Go beyond time management and OWN YOUR TIME. Learn how with our guest, Alejandra Marqués.
ABOUT TOGETHER DIGITAL
We are a national community of influential women in digital – who choose to share their knowledge, power, and purpose by coming together to make meaningful connections and deeper conversations happen so we all move forward, faster.
Join the movement.
ABOUT THE LOUNGE
Looking for more purpose, fulfillment, and professional and personal development?
Be a part of our LIVE podcast audience and end your week with Together Digital's Chief Empowerment Officer, Amy Vaughan as she hosts authentic conversations with women in digital who wish to see change or be the change within their industry.
Ever wondered why you're constantly battling the clock, despite having a well-managed schedule? Well, we sat down with Alejandra Marqués - a productivity and business specialist, strategist, best-selling author, and international speaker to gain her insights about not just managing, but owning your time. Alejandra unpacks her unique, flexible, and personalized time protocol, showing us how to maximize productivity and achieve that elusive work-life balance by truly owning our time.
THIS WEEK'S TOPIC:
As Alejandra points out, owning your time also means developing a mindset, where you're in control, not the clock. She shares tips on breaking free from damaging multitasking habits, embracing the Pomodoro method, and limiting your to-do list to a manageable three tasks. She also paints a vivid picture of the impact of energy styles on time management, emphasizing the importance of avoiding overbooking, breaking tasks into chunks, and taking time to recharge. We also venture into the often overlooked territory of setting boundaries and the power of saying no, reminding us that every yes also represents a no to something else.
The conversation takes an intriguing turn as we explore Alejandra's concept of “evolution” in her time protocol and the need to continuously expand our comfort zones. Alejandra also enlightens us on the significance of defining success on our own terms and being prepared for life's inevitable changes. She leaves us with a powerful reminder to reclaim our time and prioritize self-care, truly a conversation that will transform the way you view and use your time. So, tune in to redefine your relationship with time and take control of your life.
Alejandra’s 20min free TIME Audit
Sponsored by: COhatch
Join Together Digital Today and get 30% Off A CoHatch Membership.
COhatch is a new kind of shared work, social, and family space built on community. Members get access to workspace, amenities like rock walls and sports simulators, and more to live a fully integrated life that balances work, family, well-being, community, and giving back. COhatch has 31 locations open or under construction nationwide throughout Ohio, Indiana, Florida, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Georgia, and Tennessee.
Welcome to our weekly Power Lounge, your place to hear authentic conversations from those who have power to share. My name is Amy Vaughn and I am the owner and Chief Empowerment Officer of Together Digital, a diverse and collaborative community of women who work in digital and choose to share their knowledge, power and connections. Join the movement at wwwtogetherindigitalcom. Let's get started. We're here today to go beyond time management to owning your time with Alejandra Marquez. Alejandra is a productivity and business specialist and strategist, best-selling author and international speaker. She leads teams to increase their productivity, efficiency and performance and empowers ambitious entrepreneurs to achieve their goals without burning out, designs time management systems that suit their needs, has work-life balance and creates more time for the things that matter most to them. With her unique time protocol, she is a sought-after expert. Her work has been featured in Entrepreneur Inc magazine, yahoo Finance, abc, cbs, nbc, fox CW, medium Authority Magazine and Thrive Global, and much more, and now Together Digital. Alejandra, I'm so glad that you're here today. This is such a passion point for me. When other people owned my time and I worked for others, time management wasn't something that was on my mind. As soon as I became a business owner, I realized how important it was so if you're listening as an entrepreneur or somebody who works for somebody else, I have to tell you you all need to get on this bandwagon of understanding how to own your time and reclaim it. I'm so glad that you're here. Thank you so much, alejandra.Speaker 2:
Thank you for inviting me and for having me here, and couldn't agree more. I felt like I've been having this conversation over and over again. We are not thought this in high school or in college, and you only start caring about it when you become an entrepreneur or a business owner, because otherwise you don't feel like you can actually do something about it. That's why I really like talking about owning it and not just managing it. I'm really excited to have this talk today with you.Speaker 1:
Alejandra, yes same. What exactly led you to become a productivity and business strategy? What motivated you to create the time protocol?Speaker 2:
Alejandra, I realized that that thing that a lot of people were always asking me is how do I manage to do it all? How do I manage to work and study and be with my family? To paint a little picture in here when I was in college, I was studying for both degrees at the same time, while working in two to three part time jobs and working also for my parents and having a long-term relationship. I've been with my boyfriend now for 18 years, while also having hobbies, while learning my fifth and sixth language. So, yes, people was like how are you managing everything, how are you doing and how you're saying, how you're not losing your mind with everything that you're doing? So I started reflecting about that and I realized that a lot of people needed this, and the more I talked with people, I was like, okay, yes, time management is something that for me, it was natural. I'm not going to lie you. For me, it was something that I really enjoyed doing planning, goal setting, organizing my time the most effective way. For me it was fun, like I had really fun with that, but I was kind of playing Tetris with it, like if you look at my calendar at that time, it was one thing in top of another and changing here and moving the piece like it was literally Tetris, and I kept thinking about how can I make it more easy for people to understand and something that works for them Because that's one of the biggest things that I feel that we really need to understand is what works for me might not work for you 100%. For you? I might hate it. So how can I create something that's flexible and that serves you? And that's how I came with the time protocol. Instead of teaching you very rigid strategies, I created a protocol, a four step formula where each pillar it's designed in a way that everything is going to base foundation. It's everything going to be around you and your lifestyle and what works for you. So that's how everything started and again, I wanted to make it easy and affordable for everything. We want to start small but create a huge impact in their life. So, keeping it simple, four steps. Yes, inside each one of the pillars you have more things, but where are the four main things that people need to focus on? And that's how I created the time protocol.Speaker 1:
All right, Alejandra, let's get to the next question. Your backstory and creating the time protocol and the inspiration that led to it, like I said, is really reminiscent of what it takes sometimes to establish and create. You find a need and then you create a process and a protocol for it, and it just shows how that can be so successfully implemented. So one thank you for being an inspiration to either existing or potential entrepreneurs out there who are listening. But let's talk a little bit more about this idea of owning your time, Regardless of whether you're an entrepreneur or not. How does it benefit individuals that are seeking a better work-life balance to have this sense of owning their time.Speaker 2:
I really love this because that's one of the biggest things that I love sharing with people and, as I say, it goes truly beyond managing it and it becomes owning it, and I decided this for many reasons. So one of the things is that I feel like a lot of people feel resistance with the word management. It's like I'm not good at managing people, I'm not good at managing things, I'm not good at time management. So you already kind of feel a resistance in there and it feels like you're adding another task or another responsibility you need to handle. So it feels it feels heavy and for me, again, time is fun, like it allows me to do absolutely everything that I want when I want it and how I want it. So for me it felt like okay, what's that word? That for me felt like basically what I want more people to feel, and that was that part of that empowerment and giving back power to you in a way that you feel like you can do everything you want with your time. I know that when we work in corporate it doesn't feel that much that way, but you made the decision to go there. Only you need to quit, like absolutely not, but it's. It's that decision is that time trade that you're making in exchange for well, you're using your skills. In there, you're getting money. The same happened when you're an entrepreneur, like you're also trading your time for the things that you're doing, and you're trading it every single day. So, when it comes to owning it, it's more to feel again that empowerment. One of the things that I love always saying is, when I look at my calendar, I can totally tell you that I love it. It feels fun, it feels like I'm taking care of my business, that I'm taking care of myself, my family. A lot of space for creativity, a lot of space for learning which is one of the biggest things that I encourage everyone to have and blank spaces, because life happens and if you don't have that flexibility in there, you will not be able to feel like you can do something about something happens. You always feel like you're reacting to it. It's like, oh my God, how can I do it right now? I wasn't foreseeing this. This is completely derailing my schedule. But when you have some room for flexibility, when you truly know how to own your time and not own and not just managing it, you will just act on it. It's like, okay, life happened, this is happening. What can I do? What can I do? What can I change? How can I just start moving things around and not feeling anxious or overwhelmed with it? So that, for me, was that feeling of owning it and I highly encourage anyone listening to it. Just by shifting your minds around it and start stop thinking about managing it Again. It feels heavy, it feels like you're taking care of something. To this own in it. You are already feeling like I'm ready, I have this, I can do this. So that little shift that you can do, just with the language, it will totally influence the way you feel about your time.Speaker 1:
Okay, I think that makes sense. I think mindset is a very important aspect of how we mold and shape our lives in our day to day. I'm a huge believer in that, and I think a couple of points that you made that make a lot of sense are managing your time versus owning it, and creating the space for the kind of life and the things that you want versus never having time, which is another thing. I feel like I hear a lot of people say, well, I just don't have time, and it's like no, we all have time. It's just what do you make time for? What are you intentional about doing? And then also another thing that Accordia struck as you were speaking was this idea of productivity. I think, as women, we think that our productivity is equal to our value If we're not busy like pants on fire, like everything's burning down. Busy isn't a badge of honor. I think that there is something to understanding, having and and portraying and modeling, I guess, is the word I'm looking for this ability to have balance and time in your life, to be quote unquote person who does a lot of things but you're not burnt out, you're not overly burdened and busy because of mindset shifts like these. So I kind of want that for everybody who's listening today, to have that balance and to have that mindset shift of not just feeling like your calendar owns you, but you own it in your time. So let's talk about that some more. Like this idea of ownership and time management. What are some steps and strategies that our listeners could start to take to feel that sense of ownership?Speaker 2:
Well, the first thing, as I said, is just start by changing your mindset around it. And actually, if you could read what I have in here, that little frame, it says change your words, change your thoughts and change your world. That's where everything starts. Like you start changing your language around your time. Stop saying that you don't have it, stop saying that it's never enough. We all have the same 24 hours, as you just mentioned, how you can create more time for things that actually matter the most to you. So, starting with that mindset shift and start embracing the idea that you do have time. And actually there are studies that shows that there were two different groups of people and they had like the same amount of time, the same amount of responsibilities. For those who believe they had more time, they were happier.Speaker 1:
So it's just a perception is the mindset, is how you feel about it. So I'm not telling you that I have less responsibilities than you or that you have less responsibilities than me. It's just how you perceive it that really influenced the way you feel and the way you will start act upon it Like you will start behaving according to that. So changing your mindset is one of the biggest things. The second thing is increase awareness. Start increasing awareness, because you cannot change what you don't know. So if you right now want to pivot from I'm not good at time management to I own my time, you need to start gaining awareness of, okay, how your life look like right now, how your days look like. Do you normally plan? So just if you, every time you look at your calendar, how often you get distracted, like there are so many things that you can do to start recognizing what's going on, and that's actually why I, when I created the time protocol. The first pillar is tracking, is gaining that awareness and analyzing what's going on in your life, because that's the only way that you can start making the change and create the lifestyle that you desire.Speaker 1:
I love that. Yeah, T for tracking makes a lot of sense. As you're talking, I'm like being intentional about where your time is going. I think some of us don't realize how much time we kind of almost waste on certain things that don't serve us well. And when you kind of start to look at those things and I mean maybe there are things that serve you well that you do need more time on, but that's where you look at, okay, where can I delegate, when can I spend less time doomscrolling on social media or trolling people's podcast recordings, you know, and find more ways to do things that are more productive and beneficial to me as a person, to my family or to the greater good. I love that tracking. I think awareness is absolutely the key. It is that it is the light that you can shed on your life to kind of illuminate those shadowy places that we kind of tend to just lose time and not even realize we're losing it. I love that.Speaker 2:
Yes, and another thing that I wanted to touch on here and you mentioned it before is like stop wearing that batch of honor. Yes, like stop praising and telling everyone that you're busy all the time, because if you say you're busy, it feels like you have a successful business. No, stop, it's not like that. You can thrive both in your professional and personal life without burning out, without being busy, and that's one of the things that I work when it comes to the mindset is stop preaching the go, go, go mindset. Yes, you need to take action. I'm not telling you to just sit in here and wait for things to happen. You need to take action. You need to do things, but you also need time for breaks and you need to have time to yourself and for your family and to learn. Every time you say you're busy, like you're reinforcing that idea to yourself. Every time you say you don't have time, you're reinforcing that idea. So the more that you keep preaching about it, the more you wear that batch of honor and I will say I stated it a lot in the past and another batch of honor that I feel a lot of entrepreneurs wear and it's hurting your productivity so much multitasking. Yes, that's really hurting your productivity. So get rid of those two badges. You don't need them.Speaker 1:
Yes, I 100% agree. I was just on a panel recently for a group of women talking about entrepreneurship and the tipping point for female founders and this whole idea of hustle culture, especially within the startup ecosystems. It's just so. It's toxic. Really, it's not helpful. I think the reason why many of us start the whole process of the entrepreneurial journey is because we want to change up the systems and the work environments, because the ones that we're in aren't serving us. Claire was just asking from our live listening audience she missed the comment Are you saying that you are pro multitasking or not? We are saying no, no.Speaker 2:
I'm saying, even if you think multitasking is beneficial for you, there are many studies and I won't dive deep into it, but there are many studies that actually shows that multitasking hurt your productivity. It decreases it by 40%. So I used to say I was a great multitasker. I used to say I was busy all the time, but the more that I learned about productivity and efficiency and especially balance, the more I realized that I don't need to wear those things because they're actually bad for me. So if I really want to increase my productivity, the number one thing that I do is every time that I catch myself multitasking, because sometimes it's a whole habit. So when I catch myself, it's like okay, no, you're completely wasting your time in here. You cannot multitask, don't go there. And that's one of the exercises that I feel like everybody can do right now. If you were to take one thing out of these podcasts right now every time you catch yourself multitasking, just remind yourself that it decreases your productivity by 40%.Speaker 1:
Yeah, here, hot tip, I'll share one of my favorites I am guilty of. I think multitasking stems a lot from me checking my inbox because I see an email and I'm like, oh, gotta take care of that right now and I use it as almost as a to-do list, and then I'll get caught in the swirl of what is my email and my desire, which will never be inbox zero, and in the meantime, I'm not focusing on the particular task at hand, I'm not doing any deep work. So I have started scheduling when I will check my emails throughout the day and what I have found is that, while that sounds scary to some people, I know, I promise you nobody is going to die. If they need you that badly, they can call you, they can text you, they can slack you, so, but I only check my emails three times a day and what it does is it gives me time to be intentional about those emails that I'm reading and that I'm answering, because I also found, because of my bad multitasking, I was half ass answering my emails. I was missing important emails, and it wasn't until I started scheduling my time to check my emails that I was like, oh, I'm multitasking so much less because I'm not letting that little extra window and that alert I even turned off the ding allowed me to sort of you know, stop easily being like that's the shiny object is email for me. So find your shiny object, the thing that causes you to multitask, and maybe find a way to kind of bury it for at least a certain portion of your day so that you can. You can't truly focus, but I agree, just being aware and acknowledging when you're multitasking and bringing yourself back is really great. And I'm sure you've spoken about the Pomodoro method too. I'm a lot of us here together digital work fans of Pomodoro, and that's just where you work on something deep, work for 25 minutes and then take a five minute break. Because, guess what? You can get a lot done in 25 minutes when you're focused and you and then you get a five minute break. It's like it's such an easy digestible amount of time in order to focus on something. I have found that tremendously helpful as well. It's one of my favorite tools, for sure. It's great because I think our brains are that way right. I mean, I think some of us can sit. I know my husband. He's a researcher. He could sit and work for hours and hours and hours and, honestly, the house can blow away and he wouldn't even notice because he can stay. That focused me, on the other hand. You know I need those every 25 minutes, those five minutes break, so I can context shift and then kind of get back to what I need to get back to. But you're right, there is a lot of science behind the fact that we should not be multitasking, all right, so you know, speaking of multitasking because we do we feel like we have a lot on our to-do list each day. Many of us tend to feel pretty overwhelmed by our responsibilities that we have coming our way. What advice do you have for those folks? How can they even begin their journey towards time mastery and productivity if they just are kind of already feeling, like you said, it's Tetris on their calendar? It's already too much.Speaker 2:
With this, I feel like, yes, there are 100 of things that we need to do, especially as entrepreneur, and let's not mention, if you're like a solopreneur, there are thousands of things that you need to take care of in your business and outside your business. But one of the things that I realize a lot not only me, but in my clients is that every time that you do, every time you realize and you make up to do list, it's an endless to-do list. So you start writing all the things that come to your mind and you have it in there and every single day you're looking at them and even if you cross one or two there, you still have like a hundred of things to do list and you're like, oh shit, we have to do all these things and you get that anxiety. You get over one very easy. Of course. You have a thousand of things in there every single day and you're looking at them. So one of the biggest advice that I always give is get rid of to-do list. Seriously, they are not helping you right now. I do want you to brain-dump your thoughts, because if you keep everything in here, you will completely forget about half of it. Now for brain-dump list if you have a project management software like that's one of the best place you can put it on, but then on your day-to-day and your daily basis, have only three main things to focus on, three main things. Focus on those, get them done. And if you have extra time because you use the Pomodoro, you use time blocking, and you got them done, then you can go to that project management list, to that brain dump list, and see what else you want to work on. But just focusing on those three main things really changed the perspective and how you feel during the day, because if you only have three things and you get the three done, you feel so accomplished and you're not thinking about the hundreds of things that you still have to do. You still have to do it, but you're not seeing it every single day. You're prioritizing the right things, and one of the tools that I also feel that helps a lot with it is this. This is one of the ones that I use the most it's time blocking. Yes, so when you time block, you allocate time for those priorities so that you don't feel like, oh no, I won't have time for all those three. No, start blocking chunks of time and focus on one thing at a time, then use the Pomodoro, have those breaks and you will have so much sense of what you're doing, of the progress you're making, and also sometimes you will start realizing like there were so many things on that to do list that were not actually things that you needed to do. Maybe you needed to delegate it, automate it or just delete it. Sometimes it's like very random thoughts that you're like oh, I need to take care of this, like I need to move my mic right now five centimeters just so you can hear me better. Like you know, there are some things that sometimes you just put in there that are just creating noise. So what are your priorities? Focus on them and you will start noticing how more things done in less time that you think and you'll get rid of that anxiety.Speaker 1:
Right and you'll feel so much more accomplished. I mean, how many of you can relate? I mean I felt so much of what you just said right then, where it's like you have a list 10 miles long and you work the whole day and somehow at the end of the day you're like how did I feel like I got nothing done. But if you do boil it down to those three things and you do manage to get through those three things, you feel pretty darn good at the end of the day. I also share a little bit of a story about myself that helps any of you to relate and understand as well. Understanding your productivity style and how you tend to work. I think is important. It was very eye-opening for me. There was one quiz I took it was kind of the on the to-do list website, I believe and I got what was called Eat the Frog, which sounds disgusting because it's meant to be. It's a Mark Twain quote. Go figure, it's pretty whimsical, but it's the idea that the first thing in the morning, in the morning, the first thing you should do, is eat the frog. And the reason why he says it is because it's like the first thing you do in the morning, it should be the thing that you want to do the least, because then you're getting it done sooner. Because if you're somebody like me, I will get a million things done All of the net tasks, all of the emails answered, all of the whatever's done like the little things over here, except for that one big ugly thing that I didn't want to do, and I avoided it all day by doing everything else. When I read that, I was like, oh my gosh, I feel so seen, and now I know why I would struggle for days with getting something accomplished, because it was. I don't want to call it procrastination, but it's a form of procrastination. I'm putting off what absolutely needs to be done by doing all the little net things. So one question I have to build off of that, though, is how do you begin to prioritize? What do you look for when you're picking your top three goals or things to accomplish for that day?Speaker 2:
When it comes to prioritizing, I feel like a lot of people get so focused into what's urgent and what's important which is great, like you should be focusing on the things that are important, the things that are urgent. But when it comes to the urgent things, sometimes you feel like you're always putting down fires, everything that needs to be done as ASAP, like that's not productive either, because you're not planning for success. You're just putting down fires and you're not foreseeing. Okay, how can I just scale my business? How can I make this better? How can I just think about a better future for myself and my business? So one of the things that I do when it comes to prioritizing is first realize, as you say, your productivity style. What are the times that work best for you. Because if you were to tell me to have these talked at 7 am, I will say, oh no, I don't have the energy, I don't want to talk at 7 am. But also, if you told me 8 pm, I'm ready to go to bed, I want to watch a movie, I want to relax, slow down. So getting to know yourself is one of the best things that you can do when it comes to prioritizing. Then getting to know your