I’m regularly asked how I get everything done. Between building my business, serving clients, showing up for my family, and taking good care of myself, it’s easy to see why people think I must have discovered some extra hours in the day. I talked last week about how I take action even when the conditions aren’t perfect; but there’s another crucial piece to this productivity puzzle that I’m sharing with you today.
I’m able to get everything done because I’m super clear about my priorities. I know what I want to do in my personal life and in my business. And, just as important, I know exactly what I won’t do. Things that don’t align with my priorities either get outsourced or fall by the wayside. I know what you might be thinking: “outsourcing work is way outside of what I can do right now.” But I’ll tell you in this episode how you can make it work for you, even if it seems beyond your current capability.
Listen in to this episode as I share why editing is my go-to tool for protecting my time and enjoying my life. I talk about the concept of designing your life and setting boundaries around your time so you can focus on the things that are truly important to you. And I’ll walk you through my three-step process for figuring out what you want to do and dropping the rest.
We can get so much more done than we think we can in a year, and let me just give you an example of what I accomplished last year. So, I built a house, I had a baby, and was actually on bedrest with the baby during my pregnancy, hosted six live events, I launched this podcast, I’ve served 300 clients, and I did all of that despite being on modified bedrest for three months out of the year, and also taking 10 weeks of maternity leave, and so how do I get all of that done?
Welcome to the Million Dollar Badass Podcast. I’m your host, Rachel Rodgers, wife, mother to four children, lover of Beyoncé, coffee drinker, and afro wearer, and I just happen to be the CEO of a seven-figure business. I am on a mission to help every woman I meet become a millionaire. If you want to make more money, you are in the right place.
Let’s get it going. People ask me all the time, Rachel, how do you get so much done with four children? And it’s true, in six months I’m able to accomplish what it would take most people three, to five years to accomplish, and it’s just a choice, right? It’s a decision to get things done. Last week, we talked about how important it is to take action even in imperfect conditions, and that is a big part of how I’m able to get so much done, but there is the other part of it, right?
Which is just straight up, how do you sit down, and find the time to actually go, and do the thing, right? Because taking action means doing the thing, right? If I want to buy a building, I’ve got to call the listing agent, I have to find out what I’m going to put the offer in for.
I have to do my research, I have to find a broker to represent me, right? There’s legwork involved. If you want to launch a podcast, you have to decide what is the theme going to be, what’s the name going to be? Maybe you have to go, and buy a domain. You probably have to go, and hire someone to edit your audio. If you want to start a business, you have to go incorporate it, right? And you have to decide, ‘Who is my ideal client going to be, what is my offer going to look like?’
Then you have to write the copy for the emails that will share news about your business with potential clients, right? So, there’s always legwork involved in the things that we want to accomplish, and we have to find the time to do that legwork. So, I want to talk to you about million-dollar productivity today.
And let me just give you an example of what I accomplished last year, and this is obviously the highlights. This is the high level, the big stuff. So, last year I built a house, we bought it, and built it, and obviously I didn’t build it with my own two hands, but I was very involved in the process, and it was time consuming choosing tile, deciding paint colors, and flooring, and all of those decisions were rather time consuming, and even just the process of getting a mortgage is also time consuming, lots of paperwork, and phone calls involved.
So I built a house, I had a baby, and was actually on bedrest with the baby during my pregnancy, hosted six live events. That is an enormous amount of live event doing, I have to say. Basically, we were doing an event every other month last year, which was a lot, especially because we hadn’t figured out a system for it just yet.
So that was challenging, but we did get it done. I launched this podcast, I’ve served 300 clients, and I did all of that despite being on modified bedrest for three months out of the year, and also taking 10 weeks of maternity leave. So, we can get so much more done than we think we can in a year. I think we overestimate what we can accomplish in a day, but we can get a lot done over the course of a year, or over the course of six months.
