommendations of the Author, Robin Sharma. Robin Sharma says to divide the first hour into three parts: moving (like a morning walk), thinking, and learning. But doing this can be tough with a busy life, family, and personal stuff. Sometimes, the warm bed wins, and you end up hitting snooze for some extra time asleep.So let’s talk about it. Why the 5AM club is a thing, how it works for some people, and how other people can learn from the benefits of it, but make it work for their own chaotic lifestyle

While this is all well and good in a book, the actualities of it happening? Well, in my life, any downtime is usually spent decompressing, walking the dog or sleeping.

There is so much going on in daily life with a family, kids, and your own brain on a roller coaster that getting up early feels like it’s a crapshoot. You can have ALL the intention in the world, but when that alarm goes off and you are exhausted. Getting out of bed is super-fecking-hard.

Daily chaos of getting kids ready

The benefits of a morning routine

Okay, so you know I like productivity, I like the attempt at living your life with some intention and not just letting the winds of luck or privilege or “that’s what it’s always been” choose my path. The early morning hours tend to be seen as the most productive time of day because you are fresh from quality sleep and there are minimum interruptions.

Being productive really means using your energy wisely, so that when you are rested, motivated and energized, you do the things that take the most mental effort, to be able to move that much closer to your goals. You could also call this “peak performance”

What are the health benefits of rising early?


Rising early has numerous health benefits (duh!). It boosts productivity, enhances mental well-being, and allows time for exercise and a nutritious breakfast. Early risers tend to have better sleep quality and improved focus throughout the day, leading to an overall healthier lifestyle.

Peak performance is a concept that refers to achieving the highest level of productivity and efficiency in your work. It’s about being at your best, consistently. A morning routine can play a crucial role in reaching this state.

As a mom, a wife, an entrepreneur… this “peak” performance feels like something that some childless 20-something “bro” came up with.

As much as it irks me, it’s kind of right. In order for us to be able to be our best for our company, our family, our friends, taking care of ourselves should be our number one priority.

The point of the morning routine is to start your day with a clear mind, focused vision and healthy outlook. Being able to start your day slowly, doing things that you personally enjoy and fill your soul, whether that be meditation, writing, or prayer can fill you with a sense of calm and patience.

Having a morning routine can do wonders. It helps you tackle your day and tasks with energy and enthusiasm.

Basically it sets you up to succeed in whatever it is that you want to do for that day… and who doesn’t want that?!

Oprah Winfrey swears by her morning routine. She starts her day with meditation, followed by a workout, and then spends time planning her day. This routine helps her stay focused, energized, and productive throughout the day.

Other well-known entrepreneurs and businesswomen, Richard Branson and Michelle Obama take time every morning to meticulously plan their day including spending time with family and alone time to reflect.

A well-planned day is a day with room for everything that actually matters.

It’s not just about getting more done. It’s about spending time on things that make you feel good and are good for you. Starting your day with physical activity, like a short walk, is great for your body and can help avoid health issues like obesity and high blood pressure. Spending some time thinking or learning can help you feel more alert and ready for the day.

Morning Routines and Mental Health


Starting your day early can also have significant benefits for your mental health. Morning is a time of quiet and calm, perfect for activities that nourish your mind and soul that you wouldn’t have time or bandwidth to do otherwise.

Whether it’s meditation, yoga, reading, or simply enjoying a cup of tea in silence, these activities can help reduce stress, improve focus, and boost your mood.

One of my favorite morning activities is going on a 2-mile walk with my dog. Even just the act of going outside, breathing the cool air, and walking the neighborhood is enough for me to feel inspired and ready to take on the day.

For women entrepreneurs with ADHD, these benefits can be even more pronounced. ADHD can make it challenging to focus and stay organized. A morning routine can provide the structure and framework to boost dopamine, helping to manage these symptoms and improve overall mental health.

Health of morning routine and focus

Does it have to be in the morning?


This is the question that I find myself asking whenever I read books like the 5AM club.

Do you need to set your alarm clock super-early to have these types of morning routines?