energy. It's, again one of the best things that you can do. Use your prime time, that time when you have the most energy to do that thing. That's the most important. To work on that proposal, to focus on your clients, to whatever it is that will take you to the next level. Use where you have the most energy. And another thing that I also will encourage you to do is, for example, this for me, it's huge. I'm an introvert, yes, an introvert who likes being a coach, yes, and who likes speaking yes. But one of the things that I realized is, at the beginning, I was so excited with helping so many people that I start overbooking myself with a lot of calls. I had time in between, because I always have buffer time, like at least 15 minutes in between calls, all the time. But energy-wise, energy-wise I realized that, even if I love being with my clients and I love being here with you right now, having five calls, six, seven calls during a day, like I was completely drained. That was not helping my energy style. I rather have three calls where I give you all my energy, where I'm like, yes, I'm here for you 100%, and then having time to recharge, and maybe then just some days that I'm in my pajamas just doing admin stuff, because I don't want to see it. Yes, you need to embrace that. Don't force yourself to have 10 calls on a day when you're going to feel drained, and this goes with every kind of task that you will do. If you hate doing social media and content, try to break it down. Don't force yourself to do eight hours straight of that.Speaker 1:
That's a good point. That's a good point. I love that. That's very helpful. Thank you, ugh. So much good advice. I hope you all aren't getting as much out of this as I am, cause I feel like it's crazy I talk about this stuff so much but then every time we chat more about it with anyone especially somebody like you under the does just really focuses on this in particular. It's just such. It's even good reminders. And energy audit, I think, is a great piece of advice. I don't think a lot of us take that into consideration, and I'm a huge fan of time boxing. I have two days a week that I do not have any meetings so that I can, like you said, get admin work, deep work, done. And I get so much done in those days and if I stray from that and I like cave and I like schedule a meeting or attended event, I'm like so scared, I'm like, oh, I'm like I just realized how beneficial it is to carve out an honor and create that time and then really to stick to it. So thank you for all of that. That's amazing and I hope it's helpful to you all as well. You know, as I mentioned when I was reading your bio. You've been picked up by some pretty major media outlets, which is amazing, and congratulations on that. Can you maybe highlight a specific success story or a client transformation that shows the impact of the work that you've been doing and the strategies you've been applying and how it's really helped to change their lives?Speaker 2:
Sure, I mean, I can share so many stories, but in such a short period of time. But, yeah, I feel really grateful and honored to have helped so many people around the world and every time I feel like it's still a journey, like it's a journey and every single person is different, but I have, like I would say, three people right now in mind. Juan is Ingrid. I really love working with her and she's a seven figure CEO, mom of three, and even when she thought she was good at managing time, she was like, oh, I'm doing great, like seven figure presence, like you're doing great, of course. But after she worked with me, she realized that there were so many things she was wasting time on so many things. She was procrastinating, even when she felt she didn't procrastinate and you just mentioned it sometimes you're doing a lot of things but not the right things and that's some sort of procrastination. So I help her with that a lot. When she came back hours literally every single week and she realized the power it has, like she just let go a lot of things. That wasn't serving her. She started focusing on the right things, was able to be more time with their family, and that was one of the best things that I felt like was just realizing that you can gain back time, like literally gain back time just because now you know how to own it, now you know how not to waste it. It's one of the biggest things. And I have another one which I'm obsessed with this message and I feel like I always give it as an example just because it always makes me smile. Her name is Kristen and she was on a well Steeley. She was an entrepreneur who had a lot of anxiety and was feeling a lot of this overwhelm every time she felt she needed to take a break or every time she thought about taking time off. Like the anxiety hits is like I'm a solopreneur. I cannot just stop, because if I stop, my business stops. So how can I do so? We started working together on that, optimizing her calendar, just making sure she was taking care of the right things and working around that, reducing the stress, feeling like you can absolutely have boundaries. And there was one day. Well, first she started taking time off because eating the weekends was hard for her. So she started having more time with her husband going out on weekends riding the bike, like that was great. But one day she messaged me and she said I'm at the airport. My computer is not at the airport. This is the first vacation I've taken in three years.Speaker 1:
Oh my gosh so that for me again.Speaker 2:
I smile every time I think about it. It's such a huge change, like going from that anxiety to enjoying a vacation and feeling present, and once she came back, she shared with me, like Alejandra you have no idea how present I felt, not working and then realizing everyone around me were just paying attention to their emails and their phones and just checking their computer and I was present and it was incredible and I was like, yes, that's exactly how you feel. That's exactly how you feel. And I want to share our last one, just because I really want to give you like different spectrums on everything that you can have. So this is another Christine, and once we start working together, we were focusing again on optimizing her time, creating some systems and just getting rid of everything that wasn't working and just focusing on how she can achieve her goals without burning out. And she messaged me and she told me that in just a couple of months like two months that we've been working together she achieved more than in three years in her business. Wow that's it.Speaker 1:
You're like I'm done, I'm happy.Speaker 2:
That's what I needed to hear.Speaker 1:
Oh my gosh, that is fantastic. I love that. Well, congratulations again. Like you truly are sitting in your gift and finding ways to help make others successful, and that's such an awesome place to be. I think so many people desire to be in that place and I love that you're willing to share, like how you got there, what you're doing to maybe empower others to seek the other's opportunities to provide the same, because that's how we all get better is together. I love it. And then one other thing I wanted to call out that I wrote down that I'm totally gonna quote you on later is this idea that the gift of time management is being present. Like I guess I'm a huge when it comes to mindfulness. I spent 15 years working myself to the bone and being numb and being and doing all the things I thought everyone thought I ought to be and should be doing, and I just realized I went. So I lived so much of my life in the state of being numb and not present and there's nothing, nothing like sitting in a moment and truly being there, and I guess that's just one thing I didn't even think about For all the times. I've said I love time management and try to work it into how I function as a business owner and as a mom. You're 100% right being present is like the best gift of all. You know. That's amazing. Co-hatch is a new kind of shared work, social and family space built on. Community. Members get access to workspace amenities like rock walls and sports simulators and more, to live a fully integrated life that balances work, family, well-being, community and giving back. Co-hatch has 31 locations open or under construction nationwide, throughout Ohio, indiana, florida, pennsylvania, north Carolina, georgia and Tennessee. Visit wwwcohatchcom for more information. Let's talk about boundaries and saying no, you know, to any additional commitments. This is something a lot of us that are listening I'm sure have struggled with at some point myself as well. How can your system that you've created start to help others make more intentional choices about how they spend their time and where they spend their time, and maybe say no when they need to say no?Speaker 2:
Yeah. So one of the first things that I need to say is I was there myself, like I can assure you. I said yes to everything. It didn't matter how drained I felt, it didn't matter how many things I had on my plate, and that doesn't serve you Like seriously. That's not helping you. That's totally being selfish with yourself. Yeah, it's. You're not taking care of yourself. You're not prioritizing not even like your time. You're not prioritizing your mental health. It's insane. Yes to everything and not having a time to just unplug and be with yourself. That's not helping. So one of the things that I want to say is yes, I understand, I understand you, I get you and anyone who's going through this. You can get out of this Meaning. You can start establishing healthy boundaries, not feeling like you're selfish, not feeling like you're just letting others down, because I feel like that's one of the things that we feel is I will let them down, I feel guilty, they won't love me that much. I'm not such a good coach or friend or boss like you name it if you establish boundaries and this couldn't be more opposite to what boundaries actually give you, because when it comes to boundaries, you will start noticing a couple things. You need to remind yourself that once you establish boundaries, you are going to be so much more focused into the things that you're doing. And the other thing that I want you to remember is that everything you say yes to, you're saying no to other things. Because, yes, I can teach you how to own your time, how to reduce time wasted, but time is our most limited and precious resource. So every time you say yes to something, you're saying no to some other things. So you need to pick wise, and I'm not telling you to just randomly, just go for the things that you feel are going to give you the most result. What are the right things for you? So, in here, what I will start by saying is what are your priorities? And I'm not talking about your business priority, like I want to make a million and I need to work on my podcast, and I need to do this and I need to work on my clients your true priorities as a person, what are your non-negotiables? Your sleep, your eating time because I see you are. It was there to work in endless hours without eating because you didn't have time to eat. No, it was because it wasn't in the calendar. So put it in the calendar. That's one of the first things. Yes, what are your non-negotiables? What are those things that you really want to create more time for and then create the boundaries around them? So, for example, for me, family is my number one value and non-negotiable. Every time my family is nearby, like you can bet, I block my calendar. It's like, no, this is this is not gonna happen. My family is here. All that time goes for them. And the first things that I do when I create my yearly calendar is block those dates that, for me, are meaningful birthdays, holidays, christmas I love Christmas. So all of those things family trips those are the first things that I block. And then I plan my business around that. So, what are your non-negotiables? So, start paying attention to those. Block time around them. Protect it, because you're going to be predicting two things at the same time. Well, three things your time, your energy and the things that matter the most to you. And then there's a second step into this, because establishing boundaries is great Like, if you do it, amazing. If you don't communicate them. Why are you establishing them? People cannot read minds, at least not until I know but you need to communicate it and you need to communicate clear expectations, because if I just sit down right now and say these are my boundaries and I don't say anything to my clients, to my friends, to my family, to my boyfriend, nobody will respect them and you will feel mad Like nobody is respecting my boundaries. But have you shared them? Hey, this is the time. Yeah, sometimes it's like hey, for this hour that I'm recording the podcast, please don't come to my office. Just know that I'm recording. Like that's one boundary, just I let you know once I'm finished. We can work after, we can just go to a movie after, we can do everything after. But what are those times that you're protecting? And then also same, for example, with your clients? Don't call me at 3 am. I'm not going to answer you.Speaker 1:
I'm there for you 100% of the time. Anything you need I'm there, but I'm not going to wake up at 5 am to answer your message. That's a clear boundary, for example. So just make sure that you're protecting the right things and then communicate it. Nobody, nobody will be bothered by it. And, I'm being completely honest, one of the best things that you can do when establishing boundaries and this is a beautiful thing that I always see it creates a ripple effect. It creates a domino effect. You, by establishing your boundaries, allow others to do the same. They watch you and like is that possible? Like I can establish boundaries too and then they. It's just a domino effect. So I just love that.Speaker 1:
Yeah, I agree. I mean, it kind of makes me think about the times in which I was still working in the corporate world and somebody would take their birthday off every year without fail. They're like that's my day, I'm spending the day for myself, I'm doing my thing, and every year I'd be like I should do that, like finding it so inspired. But you're right, you have to take the action. You have to look ahead in your year and say what are the times and places and spaces I need to protect, and I think calendar blocking and time and manage like time boxing and things like that is such a tremendous way to do that. How do you feel that energy audits may be played into establishing boundaries?Speaker 2:
I feel like it's really important. Again, I don't want you to have, for example, if you're in the coaching business or almost every consulting entrepreneurship, that you need to have sales call or coffee chats or client calls or podcast recording, reuse calendar to book or call together. And if you have a system like that, the number one thing that you need to do around your energy is to start putting in there the times that you actually want to have those calls, because one of the first things that I see people doing is I got calendar, people can book me, and then I go there and they have every single day available, every single hour and I'm like, oh cool, we can chat at 2 am, that's perfect. So you need to start thinking also about your energy and saying okay, go back to what we say. If I can only have four calls, how can I put that as a limit when I create my calendar? If I want every single time to have at least 15 to 30 minutes, depending on the type of call, because if I have a 30-minute call, the buffer time is going to be 15 minutes. I'm okay with 15 minutes in between. If we have a one hour 90-minute call, you can bet I need at least 30. Yes, so these kinds of things is very important when you're establishing those boundaries, and same for the time that you need to take off. What are the times that you really want to take off and the times that you want to have just through yourself for self-care? So, for example, wednesdays for me are my self-care day and learning time. I don't like booking calls on Wednesday unless I go on vacation and then I say, okay, this week I will allow things on Wednesday because I'm going away, and this is something that, for me, has worked wonders, like it truly allows me to refresh, recharge and then be back on Thursday with way more energy. So these are the things that I feel like when you establish those boundaries and again communicate it always, always having in mind your energy.Speaker 1:
Yeah, 100%. I think I love that you brought up Calendly, because I adore it. I'm not going to lie, I'm going to nerd out for just a minute and then I will move on, I promise. What I love about it is I realized that the speaking of energy audits that one of my least favorite things to do was to go back and forth with people and a million emails and sometimes multiple people trying to find the right time for us to meet. It's exhausting. I understand, like that's why people sometimes hire somebody to do just that alone. But what I was finding was there was a ton of human error with all these admins, like somehow things were still not syncing upright and honestly, for me I didn't have the resources. And then I came upon Calendly and I'm like wow, here's something that I can automate, slash, delegate. I'm not my time boxing done. I know I do meetings on Tuesdays and Thursdays, namely, and I usually do them more towards the afternoon. So if I do an in person meeting it's maybe on a Tuesday or Thursday morning, but then by the rest of the afternoon I'm just virtual, even just setting up different types of meetings on my Calendly for different times of days based on that energy. Oh my gosh, such such a blessing. If you are a business owner and I mean Kelly's not even a sponsor yet I mean maybe I should reach out to them. But as a business owner it is such a saving grace in the sense of saving my sanity. And then again, like I said, realizing that I don't want to spend my time going back and forth coordinating with people about what times to meet, I would really much rather send them the link and I hope people don't find it pretentious, but I'm like here's my calendar link because I don't have an admin to like send you to do all the back and forth with Plus. It syncs up with your time and their calendar, so it makes it hopefully easier for them as well. So I definitely agree with you there. On the love for Calendly, I digress, alright, I've got a couple more questions and then we will open it up to our listening audience. If you have them, please, since we've had a lot of mute issues, go ahead and just type it into the chat for me versus coming off of mute. So I've got a couple more questions for you, alejandra, and then we will wrap it up if we don't have questions from the audience. But I hope you all feel encouraged to ask a work life balance. We talked a little bit about this earlier. It's a pretty common challenge. What role does work life harmony play in the in your specific approach, and how can our listeners start to integrate this balance into their lives effectively?Speaker 2:
I love this question so much because, as I say, I feel like this, this particular aspect is what I truly love the most when it comes to owning your time is having that work life balance, is being able to thrive in your professional and personal life Without burning out like again. That's one of the biggest things in here. So, when it comes to really having bad work life balance, I'd make sure in everything that I created but it was based around that, as I just share like if we're going to plan, the number one thing that I will tell you is, like those birthdays block, that family time or the holidays, I always have that in mind and that flexibility. And also, when it comes to your motivation, I want you to start tapping into that inner motivation that you have. That's the third pillar, by the way, it's motivation on the time protocol. So everything inside the time protocol was built in a way that serves you and I really focus, as I said, on that flexibility, on your energy levels, on what are those things that you want to achieve, and it's very focused on the work life balance, one of the things that I encourage anyone who's trying to get this work life balance and just are not sure exactly how to tap into it. I want to say two things. One, some people don't believe in balance just because they expect that to be 5050 every single day, like if I have 24 hours, like I divided and then I have like. No, I don't want your life to be like math. I want you to really be able to look at your calendar and enjoy everything that you're seeing there. I want you to look at your life and enjoy both your work and your personal life. Some days it might be a little more work. Yes, sometimes it might feel like a little less work. Yes, and I don't want you to feel guilty about it. I want you to again enjoy everything, and the more you automate, the more you