The topic of time management was discussed in considerable detail in episode 53 of the podcast.
I think it’s important for musicians to manage their time wisely, as it can be challenging to find a way to stay on top of all of their activities. This is especially true if you are trying to market yourself online.
Ultimately, we all have the same 24 hours in a day. How you use that time is up to you, but if you want to get more done, you have to make time work for you and not the other way around.
If you are struggling to get time under your control, here are some thoughts for you to consider.
Limit Your Social Media Time to 30 Minutes Per Day
Unless you have an enormous and/or particularly engaged following, or you are spreading yourself thin across too many social channels, chance are you won’t need to invest more than 30 minutes into social media per day.
I can think of plenty of things that are far more important than social media when it comes to online marketing; blogging, email marketing, and outreach just to name a few.
If you are adequately focused, 30 minutes should give you sufficient time to post, share and interact on a daily basis.
Learn How to Power Blog
If you have a blog to maintain, realize that you don’t have to re-invent the wheel every time you go to write something new.
You can leverage the content others have already created, add your perspective to it, and even re-purpose things you’ve created in the past.
Blogging can be a huge time and energy drain if you don’t have a proper plan. Make sure to keep plenty of ideas stored up so you can power through it without hemming and hawing over ideas or a lack thereof.
Thanks goes to Jon Ochs for the power blogging idea.
Reaching out to people, asking questions, and seeking out partnerships is probably one of the best ways to grow your career.
However, a lot of us tend to put it off or set it aside for later, don’t we? That might be a byproduct of being human, but I would suggest keeping it close to the top of your priority list.
Making phone calls and sending out emails doesn’t have to take a lot of time. It’s all of the premeditation and negative thinking that eats away at your time and energy. Get better at organizing your communication so you can’t get it done fast.
Check Your Email Less Often
I can’t speak for you, but most of us are in the habit of checking our inboxes more often than we should. I can admit it.
Recognize that email is a convenient organization system for other people’s agenda for you. People have demands, requests and questions, and that’s fine, but if you’re prioritizing email, then you’re not putting your personal agenda first.
We all get emails that need to be answered, but generally if you set aside a bit of time once or twice per day to batch your communication, you will be far more efficient and effective.
Check Your Stats Less Often
We all like to watch our website traffic and social followings grow, but at the end of the day the information isn’t terribly useful unless you can actually do something with it.
This isn’t to say that you can’t use your stats to determine what kind of posts are doing well and what type of content you should be creating more of, but nothing productive is accomplished just by watching your stats.
Plan to view your stats at a particular time or day of the week, and leave it at that.
Separate One-Time Tasks from Ongoing Tasks
Some things will only require your attention once. Other things will require your attention on an ongoing basis. Make sure to separate these things.
For example, if you are building your website, writing a press release or recording an album, those are all basically one-time tasks. When the project is done, it’s done.
On the other hand, things that require maintenance like blogging or social media are ongoing tasks. You need to invest a little bit of time into them on a daily or weekly basis.
This separation is vitally important, as it will enable you to see the to-do items on your list that you can get out of the way for good.
Final Thoughts on Managing Your Time
There is so much more that I could get into here, but I think you’re starting to get the idea. By planning well, staying organized, multitasking effectively and batching processes, you can become more effective in your daily routine.
It isn’t necessarily about staying up later or getting up earlier, though that may be a natural byproduct of wanting to accomplishing more. It’s about being conscious of what you are saying “yes” to. Whenever you say “yes” to something, you are always saying “no” to something else. Be aware of those choices.
Can you think of any other time management hacks? What has worked well for you? Let us know in the comments section below!
Author: David Andrew Wiebe
David Andrew Wiebe has built an extensive career in songwriting, live performance, recording, session playing, production work, investing, and music instruction. In addition to helping musicians unlock their full potential, he also continues to maintain a touring schedule with multiple bands.