Jade Boyd Co.

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How to Refresh your Life and Business Routines for Summer

How to Refresh your Life and Business Routines for Summer | The Business Minimalist™ Podcast with Jade Boyd
I'm Jade!

MBA | Business Strategist | Business Minimalist | I help busy creatives bring order to chaos with an intentional business strategy and simple systems.

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Most business owners want to slow down and take time off during the summer, but few will actually take the steps they need to take (ahead of time) to make that possible! This summer, I’m completely unplugging from business for 8 weeks, and taking an additional 6 weeks semi-off. But let me warn you: slow summers don’t just happen! It takes a lot of intention and planning to take extended time off without sacrificing your paycheck. In this episode, I’m sharing tangible tips for making your dream summer schedule a reality without abandoning your business goals. Press play to live your best life while going after your business growth goals this summer.

How to Refresh your Life and Business Routines for Summer | The Business Minimalist™ Podcast with Jade Boyd

Key Takeaways from this Episode

  • A vision for running your business and enjoying your summer in a way that feels aligned to you.
  • My seven category planning process to make your ideal summer come true.
  • Questions to ask yourself about your life and business before planning out your summer.
  • Tips on automating some of your work load to have more time off this summer.

Helpful Resources Related to This Episode


Click here to read the full episode transcript!

Jade Boyd: Hopefully you’ve blocked some time on your calendar, both for the one-time projects. If you need a day to paint your house or a week to go on vacation or individual date nights with your husband three times during a month or whatever that might look like blocking time for those one-time things that you want to do on the personal side of things, but also the regular week to week time that you want blocked for personal life as well, then we move into business.

Summer is right around the corner. It’s coming up in just a few weeks. And so many business owners want to slow down for the summer and have this vision of this slow, peaceful fun-filled summer, but in reality, creating a summer like that as a business owner does take a lot of intention and planning and going into this summer personally, I am taking eight weeks off for maternity leave and an additional six weeks semi-off, where I will only be supporting my coaching clients and not doing much else in my business, preparing to come back after that to a two day workweek and that has taken a lot of intention and planning on my part, starting months ago, and I will talk more about how I’m planning for maternity leave in an upcoming episode. So if you’re not subscribed to the podcast yet, make sure you hit subscribe and I’m going to go way more into detail about how I’m planning for maternity leave as a business owner in a future episode, but today, I just want to talk about planning for slower summers and what it takes from a planning and intention perspective as a business owner to create the summer that you actually want to experience.

Where you can enjoy your life. You can do all the fun things that come with summer and maybe your kids being out of school for the summer, or having just a slower pace and more family and friend activities going on more time outside, more vacations, things like that while also not sacrificing profit as a business owner. Not pulling back at completely from business, still making small steps in the right direction, and not doing an either or for the summer, but how can you do both in a way that feels good and feels aligned to you.

That is what we’re talking about today.

So the first thing that I want you to do wherever you’re at, unless you’re driving, don’t close your eyes if you’re driving, but if you’re in a spot where you can just get quiet and sit for a second and really think about and envision, what does your ideal summer look like in this season? Because every year is going to be a little bit different. We’re all in different seasons of business and life, but ideally. If you’re dreaming up the perfect summer for this summer and the season that you’re in, how old your kids are, who’s going to be around you, where you’re located, places that you want to experience this summer.

What would that even look like?

Because oftentimes we don’t take the time to sit and reflect and think about what do I want for my summer. We get so busy that before we know it, it’s July and summer is almost over. And we found ourselves like hustling the whole time and not changing anything and then just jumping back into the next routine. Right? So take the time to sit down and think about what would your ideal summer look like? What would be true? How would you spend your time? How do you want to feel this summer? How many hours a week do you want to work? Just sit down and be still for a second and let what comes to the surface, come to the surface and it might surprise you what you envision or what you realize when you do make that time in space to just sit down and create that vision for what your perfect summer will look like again for this year.

