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How To Cope With Time Management Hurdles As A Spoonie

Time Management Tips For Those With Chronic Illnesses

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Time management as a work-at-home entrepreneur is a total bitch sometimes. Add in multiple chronic illnesses and you’ve got a perfect shit storm waiting to happen.

Time Management Presents Special Hurdles When Your A Spoonie

Before you look at me like I’ve lost my mind, spoonie is a term many people with chronic illness use to refer to themselves. You can read more about how the term came into practice.  You’ll also learn a bit more about how we have to manage our energy much differently than those who are not coping with these illnesses.

It’s this needed to manage our energy coupled with the sometimes unpredictable needs or flair-ups that makes managing our time a little harder.

I’m not complaining. I’ve gotten past the “woe-is-me” stage for the most part. I’m actually here to offer some tips for my spoonie brethren who don’t believe they can successfully run a business. Or for those of us who are struggling to get shit done on a daily.

My Top Time Management Tips For Spoonies

These will also work for people who are “normal”. (Side note: I don’t believe in normal. I think it’s an illusion we sell ourselves to fit in. I also believe fitting in is boring.)

Tip One: Know Thy Self

You have to know yourself very well. Make sure you know when you struggle energetically. Schedule very little during this time. That seems like a no-brainer, but–if you’re anything like me–you want to do all the things. This will lead to overscheduling and frustration. I’d love to see you skip that.

You’ll also want to know when your creativity is highest, when you do better at more logic-based activity, and so on. Some of this will also be based on the type of business you want to do and will change as you become able to outsource things.

Tip Two: Document Your Processes As You Go

This one will help you when you are ready to outsource. There are many ways to pay for outsourcing. And you want to be ready for it when the time comes.

You can use resources like Trello*, Asana, and ClickUp to build your processes.

The side benefit for managing your time is you’ll also be able to move through things more quickly if you set up cards with checklists for your processes so you can copy them over every time. You won’t miss any steps and you get shit done more quickly if you actually build out a process for the things you do on a regular basis!

Tip Three: Use Time Blocking Or Some Version Of It

Until I started using my version of time blocking, I was almost literally getting nothing done most days. Now I block out every business and personal activity. It’s a rough schedule to keep me on track. I also leave plenty of room for downtime. I never know when a migraine or my IBS will hit.

I encourage you to try your system for a week at a time and make adjustments as you go. Time management is as unique as the person doing it. Don’t get discouraged! It’s taken me six months to get anywhere close to having a system that really GSD.

Tip Four: Try Coworking Sessions At Least Once A Week

A coworking session is where you and at least one friend get together. You bring your own work and spend intervals getting shit done. Then you take a short break. Rinse and Repeat!

I do this weekly with a friend in Maryland via Zoom. We also are in a membership that does this together once a month.

I’ve found that I am getting more ahead in the detail work (think content planning and social media execution) than I ever thought possible! Plus I’ve made a new friend that is there for me every week to make sure we get this shit done!

You can also host these in real life! Go to a coffee shop, cafe, or any place with a nice atmosphere for working with a friend! Just remember to actually work!

These are a great time to do the next tip. You can also get to those little tasks that keep getting put off like email marketing, creating lead magnets, updating your accounting, checking various analytics, and so much more!

Tip 5: Batch Create Content

This is a game-changer! The first two weeks or so will suck ass. But once you get your flow going, it’s amazing to not have to worry about your content on a daily basis. Or whatever your schedule is.

You can batch create any type of content unless it’s in a particular place or time-dependent. This would be like at a wedding or other event. Or something like you are going on vacation. I think you get the idea.

This works for videos, blogs, podcasts, and other audio, and social media posts. You can even create certain types of story posts in advance.

I would also say to schedule everything you can. Just be sure that you will be able to respond to comments and engage in other ways during the “recommended time frame” around when your posts will be going out each day.

Time management becomes so much easier when you don’t have to add much–if any–content creation in most of the week. Unless you do this for clients–and I would still batch create theirs as well!

Want Some Tips On Batch Creating Content?

Wrapping It All Up

No matter what you’re coping with as a spoonie, you do have skills that the world needs. You are very capable of running your own business. Do it scared.

If you want to do your soul’s work, stop putting it off and making excuses. Just do the damned thing.

It will be hard, but you have people who will support you. The spoonie community alone is super supportive. And so is every entrepreneur I’ve met to date.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on time management

I hope that at least one of these tips helps you or someone you love. I’d love to hear about it, or even just your thoughts on this article in general. Drop a comment, an email, or a direct message.


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