Choosing to wake up early for the 5 AM Club means changing your sleep habits. It’s hard to go from your usual routine to something new, especially if it means getting less sleep at first. You have to fight the temptation to stay in bed. It’s about saying no to sleep inertia (that groggy feeling when you wake up) and using your morning for a head start on your day.

Even though waking up at 5 AM is great for some people, it’s okay to tweak it to better fit your life. Maybe you need a bit more sleep or prefer different morning activities. It’s all about finding what’s best for you and your sleep schedule preference.

The short answer is no. You don’t NEED to get up before everyone else, but you should find time sometime in the morning to center yourself, get your blood pumping through morning exercise and prepare for the day.

Being reactionary is not only unproductive, it is also stressful and causes anxiety when you flip from one thing to the other all day.

Starting your day with a morning routine, WHENEVER that time is, should help you maintain control of everything for the rest of the day.

It helps with mental clarity, consistency, and most of all, better time management.

The reason why it’s so effective to get up and start the day this way, is because you won’t be interrupted by small children, husbands asking questions, friends calling to ask you to bring their kid to school, clients with emergencies to clear up…. you get the point.

I personally try to get up by 5:45 to get an hour of my own morning routine, to wash my face, drink my water, journal my hopes and fears and plan the details of my day… all before the kids get up at 6:45. I think I would be lost without it.

Crafting a Productive Morning OR Bedtime Routine


So what makes a morning or bedtime routine perfect for crafting a productive day?

It’s basically a spa treatment for your brain. Involve a little movement, a little deep thinking, and a bit of forward thinking.

In short, it doesn’t have to be complicated.

Robin Sharma recommends doing 3, 20-minute segments of movement, reflection and growth.

Here’s a simple step-by-step guide:

  1. When you get up, drink a cup of water to hydrate and help your kidneys clean out your insides.
  2. Include some form of exercise, even if it’s just a short walk.
  3. Add a mindfulness activity, like meditation or journaling.
  4. Identify your most important tasks for the day.
  5. Plan a healthy breakfast that will give you energy.
  6. Stick to your routine consistently.

Here’s my self-care routine:

  1. Get up and drink water and start the coffeemaker
  2. Go to restroom, wash face, brush teeth, put on sweats or something comphy that’s not my PJ’s
  3. Take my freshly made coffee downstairs to my office
  4. Journal about my health, mood, and things I’m grateful for
  5. Review my scheduled appointments for the day and the week and plan my day around those appointments so I’m prepared
  6. Wake up the kids and get them ready for school
  7. Take the dog for a walk
  8. Make a quick breakfast (oat bran pancakes and yogurt or an egg usually and more water)
  9. Shower
  10. Do my morning work activities which include checking metrics, replying to high-priority emails and client work.

For women entrepreneurs with ADHD, you too can have morning routine success


It can be helpful to include strategies that specifically address ADHD symptoms.

Using a visual planner, or digital tool that is easily accessible to help you prepare for the day. I have found that even though I have events of the day on my calendar, writing them out helps solidify them in my mind and make me less likely to be late to a meeting or accidentally skip.

Taking the time to meditate or pray in the morning, to clear your mind of obtrusive thoughts is also a GREAT exercise for those of us that have too many thoughts all the time. Even if it feels impossible, just the practice of it will help give you more control over time.

Prepare the night before. Leave a cup of water out by the fridge for your first drink. Make sure the coffeemaker is set up to go so all you have to do is turn on the switch (or better yet, set the auto-timer). Make sure your computer has all windows closed at the end of the night so you won’t be distracted on what you were working on before bed.

These are just a few tips that I have found works for those with ADHD, but again, everyone is different, you will need to find what works for you.

Successful Women Entrepreneurs with ADHD


There are many successful women entrepreneurs with ADHD who have harnessed the power of a morning routine. Take the example of Karina, a tech entrepreneur. She starts her day with a yoga session, followed by a healthy breakfast and a planning session. This routine helps her stay focused and productive throughout the day.

Or consider Lisa, a fashion entrepreneur with ADHD. She wakes up early to meditate and plan her day, then goes for a run before starting work. Her morning routine is a crucial part of her success.