And then we’re going to build your business around your life and not the other way around. We’re going to start with what you want your life to look like, what you want your ideal summer to look like, and then we’re going to figure out how to make your business fit into that vision in a way that you’re still pursuing your goals, you’re still making money. You’re still prioritizing business growth, but you’re doing it in a way that’s aligned to your life and not the other way around.

And then when you do have that vision, you’ve sat down and journaled, or you’ve created a vision board, however you prefer to do it. You know what you want your summer to look like, then we’re going to think about personal life and business in very specific categories step-by-step to make incremental decisions, to make sure that your schedule is set up with the white space that you need to make your ultimate vision for summer come true.

So whether you want to spend Fridays at the pool, or you want to take a week off every month, this summer, or if you want to take the entire month of July off every year, whatever your ideal summer looks like, we’re going to walk through this step-by-step and these are the same categories that I use for absolutely everything.

So if you’ve been listening to the podcast, you’ve definitely heard these categories before, they haven’t changed for me in over two years. These are categories that I think about when it comes to many different types of planning and decision-making things in my business. And they stay the same because they work.

So we’re going to go, step-by-step starting with your personal life again, life first businesses means we start with your personal life and what you want there. And then we’ll move into business and think step-by-step what needs to happen in order to make your ideal summer come true. So starting on the personal side of things personal, I break into three categories, personal health, relationships, and home.

So starting with your personal health. What would be personally fulfilling for you this summer? Recently, I have just had an urge to be much more creative. I don’t know if it’s just a matter of me being in routines and kind of rinse and repeating in my business over the last few months, which is great and was the goal that I had going into this year to create systems that would allow me to take time off and automate and delegate as much as possible. But that’s also opened up this urge for me to want to be more creative and explore new things. So looking at summer, what would personally be fulfilling for you when you’re thinking about your personal health, what is your ideal summer personal health game?

What are the things that you want to make space for?

I think it’s really easy to create visions and our mind that we think that we want, but we don’t actually want in reality. A few years ago, I was walking by the pool. We live in the neighborhood very, very close to our city pool. And I often walk through that part of the neighborhood when I’m just going on daily walks and I was walking by the pool towards the end of the summer and realized that I, at the beginning of the summer, imagined that I would spend all this time with the pool because we live so close and it’d be so easy to take a book to the pool on Fridays and get a tan right, but then I was walking by the pool, realizing that I had never done that the entire summer. And at first I was thinking that maybe I didn’t do a good enough job planning or that I should have been more intentional with how I set up my schedule or like put it on my calendar, even on Fridays to remind myself that that’s something that I wanted to do. But now looking back on that, I think that I had idealized, what I thought somebody else’s ideal summer would look like, like that’s what you’re supposed to do, but in reality, I really don’t like the pool. At least in this stage of my life going by myself, especially with a book it’s noisy, there’s kids everywhere screaming.

There’s never any chairs. So I ended up laying in the grass and it’s really uncomfortable. You have to pay to get in, but I don’t even really get in the pool because the water is so freezing and I’m cold all the time, so it’s not really ideal for me. And I think I’ve just kind of let go of that vision of what, like my personal health relaxation activity for summer might be, and have started just being more honest with myself on what I actually want, and ideally like I would be sitting on my back porch with free food and unlimited cold water from my own house. Able to go to the bathroom without worrying about somebody watching my stuff. All of those things that come with staying at your own house and also enjoying the sunshine in my own backyard, being able to like switch the activity and not have to pack a bag and think about everything ahead of time before I get there. And so going into your summer, thinking about what would be ideal, make sure that you’re not just writing down things that are ideal in theory, but actually in practice, things that you would really enjoy doing, and that would be life giving for you. So the first thing, thinking about your personal health, what would be personally fulfilling for you this summer?