delegate, the more time for yourself you will have. So if you're thinking that's not balance just because you might have more time for yourself, like I will double think that. But also one of the things I always do and this goes inside the impact pillar, that's pillar number two when it comes to creating routines and habits, I want you to focus on what are those things that serves you on your current daily basis, like what are the routines that serves you in your lifestyle, but also considering already the lifestyle you want to have, like that desire lifestyle, and how you can start mixing those kinds of routine or just upgrading the one that you already have so you can start stopping tapping into that. So, if you're right now, you don't have that work life balance. One of the things that we will focus on is creating that routine according to your actual state, like your current state, to get there already, implementing things that you know will already get you there, and those are things that you want. And then the last thing that I want to say, when it comes to achieving balance and when it comes to really having this fulfilling life, is I want you to stop for a second and I want you to ask yourself what success means to you. Yeah, because one of the biggest reasons why I see people not thriving or not feeling fulfilled or feeling burnout is because they're pursuing the wrong things. We've been thought that success look like certain thing making millions, having that the hatch, having that luxury home. If you want that, awesome, yes, it looks nice. Obviously, who doesn't want that? But if you're going to measure your success according to other people's desire, yeah, you're going to start chasing the wrong thing. So every time that you go after a goal, you might not feel as fulfilled. Even when you reach it is like I guess I did it, okay, now what? So what success looks like for you? How does it feel? What do you want to do once you reach that goal and how you know you will get there? I feel like one of the most powerful things that you could do is start thinking for yourself, about yourself and what's that thing that you want to create, because that's when you can start creating a plan and a roadmap to bear where you want to be the way you want to feel, and just feeling again fulfilled.Speaker 1:
Yeah, I think that's great because, like, like we said earlier, that helps you once you've established that vision, that purpose, your values, your vision for yourself, the definition of success for you, not everybody else it gives you that guardrails for boundaries. It helps you look at opportunities that come your way and say, yes, this is right for me or no, this isn't. Maybe, you know, maybe it's not a no, but it's not. It's like I'm not right now. Right now kind of situation. I think that's wonderful, okay. So now I'm curious because I feel like everybody else that's listening is curious. We covered time for the time protocol, so T is tracking right. What is I impact? Impact okay, and is motivation, so T is evolution.Speaker 2:
And this was for me to really start just looking at all the progress that you're doing every single day. You're making progress every single day, even if you're not realizing it, and the reason for evolution is because we're human beings and we're growing and evolving every single day in our lives. So how you can tap into that evolution again to create that desire outcome, to create that desire lifestyle that you want, while also working on your own state. And one of the biggest things inside this pillar is how to get comfortable with being uncomfortable, yeah, how you keep expanding your comfort zone, how you can create small changes to just create again that constant evolution. The other side of this pillar is because we know our lives are constantly changing, not only yourself, but everything around us. So what happens when you change work, when you move out of country, when you are family increase, you don't change anything. Or your pivot in your business, like whatever it is, we are constantly changing everything. So in those times I realize that normally people freak out a lot and again, it's normal like we don't like changes, especially when we cannot control them. So, when it comes to everything that I wanted to teach, when it came to design it, a protocol that will serve you for your whole life. That's what I wanted with the evolution is okay, now my life has changed. Yeah, how can I just take everything I learned? Yeah, and keep applying it and not just throwing it into the garbage and say, now, what Basically restarts the wheel? It's like a beautiful cycle where you say, okay, let me track where I'm right now, let me audit again, gaining that awareness, and you know you're not going to start from ground zero, you already have. Everything you've done is just what needs to be tweaked right now. And okay, now my life has changed. How can I change my routine? How can I change my habits, my mindset, what do I need to work on? I have new goals. What's my motivation behind it? So everything is just like this, I don't know. Infinite cycle, basically. And that's because we're evolving every single day, and that's why I wanted the last pillar to reflect this and to just encourage you for it to serve you your whole life.Speaker 1:
So wonderful and so thoughtful and so intentional. I'm going to thank you so much. This has been really helpful and informative for those who are still live listening with us right now. Just check out the chat. I've got a number of ways in which you can connect with Alejandra, including a 20 minute free time comment, and I'm going to add it. That's very generous of you. Thank you for that. A goals guide. You can connect with her on LinkedIn and Instagram will also include those in the show notes. So, yeah, again, great conversation. Alejandra, I love that you are in the together and it's been fun seeing you there and I hope to see there again more. You're adding so much value to the world for so many women to just be accomplished but be present and really celebrate the work that they're able to do and the time they're able to spend with their loved ones. So again, huge fan, thank you so much for being with us today.Speaker 2:
Thank you. I really enjoy it and if anyone has questions, just feel free to drop it in here or to also be inside the together digital like message me on Slack. You can connect with me Anything you need. I'm happy to share it with you because, again, you can see, I'm really passionate about this stuff and I know it can change your life. That's, that's the truth. I know it can change your life and I just want to score you on that.Speaker 1:
And such a fan Awesome. Well, thank you again. So much. Alright, everyone. Oh, we've got free today. Have a fantastic Friday. I hope you take some of this rich information and reflection and take it into the weekend and spend some time on yourself this weekend and reclaim that time. We'll see you on this week. Take care Bye.