I have also heard of other ADHD superstars who can’t STAND a morning routine. They like to roll out of bed at 9AM and hit the ground running. They are night owls, who’s energy peaks in the evening. They do have a nighttime routine where they make sure everything they need in the morning or have their workday planned the night before.

In the end, it doesn’t matter WHEN you do it, just that you do it.

For some who’s dopamine is best in the morning, using the self-control to get up early and take time for yourself is best. Others, they get a flood of dopamine in the evening. Whenever it is, grab hold of it and make it your own!

Collage of women doing morning routines

How to become an early riser to take advantage of this?


While the benefits of early rising are clear, making the transition is often met with hurdles.

Much like any sort of habit in life, consistency is key!

Your body gets use to your sleep/wake cycle that you normally follow. This is otherwise known as your body clock. This is why jetlag exists. When suddenly you want to walk around, when your body feels like it should be in a deep sleep, it will drag you down and make you feel as though you are walking in mud and just want to curl up in a ball and sleep.

So don’t expect to get up at 5 AM some day and feel happy about it. 🙂

It’s better to take it gradually and then be consistent about it.

If you want to start waking up earlier, do it bit by bit. Set your alarm just 15 minutes earlier and see how it goes. Keep to this new schedule every day, even on weekends, so your body gets used to the new sleep cycle. This can help improve your sleep quality and make waking up early feel more natural.

Once you are getting up at a time that feels good and allows you to fit in your morning routine… then make it consistent.

This means don’t sleep in on the weekends. A consistent sleep schedule, even on weekends, to reinforce your body’s sleep-wake cycle.

Yep, I said it, you may hate me for it, but you ASKED!

Keeping this consistent waking time even when you DON’T need to be up that early will not only make it easier to get up at that time but also make you more productive on the weekends. 😉

Granted, in actuality, I don’t get up that early on Saturdays, because I like to stay up with the hubster and watch a show on TV on Friday nights. But I know that it’s going to make it harder for me to get up early on Monday, but that’s a hardship I’m willing to face to be able to spend time with my husband.

Now you know the facts 🙂

I like to look at it in the words of Buddah:

Each morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters most. – Buddha

Following a morning, mid-day, or evening routine really just allows us to live our life with intention and meaning. So many of us just kind of float through life following someone else’s plan for us or reacting to other people’s needs. We only get one of these things (that we REALLY know of) called life, and I personally choose to live it with intention.

This means taking the time to a) Understand what my values are B) create a schedule and activities that support those values and C) being consistent about revisiting and staying the course.

Especially for those with ADHD, a routine and systems are so important for us to have the structure required to thrive. A morning routine is a great start to establish that structure had habits regardless of the stress and chaos the rest of the day brings. You are in charge, you make the plans.



What is the 5AM Club and why does it matter?

The 5AM Club is a concept popularized by Robin Sharma through his book “The 5 AM Club: Own Your Morning. Elevate Your Life.” It revolves around the idea of waking up at 5 AM every day to dedicate the first hour of your day, which Sharma calls the “Victory Hour,” to personal development activities. This could include exercise, meditation, reading, or planning your day. The significance of the 5AM Club lies in its emphasis on using the early morning hours to focus on self-improvement before the demands of the day take over, thereby setting a positive tone for the rest of the day.

What are the benefits of waking up early?


Waking up early has several benefits that contribute to both personal and professional growth:

  • Increased Productivity: The quiet of the early morning is often considered the best time for deep, uninterrupted work. There’s less noise, fewer distractions, and it’s easier to focus on tasks.
  • Enhanced Mental Health: Early risers often report having a more optimistic outlook on life and lower levels of stress, as the morning routines help in setting a positive tone for the day.
  • Better Physical Health: Utilizing the morning for exercise can boost your energy levels for the day, improve your physical health, and help in establishing a regular fitness routine.
  • Improved Quality of Sleep: Following a routine of waking up early usually leads to going to bed earlier, which can improve the quality of sleep over time.
  • More Time for Personal Development: The morning provides a great opportunity for self-improvement activities like reading, meditating, or planning, which might be harder to fit into a busy day.

How can you craft your own 5AM Club?