How were you going to fill your own cup? The second category in the personal group is relationships. So summer is such a good time to spend with people, especially if you’re in the Midwest like me, people just come out of their houses during the summer. It’s so funny because I was 29 weeks pregnant, I think before my neighbor found out that I was pregnant because we just do not run into each other unless it’s summer and we’re spending time outside and I’m going on walks more often and stuff like that. Or like, I just never see them. And so in the winter, even when I was taking walks on warmer days, I was wearing like a giant puffy coat. Right? And wasn’t showing as much under all those layers. And so, it took a really long time for her to figure out that I was pregnant, just because people don’t come out of their houses as much until summer hits if you’re in the Midwest and other places in the country, you’re probably outside all the time. But I have noticed just in our own rhythms and routines that we spend a lot more social time. There’s so many more parties and get togethers and like barbecues and backyard hangouts in the summer. And I want to be able to attend as many of those as possible. So what does it look like for you to spend time with the people that matter for you this summer? What kind of space on your calendar, or even things that you didn’t things that you want to plan yourself. Last year I had this idea of hosting a backyard concert where friends of ours would like sing and play guitar and there’d be food and be really chill and making that happen was a lot of work actually, but it’s something that I really wanted to do.

And again, that wouldn’t have happened any other time of year, other than summer, summer just opens up really unique opportunities to spend time with people, especially, like I said, if your kids are out of school for the summer and you have more one-on-one time or more flexible time to spend with them, there’s only so many summers that we get.

And as a soon to be mom, that’s already something that I’m thinking about and something that if you are a mom and have kids who are going to be out of school for the summer, you’re definitely starting to think about as well. So relationships. What do you want to make space for the summer? Who are the people that you want to spend intentional time with? How can you save time for them on your calendar?

The third category is home. So if you’ve heard me talk about home stuff on the podcast before I often say that it’s your unpaid job and that job doesn’t end just because it’s summer. So what does managing your home look like in the summer? It might look a lot different than it does during other times of the year. So maybe you want to do spring cleaning and that’s going to bleed into summer, or maybe, you know, that you’re going to have to do a lot more laundry because sports are coming up and they’re going to have dirty clothes every single day. Or you’re going to have to make space for back to school shopping and certain household management tasks like that, that are very seasonal in summer related. Maybe you want to grill out more, so you want to research more grilling out recipes or stock up on freezer, meat or whatever that might look like. So for me going into summer what I am changing about home, me being that I’m going to be due June 15th when I’m doing a crap ton of meal planning and meal prepping and creating as many freezer meals ahead of time as possible.

And also spring cleaning and decluttering my entire house before baby comes. So that I feel really good. And it’s even easier to maintain my house in the summer because I know that my priority is going to be figuring out how to take care of a newborn and be a new mom. And I don’t want my house to get in the way of that.

So you might have different goals for your household management responsibilities this summer, generally, I’m thinking most people listening to this will want the house stuff to be not a priority so that you can free up time for your personal health and for those relationships and for the fun parts of summer. So thinking ahead of time of what can you do now to make managing your house over the summer, knowing this season of life and business that you’re in, how can you make that easier for yourself later on? And maybe what are some of the fun house projects that you want to spend time on? Maybe you want to start a garden. Or maybe you have a patio renovation project, or you want to paint the outside of your house or something like that, that again, they’re seasonal opportunities for stuff like that. When it comes to household management to. So, what do you want to make space for when it comes to your home this summer?

So that’s wrapping up personal, only three categories, personal health relationships, and home. And kind of casting a more specific vision about what you want each of those three areas to look like for your summer.

And then we move on to business. So business, I split into four categories.

The first one is goals. The second one is marketing. The third is clients and the fourth is admin. And again, if you’ve heard me talk about any planning related topic or organization related topic on the podcast, you’ll know that all come back to these four categories for business again and again, and again, because they work, they make sense and they’ve stuck with my business for a very long time. So when it comes to planning your ideal summer for your business around these categories, you already have an idea of what you want your personal life to look like and talking about scheduling out your ideal week. Hopefully you’ve blocked some time on your calendar, both for the one-time projects. If you need a day to paint your house or a week to go on vacation or individual date nights with your husband three times during a month or whatever that might look like blocking time for those one-time things that you want to do on the personal side of things, but also the regular week to week time that you want blocked for personal life as well, then we move into business.