So, let me tell you a little bit about what I did so far this year. So this year, I’ve hosted two live events, I wrote my book proposal, I brought on four, full time employees, I rebuilt my member site, and am in the process of buying a building for my company. So, that’s what’s happened so far in the first four months of 2019, and that is a lot of stuff, right?
And it’s big stuff, and you know, obviously we’re serving clients every day, I’m recording this podcast every week, we’re writing newsletters, articles for you guys every week. So, that regular cadence of business, and getting things done also happens, right? And the regular cadence of getting up every day, taking care of my family, spending time with my family, that happens too.
So, how do we find the time to do it all, right? You would think that I don’t get to spend any time with my children with that list of things that I just mentioned, and you’d be wrong. I spend the early mornings, and afternoons, and evenings, and most weekends hanging out with my family. I fit in three Pilates sessions a week, a weekly hair appointment, and lots of time in my bathtub, right? And I also manage to plan my kids’ birthday parties, I go on school trips, I host class parties at their school.
I went to the mom’s night out for first grade moms last week, so I show up to that stuff also, I’m not just working on my business all the time, I’m also showing up for my family, and so how do I get all of that done? The key is editing. That is the key to your million-dollar productivity, editing, okay? Lots, and lots of editing.
You have to decide what’s important to do, and drop everything else, okay? You have to decide what’s important to you, and drop everything else, and not just important to society, and not what’s important to your mom, and not what’s important to just your clients, or just your children, or just your spouse, right? You’ve got to decide what is important to you. You have to set your own priorities, and don’t take on society’s priorities, right?
Society’s priorities may not be your own, okay? Maybe society’s priorities say that you have to host dinner parties on a regular basis, and you have to cook an elaborate meal, and get out the special China, and create dinner parties for business colleagues, or family friends on a regular basis. No, you don’t. You do not have to do that. Society may say you have to show up for your sister’s wedding in a really big way, that you have to help plan it all, that you have to be involved in every single detail. That is something that I did, and I want my time back.
No, I mean, some of that time, it was bonding with my sister, right? And it was a different phase in my life where I didn’t have children, so that was totally doable back then, but today I’d be like, ‘Why aren’t we hiring a planner?’ You know, like, ‘Why are we doing this ourselves?’ So, you have to not let society, and your family, and your friends, and your work determine what’s important to you.
You have to decide what’s important to you, and you have to prioritize it, and you literally have to decide to drop everything else. For example, I am not a woman that sends thank you cards, okay? I just decided that that’s something I’m not doing, and I’ve had friends who have gasped when I said that, and been like, ‘Oh, how could you not send a thank you card? Someone took the time out to do something nice for you, and you’re not going to send a thank you card.’
And I’m like, ‘Listen, I will express gratitude, but what I won’t be doing is writing a card, and putting it in an envelope, and putting it in the mail, I’m just gonna not gonna do that.’ So, if you send me something, if you do something nice to me, I’ll probably send you a thank you text. You may get possibly, not likely, a thank you email, right? But I’m not going to send a thank you card. That’s just one of the things that I’ve decided it’s not important enough for me to take the time out of what is really important to do it, so I’m just not going to do it out of societal obligation, you know? And you know what? If you think I’m a heathen, I’m okay with that. I’m totally okay with that.
There is a lot of stuff that I won’t do, because I have done a lot of this editing. Remember people used to use the phrase, ‘Lifestyle design’? That’s essentially what I’m talking about here. Design your life with intention, ’cause I think we just wake up every day, check our email, our kids start demanding things, our clients are demanding things over email, our bosses, right? If you’re working a nine, to five, and they’re demanding things, and we just start to respond to everyone’s demands, and that is a shitty way to live, I gotta tell you.
It’s not a fun way to wake up in the morning. This is your life. You only get one of them as far as I know. Maybe you get multiple, and we just don’t have the proof, right? We don’t have the evidence, but as far as we know, we get one, so let’s show up to it the way that we want to show up to it, and let’s do what’s important to us, and not what’s important to everybody else.