To create your own 5AM Club, consider the following steps:

  1. Gradual Adjustment: If you’re not a natural early riser, gradually set your alarm earlier by 15 minutes every few days until you reach your 5 AM goal.
  2. Evening Routine: Establish a calming evening routine that supports good sleep, such as limiting screen time, reading, or meditating before bed.
  3. Purposeful Mornings: Plan your early mornings with activities that you find fulfilling and energizing. This could be exercise, reading, meditation, or planning your day.
  4. Consistency: Stick to your 5 AM wakeup time even on weekends to reinforce your body’s internal clock.
  5. Accountability: Share your goal with a friend or join a community of early risers for support and motivation.

Can you wake up early, or does another time of day make more sense?


While many people benefit from waking up early, it’s important to recognize that everyone’s biological clock, or circadian rhythm, is different. For some, their peak productivity might come later in the day or even at night. It’s crucial to listen to your body and observe when you feel most alert and productive. If early mornings don’t suit you, consider identifying another block of time that can be dedicated to personal development and focused work. The key is consistency and ensuring that you allocate time for your priorities, regardless of the time of day.


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ADHD and Airtable

Airtable for ADHD

Maximize Your Productivity with Airtable for ADHD

How does Airtable help individuals with ADHD stay organized and focused?

Airtable supports individuals with ADHD by offering a versatile platform that simplifies task and information management. Its user-friendly interface and customizable features like diverse view options, automation, and linked records cater to the unique organizational challenges faced by those with ADHD.

To say that ADHD has had a profound on my life is pretty much the understatement of the century. Of course, I didn’t realize how much of an understatement it was until I started to suspect and was finally diagnosed with neurodiversity last year.

I had lived for 46 years before that thinking that although my parents said I was smart, there were just some things I couldn’t wrap my head around, and although I was really good at problem-solving, understanding emotions, and music… there were just some HARD things. And I was frustrated.

The more I meet other women that have a similar story, I realized how our strengths can be so overshadowed by what’s HARD, that we constantly berate ourselves for not getting shit done.

It just so happens that my early problem-solving, combined with a Compaq computer, and lots of outdoor imagination time allowed me to mull on the ways I could make up for my “detriments”.

I became a big fan of spreadsheets, columns, and rows that helped me organize my information not only to organize my life but also to keep my notes for college classes and basically calm the overwhelming beast that would eventually take over my brain.

The world has come a long way since the first appearance of Excel, but I still feel that the structure a spreadsheet gives you can be extremely helpful in organizing information that our brains have a hard time putting together.

Airtable is a database tool that has become more and more popular in recent years for small and large businesses because of it’s flexibility and ease of use when it comes to the organization of information. It can be organized and viewed in a variety of ways, allowing the user to be able to use it in the way that works best for their brain.

I wanted to take some time to explain why the Airable features are so helpful to those who may be challenged with their executive functioning and make some recommendations for the use of this tool inside and outside of business.

What is ADHD?

ADHD, which stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, is a neurological condition that can affect a person’s ability to focus, control impulses, and maintain consistent energy levels.

It’s like having a brain that’s a bit differently wired than the neuro-typical person. It makes some things like executive function, cognitive control, and impulsiveness harder to control. As mentioned before, I have had this my whole life but only recently found out what it was. My two children have also been diagnosed with ADHD, which affects executive function and other cognitive skills.

While it can be viewed as a disability, I am extremely passionate about using the positive aspects of it to help my clients gain success and allow systems and technology to help keep focus on the things that matter.

adhd superhero

Nevertheless, there are some specific things that ND individuals can do to help themselves with the help of technology.

First, let’s talk about some of the main challenges that those who are “neuro-spicy” or neurodivergent may deal with.

  1. Easy distractions – ADHD individuals are easily distracted by multiple things in their environment. Eliminating distractions on the technology front can be extremely helpful.
  2. Trouble prioritizing. When everything feels important, nothing is important. Knowing how to identify the important tasks, data, and information quickly before their minds grab something can make the difference between focusing on a task or being distracted by something else. While we generally are better with routine tasks, sometimes things out of the ordinary may throw us off.
  3. Information Overload. One of the reasons why it can be difficult for those with ADHD is that we are easily overwhelmed by all of the information we can see on our screens. Being able to view everything at once may seem like a benefit, but in reality, making all those connections can just feel like a tidal wave washing over you.
  4. Keeping items in short-term memory. Because those with ADHD tend to have a harder time with focus on capturing and organizing information, it can be harder to keep things in short-term memory, even if they are right in front of our face. If we aren’t focusing on it, it will just pass us by.