So first of all, you should have a good idea overall, how many hours a week do you want to work on business this summer? Again, you might take the entire month of July off, you might take a week every single month this summer off. You might cut back to four day work weeks or three day work weeks during the summer, you might make sure that you can get up super early and work six to noon so that you have the whole afternoon off to take the kids to the pool. Whatever that looks like, I want you to start by setting a container for the hours that you’re going to work on business stuff that you’re going to commit to your business that you need to keep your business running the summer.

What does that ideal schedule overall? Business versus non-business hours look like for you. And then we’re going to break that time into these four categories.

So the first category, like I said, is goals. So revisiting your goals for this year for your business. And when I’m helping my clients set goals and when I’m setting goals for my own business, it mostly comes down to time and money. What are my financial goals for this year and what are my time goals for this year?

And we’ve already kind of set your time container for summer, but then thinking about your financial goals or any other major goals that you have for this business this year, what does that look like for you to pursue those goals this summer? So, again, specifically thinking about financial goals, if you’re breaking that down, you know, you’re working less. Maybe you pivot from marketing one-on-one services into more passive income and you switch your marketing plan so that you’re still pursuing your financial goals and making progress on them over the summer, but you’re not having to put more time in. What does it look like for you to pursue your goals while prioritizing the schedule that you want for your life this summer? That’s going to be so different for every single business owner listening to this, but ultimately you’re breaking down your annual goals and figuring out how much time do I need to work on my goals and how am I going to work on my goals during the summer.

With my clients, I go through a strategic planning activity with them and we refresh this every single quarter, but overall at the beginning of the program, we look at 12 months at a time and look at their annual goals where they want to be from a financial standpoint, and then break that down into what services and products are they going to offer, and what’s their capacity for reaching those goals. And then we’d look at it month by month and try to focus on one thing at a time as they’re pursuing those goals. One service that they’re focused on selling. One product that they’re focused on launching. And so over the summer, making sure that you know, what do you need to do this summer to keep moving the needle on your business goals and how much time a week do you want to dedicate to that? If you’re working four days a week, could you dedicate four hours of your week, every single week, this summer to working on something related to your goals, whether that’s creating a new opt-in or starting your email list or batching out your content. Or creating a new course, whatever those goals, specific projects look like for you, those one-time projects that you know are going to move the needle in your business and help you stop just repeating what you’re doing over and over again and get to the next level.

How much time every week do you want to save for your goals?

The second category under business is marketing. And I like to think of marketing as the little lever that you pull to make money in your business. And so what does marketing look like for you this summer? What does it look like for you to show up consistently? Can you batch your marketing ahead of time?

Are you going to show up a little bit less frequently, but still consistently, maybe you move from posting five times a week on Instagram to two times a week on Instagram, but again, you’re still remaining consistent. You might not be going all out, but you’re not ghosting your audience either. You’re still showing up to serve.

So what does marketing look like? For you. And how many hours a week do you want to work on marketing this summer? Like I said, I’m taking the entire summer off. So I’ve been batching content for months to be able to prep for that so that I can still show up consistently on the podcast and in other channels while I’m gone for maternity leave and planning to promote more passive products, not booking in person clients since I won’t be in person for discovery calls or coaching calls this summer. But, batching has been my strategy for showing up consistently without having to spend any time on marketing over the eight weeks that I want to take fully off. And the additional six weeks that I’m taking part-time off actually, because I won’t be working on marketing during those weeks either. I will only be showing up for my coaching clients.

But if you don’t want to batch everything ahead of time, you just want to scale back or do things differently, or even do like a special summer series, if your business is seasonal and it makes sense for you to talk about a different topic the summer, what does marketing look like? How much time a week do you need to show up consistently with your marketing plan? Put it on your calendar and make sure it fits into your ideal schedule, that container that you set for your business hours.

