Small Business Support - Midlands
'Batching' - it's like meditation for your workflow... 
Here at Alchemy Virtual Assistance, we’re BIG 'batchers'.  
Batching is a wonderful working style that we find to be a powerful boost to both productivity and mood! 
Batching is also known as grouping, time blocking, batch processing, time batching and we like to think of it as meditation for your workflow... 
“Meditation is a practice where an individual uses a technique – such as mindfulness, or focusing the mind on a particular object, thought, or activity – to train attention and awareness, and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state.” - Wikipedia 
We all know a clear, calm and stable mental state is fundamental to running a successful business! So, here’s how we use batching to ensure we’re working in a comfortable yet efficient, productive state! 
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What is 'batching'? 
Consider batching as the complete opposite of multi-tasking. It’s allowing your brain to work on one thing at a time, giving the task at hand your complete focus. 
According to Harvard Business Review , the brain operates optimally when it toggles between focus and unfocus, allowing you to develop resilience, enhance creativity and make better decisions. 
Put a different way, it takes energy and effort for your brain to switch focus from task to task. In adopting batching as a working style you’re giving optimal brain power to your business. 
It’s all about finding your flow and getting into a peaceful, yet productive zone! 
How to do it... 
Take a look at your to-do list or write one, if you haven’t already got one 
Take some time to group (or batch) your tasks logically by their function - emails, project work, creative elements, accounting jobs, business development etc. 
Then split out your day into sections and slot the tasks in to your schedule - keeping in mind your personal working flow and style. 
Here is an example, to get you thinking... 
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As you can see from this example here, I have 'batched' my personal appointments together and booked them on a day I know tends to be quieter for my business. Running personal errands mid-week gives me peace of mind that I have a couple of days either side if anything urgent drops in unexpectedly. 
You may not be a morning person but I’m an early riser so, I batch and schedule jobs that require the most brain power first thing in the morning as I know that’s when I’m at my best. 
All this preparation work (which realistically takes and hour or two a month maximum) means I’m relaxed about my workflow and feel completely in control of my schedule, life and business. 
Let’s be realistic... 
You can be the most organised person in the world but, life still happens! 
But remember... 
It’s YOUR schedule - you’re always in control 
It’s sensible to build in a ‘wiggle buffer’ (an Alchemy Virtual Assistant term) for life emergencies or unexpected things 
Make it your own - apply colour codes, labels, use highlighters or stickers... What ever helps you make batching enjoyable and working for you 
Give yourself a chance - please don’t feel you have to become a batching queen over night! You can slowly and subtly incorporate batching into your business at a pace that works for you. It shouldn't’t be yet another thing that you HAVE to do that stresses you out. 
Time is our most precious resource and we all have the same number for hours in our days. It’s what you do with those hours that counts. 
If you’d like to chat more about batching, any other time management/productivity techniques or about how a professional Virtual Assistant can support you - get in touch. 
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