Frustrated Entreprenuer

Features in Airtable that are beneficial for those with ADHD.

The best part about Airtable for ADHD in my opinion is that it is based on simple principles, columns and rows, but the way you can create multiple categories, and view it in different ways is what makes it SO powerful especially for ADHD brains that need to process information differently and have more unique challenges that most neuro-typical individuals.

Let’s review some of the aspects of Airtable that can really be helpful in this regard.

  1. Custom Fields: Airtable supports various field types like text, number, date, checkbox, attachments, and more. You can create a multitude of categories and fields that give a different bit of context to the main piece of information. For example, you can use attachment fields to store images or documents directly in your base, or link records to create relational databases.

    Airtable Custom Fields

  2. Linked Fields: How many times have you found yourself putting in duplicate information in different programs or even within the same software? Things like Client information and emails, or even your product descriptions, etc. Being able to link fields together in Airtable allows you to create “Master files” of different parts of your life or business and align them wherever you need to by using Linked and Lookup fields.

    Airtable Linked Fields

  3. Views: Views allow you to see your data in different formats, including grid, calendar, kanban, gallery, and form views. This flexibility helps in managing tasks, timelines, and workflows more efficiently and for different types of looking at the data. For instance, a Kanban view can be used for agile project management, while a calendar view is perfect for scheduling or looking at a Content Calendar.

    Airtable Views

  4. Formulas: Airtable allows for the use of formulas similar to those in spreadsheets, enabling you to perform calculations or manipulate data within your base. While this may be a little bit of a more advanced use case, you’d be amazed how some of the most simple formulas can help you expand the Airtable for ADHD functionality.
  5. Integrations: Through its API and services like Zapier or Integromat, Airtable can integrate with a wide array of other apps and services, automating workflows between platforms. Some of my favorites are Slack, Google Drive, and ClickUp. This means you can connect Airtable with your email, calendar, marketing platforms, CRMs, and more, streamlining processes across your tools and not having to THINK about it all the time.

    Slack Integration Automation in Airtable

  6. Base Templates: Airtable offers a wide range of pre-built templates (as do I!) for different industries and use cases. These templates can save time and provide a structured start for your project, whether you’re managing a marketing campaign, tracking a product launch, or organizing a content calendar. I don’t even start from scratch with my bases, I either use a base I’ve created before (find my templates HERE) or I use one of the many free ones that Airtable offers.
  7. Syncing: You can sync data between different bases or even from external sources like Google Calendar or Dropbox. This ensures that your information is up-to-date across all platforms, reducing manual data entry and potential errors. It’s like using multiple tech systems as 1 all-in-one system specifically designed for YOUR business.
  8. Automation – If the base is built for your business, and you have all of your views and custom fields set up to help you organize, find and act on the information in there, the next step would be to DEFINITELY include automation. I’m not even talking about external automation using third-party tools like Make or Zapier, there is a plethora of internal automation that you can create just within Airtable that puts it miles above the majority of tools available for small businesses and is a great help to those that have a hard time imprinting information in their short term memory and suffer from neurodiversity.

I could go on, but I feel as though 8 is enough to tackle at this point 🙂.

So HOW are these Airtable features helpful for Neurodiversity?

Because every person’s brain works differently, tools that are made to be flexible are always the best bet when it comes to working with them. Sometimes it takes a bit to set it up, but once it’s there, it’s smooth sailing.

Always out software for yourself to make a decision, especially if you are overwhelmed and/or think differently than the average person, but if you are someone who is easily distracted, has trouble prioritizing, lack-of-clarity, suffers from information overload or have trouble keeping information in your short-term memory, you can understand how the features above, particularly the single trusted system, can help you get things done. This is especially beneficial for neurodiverse individuals who may struggle with sensory overload and context-switching.