The third category is clients. So how many clients do you want to take on the summer? What does it look like? What types of clients do you want to take on this summer? Are you going to do more VIP days or are you going to focus on just serving your retainer clients? Do you want to cut off the new clients and just serve your current capacity until you open up more spots in the fall? What does your workload need to look like in order to support your ideal schedule?

Do you need to set better boundaries with your clients or even just enforce the boundaries that you already technically have that are in your contract and in your agreement that you aren’t actually sticking to. What does it look like for the way that you’re interacting and serving your clients to be aligned with the season that you want to experience the summer? And again, make sure you have enough time in your calendar on a week-to-week basis to serve your clients while this summer while taking that time off and making that space for life that you wanted to create.

So how many hours a week is it going to take to serve your clients in the way that you want to this summer and making sure that fits within your ideal schedule?

And then the last category is admin. So these are all those little tasky, low focus things that happen in your business that are nice to have done, but they don’t technically need to be done. They’re not very urgent the world isn’t going to end if they don’t get done. So I think about this, of like checking emails super regularly, or updating your book super regularly. Organizing things on the back end, like going through your downloads folder. Things like that, that are nice to have done, yes, they help you keep the doors open. They help you be a present and productive business owner, but they’re not necessarily the most important things. So again, what does admin work look like for you this summer? Can you automate or delegate any of this ahead of time going into summer so that you can free up more time to work on the more important things. Or take more time off.

Could you just batch it and less regular periods, like maybe you’re checking in on your email once a week and you have an autoresponder that’s telling people that that’s when you’re checking email this summer. And making sure you’re setting autoresponders for when you’re going on vacation too, or if you’re taking a month off, of course, letting people know when you’ll get back to them. But for any of your admin tasks? Could you schedule like a full-on admin day once a month over the summer?

So there’s only three days this summer where you’re touching any admin work, and you’re just cranking it out and getting all of those dopamine hits back to back, working through your admin list. What could it look like for you to cut back on admin work, to make more space for the ideal summer that you’re envisioning?

And then again, like with anything else, making sure that you’re aware of how much time that’s going to take you and that it’s on your calendar so that you’re planning ahead of time to succeed with your ideal schedule and that the time that you’re taking off isn’t spent being stressed about what you should be or could be doing for your business, so that you know that there is time scheduled for all of the things that need to get done this summer. There’s a time and place to do them and you don’t need to be worried about them when you are trying to unplug and be offline and be present with the people who matter to you.

So just to recap, how to hack your ideal summer. First, it starts with your vision in what’s going to be important to you, how you want to spend your summer. What is your summer vision?

Second, it comes down to setting up your ideal schedule for a summer and planning your time around the things that matter most to you. And we think about this in seven categories. Personal health, relationships, home, your business goals, marketing clients, and admin. And if you go step-by-step through that list, thinking through how each of those pieces can be aligned to the summer schedule that you want to experience, but also to your goals and what you want to make progress on the summer and what you want to accomplish this summer, if you think about those two things hand in hand, as you’re going through each of these seven categories, it is very step-by-step and hopefully it gives you some structure for making those decisions. And again, planning ahead of time so that you can get some of that stuff planned out or batched out now to prep you going into summer to feel like it’s a lot smoother transition than, wow, all of a sudden everything has changed. There’s so many new things on my plate and I haven’t prepped to be able to make space for all of this. That is where I don’t want you to find yourself as soon as summer hits. So this is airing a few weeks before official summer is going to hit, and I hope this gives you a little bit of time to intentionally plan for your ideal summer.

So until next time business minimalists take what you learned today and get 1% better this week.

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Hi, I'm jade!

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From MBA to Brand Photographer to Business Coach, I learned the hard way how to build a life-first business that allows me to work part-time hours without sacrificing profit. Now I help service providers simplify and scale their businesses so they can earn their dream income while living life on their schedule. If you're ready to build a sustainable, profitable service business (without the burnout), apply for the Business Edit Group Coaching Program today!

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Jade Boyd Co.