By: Aminat O. OdunEwu-Seese @Lady_Meansie_Corner
Every business owner has a lot of priorities to juggle and managing how to balance all of these priorities is definitely an art form. If you follow me on social media, you know that not only do I own and manage Striving For Modesty, I am also the owner of Striving For Clarity as well as being an MUA and Younique Presenter. Alongside all of this, I recently joined the leadership team of an all-women travel company, Girls LOVE Travel as their Community Development Manager. On top of all of this, I still have my #1 job of being a wife and mother.
With all of these roles comes a lot of various responsibilities. I’m known for saying “ I thrive on being busy” and it’s true. I enjoy having a lot going on. On an average day, I’ll have over 20-30 things to do consisting of multiple video meetings scheduled, articles to edit, numerous emails to respond to from SFM manufacturers, SFC Guest Contributors and other contacts, finances to balance and more. Of course, this is only the beginning. I also have an avidly mobile nine month old who must be fed and played with throughout the day, and lastly, prepping and cooking our family meals.
You’re probably wondering, “How does she ensure that she takes care of all of her responsibilities?” Well the key to ensuring that all my responsibilities are done is scheduling. I have a daily schedule that I essentially live by. In my schedule, I allot times for each area in my life. For instance, 9-10am is when I respond to messages, 12-1pm is when I pray zuhr and work on dinner prep, 1-2pm is when I “learn”(sometimes it’s business related and other times its Islam related). Overall, every second of my day is generally booked from 6:30am-5:30pm. After 5:30pm, I am usually still working but with less structure.
Do I get distracted? Yes, Getting distracted definitely happens but that’s where Salah comes in. Stopping what I am doing to go and make salah gives me an opportunity to clear my head, concentrate on my prayer and then refocus on work.
So, how do I make sure I get everything done with my insane schedule? A planner! I am really into organization(a necessity when you’re working for yourself) and a planner, to-do lists and other task management tools are a favorite of mine.
When I was still in school, I utilized the New York Public Library planner. I was a big fan of the layout. For the last three years though, I’ve been using Plum Paper planners and they are AMAZING! I absolutely love that I can customize the planner to what suits my needs best.
This year, I ordered a planner as well as a notebook. My planner is where I note all of my day-to-day and monthly outlook events as well as my To-Do list. For the notebook, I wanted to have something aside from my planner where I could take notes and jot down ideas but also have all of the essential things I need to run my business(es). In my notebook, I added the Blog, Sales, Social Media and To-Do List sections. Each of these sections are filled with all of the various common things that one would need for that area. For instance, the “Blog” section has an area to list your goals for the the month, your post ideas, track your expenses/income, giveaways and more. The “Social Media” section starts off with an area to create and develop your entire social media plan and goals for the year and then 12 pages for monthly audits.
Having my planner and notebook with all these sections allows me to keep everything organized without needing a bunch of different tools.
Despite the workload and constantly being busy, being a business owner is fun. I enjoy the work that I do. I love getting messages from customers letting me know how much they loved their scarf or abaya. I enjoy editing articles for SFC and assisting GLT with building the online community.
Overall, being a Busy Muslimah definitely has its challenges but with structure, great organizational skills and a nice planner, things can run smoothly.
How do you stay organized? Are you #TeamPlanner or #TeamMentalReminders? Let us know in the comments.