Being able to have all the important information you need in one place (imagine all of your Zoom links and Calendar scheduling links in one place), reduces the need to hop between different tabs or browser instances. Much less of a chance of seeing an unfinished task and getting distracted from what you were doing. Additionally, Airtable’s email management feature allows for automatic sorting of incoming emails into specific folders, reducing clutter in your inbox and saving mental energy.

Business Hub in Airtable

How about sending out an email to a lead if you haven’t contacted them in a week automatically?

Or syncing your Google calendar to your Airtable base so you can see when you have availability for consulting sessions without ever having to leave the program?

Finally, you can view the images for all of your social media posts in one place thanks to attachments AND can automatically post them on the prescheduled post-date. Amazing for your brain and saving a lot of time? Yes, please!

Interested in figuring out how to do this? Schedule a FREE Strategy call with me!

How you can get started on Airtable as a neurodivergent business owner

I want to point you to all of these awesome functionalities because I truly believe that Airtable is one of the best programs out there to do EVERYTHING that needs to be done to organize and streamline a business. However, much like any tool, starting out on it can feel a bit daunting. Especially for an ADHD entrepreneur or business owner who gets distracted by all the shiny objects.

Shiny Object

Steps to get started in Airtable

Steps to get started in Airtable

  1. Figure out the information in your business that you would REALLY benefit from it was organized. Client data? Product information? A centralized place for all of the disparate links and important things you need to see?
  2. Once you know what that is, check out my templates (here) or Airtable free templates to see if there is one that reflects your needs.
  3. Set up your first table with the MAIN information needed for the information.
    Examples: Client First Name, Last Name, Email, Socials
  4. Set up additional Tables for “related” information.
    Examples: Products Clients have purchased, Financials of when clients have last paid and what they paid, any forms that you would like them to fill out.
  5. Customize fields (Short text, long text, drop-downs, multi-list) as needed to best classify and
  6. Add all of your data and information
  7. Link the fields and tables that require it for a fuller understanding
  8. Experiment with the views to find one that works best for you and/or your team.
  9. Share and collaborate with other team members or embed the view into another tool.
  10. Iterate and Improve over time.

Want a video or youtube of these steps? Let me know! (Email me here! [email protected])

In conclusion, Airtable for ADHD 😙

So regardless of your “condition” or your struggles in everyday life with executive functioning or just being overwhelmed by all of your ideas and thoughts, make sure you take the time to recognize your unique strengths.

We are super lucky to have tools like Airtable to be able to manage some of the areas where we feel like we lack (or rather there is so much going on in our heads that we NEED something out there to put in all our brain thoughts.

The flexibility and adaptability of such platforms are especially beneficial, allowing you, and everyone to leverage their strengths and address their challenges effectively. Airtable’s features, from customizable fields to automation, provide a structured yet adaptable environment that can be tailored to various cognitive and organizational needs.

I challenge you to try it out, see how it can help you and organize all the things.

The only way to learn something is to USE it!
Grab my FREE Productivity Workbook below

Airtable for ADHD Read More »

Simple Task and Project Management

As a neuro-spicy individual, I know how frustrating it can be to manage tasks and stay organized.
ADHD or not, organizing everything in today’s world is challenging and can sometimes feel like we are constantly chasing our tail. As I like to say “The juggle is real”.
The key to combating this chaos is actually quite simple, though difficult to achieve at times especially if you are being pulled many directions.
The fact is, no one can multi-task on multiple tasks at one time, especially when both of those tasks need concentration and focus. The only time it is possible is if you are doing something that requires low cognitive effort, like walking while listening to a podcast.
The only real way to work through tasks, is to do them, one by one. In order to do that you need a method to put them in a place where they can be easily referenced (a project management tool of sorts) and a way to find them easily that matches the context of the “project” they are part of.
In this post, I’ll be sharing some tips and tricks to help you become a better project and task manager. Whether you’re a busy entrepreneur, a working mom, student, or financial analyst moonlighting as an underwater-basket-weaver, these strategies can get you to stay on track and get things done. Getting things done is the key to opening your life up to all possibilities.
So, grab your favorite beverage (extra caffeine recommended) and let’s dive into the world of project and task management. You might just find that it’s not as boring as you thought, and that mastering online task management and project management can make you feel like a total ninja in your day-to-day.

