Amanda McKinney Intellectual Health Occupational Health

Tools to Go From “Busy” to Productive

By Amanda McKinney

“I’m so busy” 

Do you find yourself saying that phrase often? Or how about “I’m so tired”? 

I get it sister, we all feel that and that feeling is real. There’s no shortage of things on your to-do list and it’s constantly growing. Whether it’s the never ending battle with laundry or working your side-hustle so you can live your passion and be your own boss. You’re doing amazing things in this world but that comes at the expense of your sleep and sanity too often. 

So I want to share a few time management tips that I’ve seen work not only in my life but in my student’s lives too. I’ve coached many yoga teachers who are working hard to build their business while also being a wife, sister, mother, partner, friend and so many other things. 

As a wife, daughter, friend, step-mom and business owner myself I’ve learned the hard way on how to balance many things. And now I get asked on a weekly basis “Amanda, how in the world do you get it all done?”. Well friend, I’ve got you covered with these tips! Buckle up sister! 

Know Your MIT 

I’m not the first person to use this phrase but I’m not sure who to give credit to or else I would. But there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t know my MIT = Most Important Task. This is the thing that has to get done or *things* will hit the fan. You know that thing. Maybe it’s sending an email, paying a bill or picking up your kiddo from school. It’s the thing that needs to get done, TODAY. I like to look at this in a few ways: daily and weekly. So if you’re working your side hustle and you want to make constant progress in your business, you might have a weekly MIT but you might work on smaller chunks each day. Make this work for you but know your MIT at least weekly. 

Be Okay With The Minimum 

This goes hand in hand with your MIT because sometimes you will get the minimum done. Yes, you want to do all the things and rock your day but we can’t do that every day. You will burn out if you go this hard. So we need to know what that minimum is that we need to get done but we also have to be okay (for real) when we can only do the minimum. And if you’re like me, you have to be really, really with yourself on this one. Because in my head the “minimum” usually includes the kitchen being clean, I’m at inbox zero and I’m in bed by 8pm. Let me tell you how many days this happens — not many. That’s not the minimum, that’s my ideal situation. So we need to be realistic with what the minimum is and really be okay with it when it happens. Heck, I would love to say celebrate it just like you would an ideal day! 

Systems, Systems, Systems! 

The best businesses I know have rock-solid systems in place to help with order and efficiency. Let’s learn from these businesses and put some systems in place for your time management. 

First up…do you know how you’re truly spending your time? If you and I were talking and I asked you “how much time do you spend doing laundry?” or “how much time do you spend on your side hustle?” or “how much time do you spend on Facebook?”, would you know the answers? Be real now, would you really know? The answer for me was no for a while but I decided to change that and it made a BIG impact. I started tracking my time and it sure helped me waste less time. You can use an electronic time tracker (I use Toggl) or you can write this down on a piece of paper, it doesn’t need to be fancy. Track your time and it will tell you how to use it better, I promise. 

The other system I would encourage you to use is planning your day. Whether it’s a paper or digital planner, you do you! But you need a system that works for you. One that I’ve seen work really well for most people is the 15 Minute Planner from Steph Crowder. I’ve learned a ton from her and actually hired her as my business coach last year. Check her out and use this quick 15 minute method to plan your week. 

If you’re looking for a way to help you stay on track during your day, I would highly recommend an electronic task management system. I personally use Asana every work day (but I put my personal stuff on there too). There are other systems such as Trello, Monday and you can set up tasks in Google. Find what works for you and run with it, don’t worry about what other people are using. Use what works for you! 

Make sure to check in with these systems as you move forward. Put a reminder on your calendar for 3 months from now to check in and see how these systems have helped you. You can only make progress and changes if you have a plan for evaluating them because it will encourage you to actually implement them. 

Automate Everything You Can 

Let’s talk about how cool it is that we live in a world where we can have groceries delivered to our house! For real, this is a game changer. I’ve tracked our families spending since we signed up for Shipt and we’ve actually saved money – even with tipping the incredible people who do the grocery shopping for us. I cannot rave about this enough but it’s not the only thing you can automate in your life. I would love to encourage you to look for ways you can automate things in your life and the amazing news is that they don’t all cost you a fortune! Some are more pricey than others but do what you can sister! 

Automation Ideas:

  • Grocery shopping through Shipt 
  • Dinner ideas from Hello Fresh or Freshly or any of the other companies out there! There are seriously so many incredible options. 
  • Vacuuming using Roomba. Yes, I know it’s a pricey vacuum but how much time will it save you if it runs once a week or every other day? Think about it. 
  • Deposit checks using your banking app. You don’t need to drive to the bank my friend, save the time and download the app. 
  • Bundle your errands in one trip. I know this isn’t automating but it will save you so much time. And bonus points if you can think ahead for your trip to town and only make right turns, no joke this saves time. 
  • Set your coffee maker timer. There’s no reason for you to have to do this manually if you have a timer on your coffee maker. Use what you paid extra for! 
  • Order pet food to be automatically delivered. Check with your vet, they have services for you! If your vet doesn’t have one, use Chewy. Set it and forget it. 

Give Yourself Grace 

You’re doing amazing things in this world. If you’re reading this article then you’re a driven woman who’s changing the world for the better, I 100% believe this. So give yourself some grace in this process dear friend. Remember that you’re doing the best you can with all that you have. 

Stay connected with other women who are doing amazing things so you can be supported and you can support other women. Keep going sister, you got this! 

Your cheerleader, 

Amanda McKinney 

About Amanda McKinney Amanda McKinney is a Marketing Coach with a passion for empowering yoga teachers to earn more money doing what they love. She does this through her podcast: Marketing Yoga With Confidence and Online Offerings. All of which focuses on building confidence and community with an extra dose of encouragement every step of the way. You can learn more from her on her podcast: Marketing Yoga with Confidence or on her website: But her favorite place to be is Instagram so follow her @amandamckinneyyoga