What is Focus Time?
TIME. People will argue that it’s the most important commodity in life. It slips away from us in the blink of an eye. Take my nephew for example. He’s 13 and in the eighth grade. Now, I see him at holidays and visit whenever I can, but it seems he grows an inch every time I see him!
Time in the office can be a tricky thing: On a busy day (as most are in property management) time can slip away from you so quickly that it leaves you feeling frustrated that you did not accomplish the tasks you had set for yourself when you started work that morning.
When I think about how my perspective on time and time management has changed over the years, I’m pretty proud of myself: I worked my butt off to figure out how to set boundaries that work for me. What I found was life-changing and that’s why I want to share it with you.
A funny thing happened when I put effort into working less hours and managing my day to honor my mental health… I came to a realization that if I could do my work quicker and more efficiently, I would have so much more time and energy to give back to my team and family. That’s really what I wanted!
I started to set one boundary at a time by defining a scenario and then determining my ideal response to that scenario. As obstacles arose, I set strategies for how to overcome them.
One boundary I set for myself was to set focus time. During focus time, I would focus on an important task and not respond to my colleagues' questions or emails until the time I allocated for that task was up. It was much harder to do this than I thought it would be. I had to teach others to respect my new boundary and figure out a strategy for how to respond when my focus time was interrupted.
But the cool thing about my new boundary is that my entire team benefited from it in the end! At a staff meeting, we discussed how to honor focus time within the office and determined that our assistant manager Crista (see below!) would answer customer, maintenance and leasing inquiries while I was in focus time, and I would answer inquiries while she was in focus time.
Shortly after implementing this idea, another obstacle arose. Krista didn’t have a door to close in her office, so she had to ward off constant interruptions during focus time. We had to come up with another strategy to overcome the new obstacle, so we made a very official sign that said “Door closed until 1:30ish.” And believe it or not, after a little time, people began to respect the sign and our productivity increased significantly.
We would get so much more done during our periods of focus time, opening up mental space and positivity to give back to our team, residents and family for the rest of the day! Literally everyone benefited from us setting our new boundary.
If you want to learn how to set boundaries in the workplace to help manage your time, mood and energy, so you can give your best self to others, I would love to help you! So many others within our Addicted to Busy coaching program have worked to figure out what boundaries work for them, and I would love for you to do the same!
Are you struggling to balance work, health and life?
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