Categorizing your tasks

Managing the “to-do’s” in life and business can be a daunting task in itself, and even more so if you struggle with ADHD or simply have too much on your plate. This is why I recommend categorizing your tasks into 3 groups to help contextualize each.
  1. Repeating operational tasks
  2. 1-time tasks that will take less than an hour to complete
  3. Project-based tasks that are either client-related or internal project related.
  4. Okay, this is a bonus one, but it’s also important to create emergency tasks, just in case there is something that needs emergency attention, like a downed website… or a pandemic or something.

Repeating Operational Tasks

These are those operational, repeating tasks that MUST be done to keep your business running. They can fall into any category of your business; marketing, operations, finances, etc. They are well-defined and have to happen at a regular cadence in order to function.
Like me and my coffee in the morning. Anyone relate????? ☕☕☕
These are daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, even yearly tasks that need to be put on your agenda to make sure you dont’ disappoint a client or… get audited by the government. (YAY taxes)
Daily tasks might include routine activities such as checking emails or responding to messages, I prefer a “Daily activities’ task that has a checklist of everything I need to do every day, check emails, contact my clients, put out a social post, respond to questions.
Weekly tasks can include preparing for upcoming meetings or setting up appointments. I have “reviewing my finances” and “going through my newsletters” as one of my weekly tasks (usually done on Fridays when I have more “breathing” room)
Monthly tasks could include reviewing financial reports or analyzing progress towards long-term goals, while project-based categories could involve working on specific assignments or projects.

1-time tasks

You know those pesky tasks that need to be done, but don’t necessarily fit into a project or category? You know… like, you know you need to create a project plan for XYZ but you can’t put it under XYZ because it doesn’t exist yet
Or you need to remember to remove a client from their group program chat 2 weeks after the official end of their program, but it can’t be automated, but doesn’t really make sense to add it to the program workflow?
Yes, these tasks. They need to live someplace where they will get the attention they need.
I use the following rules to make sure I know what tasks belong in this category.
  1. The task must take an hour or less to complete (or it needs to be it’s own project)
  2. The task must not belong to an existing project or timeline
  3. The task is not an “idea” or something that belongs in a brain-dump area.
WARNING: Do not make this a dumping ground for all tasks that come into your head. The purpose of managing your tasks is so that you can more easily understand the context surrounding it and to make educated decisions on the correct priority of it.

Project-Based tasks

All previous project managers will innately understand this one.
These are all the tasks related to specific projects with an end goal (or a sprint goal) that you are currently working on.
These are usually Client projects, or internal business projects that have specific deliverables, timelines and people responsible.

Emergency Tasks

This is exactly what it sounds like. Tasks that need to be thrown to the top of the “important” pile. That should be highlighted in Red with exclamations after that require everyone to stop what they are doing and focus on the highest priority of all.
Use this one wisely, it should really be an “emergency” when used. Functionality of the business is impeded or someone unexpectedly is in the hospital and all of their tasks need to be delegated to someone else.
Effectively categorizing tasks is critical to getting the most out of your time and resources.
Putting them in the right places in your project management or task management tool is important for you and your team’s understanding of what is part of a project with a timeline, or what can be done in other parts of the day.

How to create project categories in your PM tool

There are some of you that subscribe to the “nesting doll” theory of project management, where every task belongs to some sort of project. While that is a good theory, it is not as usable as one may think. Categorizing as stated above not only keeps tasks where they belong, but also allows for the “organized chaos” that business can bring, without blowing the whole organization system.
Depending on the tool that you use, this can be done with folders, sub-categories or columns. Plain old to-do lists can be color coded to separate each of the tasks.
I challenge you to take a look at the tasks that you have for the next week, and categorize them using this FREE tool I created.