Do not let everyone else in the world pull you in a thousand different directions every day, and none of them, none of those directions are the direction that you actually want to be moving in. I have to say, the number one thing getting in the way of women building wealth is a lack of boundaries, and you know, being afraid to have hard conversations, and tell people, ‘No, I’m not doing that. No, I am not doing that.’ Protect your life. Create the life that you want by saying, ‘No, no’, okay?
It is a powerful word. It is a full sentence. You do not have to feed the needs of the world at the expense of yourself, and I know that there are a lot of women doing that, and we do it in the name of our children, we do it in the name of our work, we do it in the name of making money, we do it in the name of keeping our spouses happy. We have a thousand reasons why we have to do everything under the sun, and I just say, ‘No’.
I just reject the notion that because I’m a woman, I have to do everything in the household, I have to do everything outside of the household, just no, I am not doing it. The answer is no, okay? So, start using the word no, and there is a great article that is on my Hello Seven blog right now all about how to have confrontations, how to have difficult conversations.
This is a really important tool that all of us women need, because we need boundaries, and we need to enforce them if we are ever going to reach our own goals, okay? And if you’re listening to this podcast, your goal is likely building wealth, right? Becoming a millionaire.
Well, I gotta tell you, you’re not going to become a millionaire by executing everyone else’s agenda every day. You have got to edit your life. You have to decide what’s important, and front load the things that are important to you. Pilates is sacred. I do Pilates in the morning three times a week, I’m actually going to go do Pilates right after I’m done recording this podcast, and I don’t reschedule it, I don’t cancel it. I don’t alter it, right? Unless I want to.
A couple of weeks ago, my baby boy was sick, and I wanted to stay home, and nurse him, so I decided to cancel it for that week, right? But that was my decision. My husband may have something going on, or the children may have a late start for school, and that could mess with it, and I’m just like, ‘No, that’s not a good enough reason.’
I’m not canceling Pilates for my children, or my clients in most cases, okay? Obviously if something’s seriously urgent, and seriously important, then I will make that decision, but I’m not going to regularly let people shove things that are really important to my quality of life, and self-care off of my calendar on a regular basis, to replace it with what they want on there, and that’s the point that I’m trying to make, okay?
So, let’s talk about editing. Let’s dig into this a little bit. There’s a lot of shit that I don’t do, and I recommend that you make a list of things that you aren’t going to do, okay? So here’s a short list: I don’t run errands. I don’t buy birthday gifts. I don’t send cards. I don’t cook for my children. I don’t do laundry. I don’t plan elaborate vacations. I don’t drive my kids to, and from school most days. I don’t travel for holidays, right?
So, that’s just a short list, just an example of things that I am not going to do, okay? So when it comes to errands, we use Amazon, my husband will run errands, and we have some help, and we’ll talk about help in a minute. I don’t buy birthday gifts, so I actually have a personal assistant who I say, ‘Hey, such, and such’ birthday’s coming up, here’s what I had in mind to get them as a gift. Could you do some research, find it, send it out, throw a card in’, and she will take care of it.
Our Christmas cards that went out, it was because of my personal assistant. I don’t cook for my children, and this does not make me a bad mom. My parenting is not reliant on whether I cooked the vegetables, or somebody else cooked the vegetables. The point is they got the vegetables in them, they’re fed, okay? So, I separate the labor related to parenting from the parenting related to parenting.
I don’t see them as one, and the same, and honestly too, I would rather use my time to spend quality time with my children, to talk to them, to read to them. We watched MasterChef Junior together this weekend, we went to this community garden, and made seed art, and saw chickens, and talked about plants, and mapped out our garden that we’re going to create together.
So, those things are more important to me and you know what? I bought something for them to eat. I’d rather purchase it, let somebody else cook it, okay? My husband prepares a lot of their meals, but I’m not doing all of that. I just don’t want to, and I used to love to cook. I used to love to bake, but I’m in a phase in my life where I don’t have time for that right now, and it’s not a priority.
I don’t plan elaborate vacations. So you know, I want to take my children to these far-flung places, but I realize there’s three of them, they’re small. Traveling on airplanes is really hard on them, and so we’ve decided, ‘Hey, we go to Charleston, we go to the beach, and we’re going to spend two weeks there this summer, and we’re going to have a blast, and no one’s going to have to get on a plane. We’re going to drive for four, and a half hours, and be in a beautiful, amazing, stunning place to go on vacation.’
I’m not going to take them to Italy right now. I have taken them to France in the past, we’ve been to California, we’ve been to some places, but I’m not going to take them all over the world just because first of all, it’s exhausting. Planning the vacation is too much work, and I just don’t think it’s a priority right now in this phase of life that we’re in, right?
So, the same thing with traveling for holidays. It sounds like a nightmare. I don’t want to do it. So, we ask our family to come to us. Luckily we have a big ass house, right, that can house everybody, and I even outsourced the entire Thanksgiving meal last year, and I have to tell you as a black woman, this is not something that is generally acceptable in my culture, to outsource Thanksgiving, but we did it.
We found an amazing, black-owned soul food restaurant that does catering. We went there just to order the turkey from them, ’cause we were going to order a fried turkey from them, and as we were standing there looking at the menu, and about to give our order, my husband’s like, ‘Let’s just outsource this whole deal.
You don’t want to cook, you’re busy.’ You know, we’ve got a young baby, and two young children, and a teenager who’s off doing her thing at this point, so she doesn’t require as much care anymore. Sorry, I say teenage, she’s 19, teenager slash adult, but anyway, he’s like, ‘You don’t want to cook, let’s just outsource the whole thing’, and I’m like, ‘Oh, can we?’ He’s like, ‘Of course we can’, you know? So I’m like, ‘Yes, let’s do it’, and we did, and it was amazing, and no one had to work so hard, right? I made cranberry sauce, and I think that was it. I think literally I made cranberry sauce, and that was it. Oh, and I think I did some spiced wine, okay?
And that’s how we did Thanksgiving, but anyway, you’ve got to just decide in your personal life what’s important to you, what’s important to your children, okay? My kids, they had a special day, grandparents’ day at my kid’s school last week, I was there, okay? I will be there, no problem. I’m going on a fishing trip with my daughter’s class in a couple of weeks, it’s going to be a blast.
I went to a play with my son in his class, you know? And so I show up for the things that are really important. I know their birthday parties are important, and that’s not the kind of thing that I would outsource, because I really like to do it myself, because I just know what my kids want, and I like to make the decisions, and so those are things where that’s my domain, and I’m going to handle that, and I’m not going to outsource it, ’cause I don’t want to, right?
It’s important to them, and I want to take care of it. When they have special things at school, I’m the one choosing what’s going to go in their little goodie bags, and I’m packing it, you know? So, there are those things that I really prioritize that are important to me in my personal life, and there’s those things that I’m outsourcing.
I haven’t touched laundry, literally, probably in seven years. Since my daughter was born, I haven’t touched laundry, okay? Either my husband does it, or we’ve sent it out, and now we have a nanny, because we have our young baby, and we just got a nanny guys. We have not had a nanny all these years. We just got a nanny last year, and now she takes care of the laundry, but you know, I’ve just decided that I cannot do all of these things, and also build a business, and also be present with my children, and my husband.
So, you’ve just gotta say no, that is the first most important step, and then also decide what’s important to you, right? Create that list, decide what your priorities are, and then once you’ve decided them, all the things that have to get done that aren’t priorities for you, those are the things that you want to start outsourcing, and maybe you’re not in a place to outsource every single thing right now, but you can definitely start outsourcing, okay?
And before we dive into that, let’s talk a little bit about business, and the stuff that I don’t do there. I pretty much don’t do anything in my business that is not in my wheelhouse. If it’s not my strength, if it’s not the best way that I show up, I’d rather hire somebody else where it is the best way that they show up, and have them do it.