Defining the Scope of the Task/Project

Defining the scope and requirements might not sound like the most thrilling part of your project, but trust me, it’s important.
Keep in mind, this is for longer-term projects that have an ultimate final goal… repeating operational tasks will be talked about in a different section.
Especially when you are in the throws of doing all the things, and managing all the people… having an understanding from everyone involved in the project what the deliverables are, how long it will take and who will be working on it is pretty dang important.
I always create a project document, that outlines all the pieces of information that the project will be about, anything specific about that project that needs to be thought of, and who will be responsible for making it actually HAPPEN. (In many cases, that’s you!)
I recommend including the following:
  • Name and Description of project
  • Overall Goal of the project.
  • When should the project be completed
  • What are the deliverables from the project?
  • What tech needs to be involved?
  • What is the workflow of the final product?
  • What are the potential issues with this project?
  • Who will be working on this project?
  • What are all the existing files/assets that are part of this project?
  • Kickoff meeting.

Breaking down Projects into Tasks – Subtasks – Checklists

It’s easy to tell someone to make you a sandwich, but chances are, if you just do that, you are not going to get the sandwich you are hoping for. This is why breaking down projects and/or tasks into smaller sub-tasks is important.
When a task seems overwhelming or too large to tackle, breaking it down into smaller, more manageable pieces can make it feel less daunting.
To do this, start by identifying the key steps or components required to complete the task. You can do this on a document or word file, whatever you find easiest to use. Each step will have specific instructions for it and may need to be broken down even more.
Sometimes a task may have different parts, but doesn’t necessarily need to have “sub-tasks” added to them because they are something that everyone knows to do anyway. In this case, I recommend creating a checklist within the description of the task if possible, to still be able to support a new employee, or just help double-check for those more experienced.
Doing this will help the team stay more focused and organized. Your managers and CEO’s can track progress and identify roadblocks more easily and be able to hit deadlines first.
Also, breaking down tasks into smaller parts can also help with prioritization and using everyone’s time efficiently. Because the more you get done, the less you have to do!


Set clear deadlines and identify priorities

The job of the project manager is not only make sure that task are completed, but that they are completed by their deadline and are able to identify which tasks need higher priority in order to keep the entire project moving in the right direction.
These deadlines help communicate to the team how to manage their workload as well as assisting the managers in how to best support the team.
To do this, you simply need to add a “due date” to each of the tasks in the list. In many cases, the priorities will be the tasks that are due or almost due. In other cases, there may be a very hot job that comes across your plate, or something that needs to be done immediately in which case the Manager should communicate (or put a task in the “emergency” section of the Project Management tool) to make sure the initiative has the right support
Once you do this, it is imperative to encourage the team to meet the deadlines, and don’t fall into the trap of “Oops, deadline passed, oh well”.
You know what I’m talking about.
If this starts to happen, then there is a subtle message that goes out to the entire team that deadlines are optional, and they become less effective in the long run.
Once everyone is on board, and use to prioritizing due to deadlines I know you will notice how much more quickly things get done.
Increase that productive, not the stress level! D

Assigning tasks to team members

Okay, so we know what the task is, we’ve broken it down, we have given it a due date…. and now what?
Well we need SOMEONE to work on it!
Accountability people! It’s worth it’s weight in gold.
Every task, big or small should have an assignee.
This will ensure that everyone is crystal clear on their responsibilities and the workload is distributed evenly. That what we love… even Steven!
You should assign the tasks according to the “role” of the individual doing it. For example, I wouldn’t assign an account manager a task of posting social media (unless it was part of their role description), even if it’s part of a project they are assigned to.
All tasks in my opinion should be assigned by a project manager or whoever is in charge of creating the projects. Those “doing” the work should be focusing on doing, not thinking who should be in charge of the next step. I could write a whole other blog post about this… so I’ll stop there 🙂
When you look at the task, think to yourself, “What role does this fall under?” and put the person in THAT role on that specific task.


So these are just a few tips to think about when organizing the tasks for your business, whether you are just 1 individual, or you are working with a team. The importance of categorizing, defining scope, assigning due dates, priorities and who is responsible is the framework of a project that is well communicated and effective.

Looking to learn more?


Check out these blogs: 
Using ClickUp – Beginner Edition
Digital calendar organization system

Also sign up to get my Task Categorization tool to help start getting them organized.

Check out my YouTube channel where I walk through these concepts using ClickUp (my favorite project management too) 

Want to chat? 
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