Okay? I don’t create new offers every five minutes. I don’t do enormous launches that require an army of human beings, and $100,000 in ad spend. I don’t change the direction of my business on a regular basis, ’cause I’m telling you every time you do that, it creates all kinds of additional work.
You know how you’ll have that random client come in that seems amazing, but takes you out of your normal programs, and packages, and how you usually deliver your services, and you’re like, ‘Oh, this seems amazing, and exciting, I’m going to do it’, and then before you know it, it’s a nightmare, because it seemed like a lot of money at the time, but when you think about the amount of work involved that is not systematized in your business to take that client, it’s actually not very profitable, and then you regret it.
I say no to those clients, okay? I don’t take those clients on. I don’t take on things that are outside of my programming for a reason, because my business is systematized, I’ve got a team of people to help me deliver it, and if I do something outside of that, that disrupts the whole process, okay? And this is the same thing that I’m saying.
If you’ve got a system for how you do your personal life as well, and if you start saying yes to all kinds of crap that you don’t want to do, that is complicated, and that disrupts your process, then it not only takes the time to do the thing, but then it’s the time of thinking about, ‘How am I going to get this done’, and ‘I have this other thing’, and the time you spend being in anxiety, because you have too many commitments.
So, learning to say no both in your personal life, and in your business obviously is key, right? Super, super, super important, and really hiring as much help as you can afford, and I’m going to talk to you a little bit about that, ’cause hiring help is not just for rich people, okay?
So if you think it is, it is not, all right? It’s about really recognizing that you can’t do it alone, and it’s about stepping into leadership, right? And as women, we are leaders, we need to be leaders, and part of that is leading other people, okay? And part of the way that we lead other people is by hiring them, and delegating to them, and managing that person. Those are some leadership skills that you really can’t learn any other way unless you’re managing another human being, you know? And not being an asshole about it.
Okay? So, outsourcing is very important. So, here’s what I recommend that you do. Hire a personal assistant. If you have no help at home, or in your business, the number one thing to do right now is hire a personal assistant, and again, this is not just for rich people, you can hire a personal assistant for anywhere from 15, to $20 an hour depending on your market, right? Depending on what city you live in, and that person will come, and they’ll take your laundry, and drop it off at a laundry service, or take care of it themselves.
They’ll help you plan your kid’s birthday party. They will prepare meals. One of the things that we did was we used to get those HelloFresh boxes, and then I would have my nanny prepare it, right? So, the food shows up with the recipe, and everything that we need is in the box to make the meal, and then the nanny would take care of it, okay?
So, meal prep, helping you with picking up, or taking your kids to school, helping you with running errands, sending cards out to clients, sending cards out to friends, handling some of the management of events including personal events, and business events, managing your inbox, managing your schedule. All of these things are things that are personal assistant can do.
My personal assistant will actually respond to emails on my behalf. I would just let her take it, and run with it, right? Make sure the people that need information are getting the information that they need, it’s super important to just outsource those things that are really important to get done, but that eat up a lot of your time, and you don’t have to be the one doing it, okay? And you can hire a personal assistant literally for five hours a week, and it will change your life.
Do you hear me? It will absolutely change your life, and you know, at $20 an hour, that’s $100 a week, and I bet most of you who are listening to this podcast can afford $100 a week, and if you can’t, outsource two hours a week, okay? Outsource just what you can, and I bet you, you will see so much more getting done, and the thing with hiring help too is that it forces you to prioritize what’s important, right?
It forces you to say, ‘Okay, what do you want to have this person do?’, and ‘What are you going to do?’, and what’s just going in the no pile, and just not getting done, ’cause it’s just not worth it, right? I bet there are a lot of business owners out there who are doing all kinds of stuff that doesn’t bring in clients, that doesn’t serve current clients, that doesn’t expand your brand in any way, and yet you’re doing it every day, or every week, right?
You have to start cutting those things from your list, editing. Edit, edit, edit, okay? So, delegating is really going to highlight that, and that’s one of the reasons why you should absolutely hire a personal assistant. You don’t have to have $100,000 business, you don’t have to be making a million dollars to have a personal assistant, everybody needs one.
I remember there was a great video on Instagram from a rapper who said, ‘I have a personal assistant, because I’m trying to get a music deal, a recording deal, and I’m trying to accomplish big things, and writing music, and making connections, and networking, and showing up to the places where there’s opportunity for me, and doing shows, right? So, I can’t also be handling dry cleaning, and managing all the scheduling that needs to happen.’
And so he outsources, and you can do the same. You don’t have to be, and he’s not a big rapper. This is an up, and coming, somebody who’s working on becoming a rapper, okay? So, you don’t have to be someone big, and famous, and wealthy to have a personal assistant. Every single woman needs a wife who is as reliable as they are, okay? That’s what you need.
I don’t care if you’re married, I don’t care if you have children, you need a wife, and you need a reliable wife, and that is going to come in the form of your personal assistant, okay? So if you go to Mdbshow.com, you can download my free personal assistant job description, and instructions, okay? So, you can go to Mdbshow.com, and download that, and it’ll give you the job description, post it on Craigslist, find somebody amazing who will take some stuff off of your plate woman, ’cause you cannot do it all alone.
All right? I know a single mom with a part time nanny, I have clients who are single, have no children, and are not making a lot of money, but do have a personal assistant, and are outsourcing some of the things on their to-do list, okay? So, it’s not just for certain types of people, you can make that decision too.
So, if you want to have million-dollar level productivity, you’ve got to design your life. You have to figure out what’s important to you, and drop the rest. Hate going to baby showers, and house warmings? Don’t go, right? Send a gift instead, and be done with it, all right?
For example, I nurse my son, so I don’t change diapers. I have changed very few of his diapers. Sometimes, I do need to change them, but it’s pretty rare, and it’s when my husband isn’t around, ’cause I pretty much do not change diapers, because I’m nursing.
I’m not doing it all, okay? I am not that woman, and you don’t have to be either. So again, to have million-dollar productivity, number one, you have to decide what is most important to you. Start to design your life. Make a list of the things that you really want to do every day, and make a list of things that you don’t want to do, okay?
And then number two, ask for lots of help. Paid help, and unpaid help, right? Ask your spouse, ask your mom, ask your sister, ask your children to help out, all right? So that list of things that you don’t want to do, ask some of them if they can take some of that stuff off of your plate, and if they can’t, hire a personal assistant to help you, and to take some of that stuff off of your plate.
And then of course, number three, set boundaries. Decide the things that you will not do. Okay? I work, I bring in the income for our family, so I’m not touching laundry, or food prep, that’s the deal, you know? And it’s not me saying in a bitchy way, ‘I’m not doing that’, right? It’s not that kind of thing.
This happens in the form of a conversation with my husband where we talk about what he doesn’t want to do, and what I don’t want to do, and we find a way to make it work, and if there’s things that have to get done that neither of us want to do, we outsource it, okay? So that’s the key, but this is the key to your productivity. This is the key to your future wealth, right? You’ve got to set boundaries around your time, and if you don’t, you will see that you are not going to become a millionaire.
You are not going to be able to build wealth, you’re not going to ever be able to focus, because you’re going to be so anxiety ridden being pulled in a thousand different directions, okay? So shift that, decide what’s important to you, do only those things, cut the rest.
Who cares what society says you should do as a wife, as a mother, as a business woman, as an employee, as a whatever you’re doing in your life, right? Forget about what society says. Decide what you think is important, and focus on that. That is how you get million-dollar productivity, and that is how you make a million dollars. I hope you enjoyed this episode. Don’t forget, download my free personal assistant job description at Mdbshow.com.