As a solopreneur there is always an endless list of projects that we want to work on or need to complete in order to grow our business. If we don't plan properly and build in time to work on these projects we can very quickly become overwhelmed, and in the end we don't complete anything.

This first quarter I've launched two products, revamped my website, hosted a teleclass series, and launched a new service, all of which have been achieved without sacrificing client work, and without staying up until the wee small hours of the morning!

So, how do I achieve all of this, and still manage to have some free time?

Quite simply, I plan! And today, I'd like to share with you my top five tips for planning for success!

1. Create a Project Planner. I have my own one-of-a-kind List Building and Marketing Workbook that I use to plan which projects I am going to work on and when. This spreadsheet is at the heart of my business; I keep it handy so that I can refer to it often, and I update it on a regular basis.

It sets the scene for projects that I want and need to complete for the year, although I don't necessarily plan out the whole year in advance! I plan by quarters. That makes it much easier and more achievable than trying to plan out the whole year, although I may add projects to my planner well in advance!

2. Create a Timeline For Your Projects. Are there some projects that you can't complete or begin work on until you've completed a previous one? For example, one of my projects this year is to set up and run an affiliate program for my products; however there is really little point in me working on the affiliate program until I have some products to sell! So first I need to create and launch the products, then work on the affiliate program. So when planning for this, I know that I can add affiliate program set up for at least six months ahead.

3. Set Aside The Time To Work On Your Business. I have one day a week that I set aside for business development and marketing activities, such as developing info products, writing my newsletter, submitting articles, or some other activity on my List Building and Marketing Workbook. On this day I don’t do any client work (if a client has an urgent project then I may have to rethink) but as a general rule this is the day and time I have set aside to work on my business.

4. Plan The Time For Client Work. Set aside specific days/time each week that you are available to work on your client and income generating activities so that they do not get overlooked. Put this time down in your calendar so that you will stick to it.

5. Do Not Allow Yourself To Get Distracted. The truth is I only have a very limited amount of time during which I can work with my clients and work on my business. The time I do have I protect it closely and really focus on what it is I need to do, whether that’s client work or working on my business. During this time I won’t let myself get distracted by going off and reading emails, becoming involved in discussion groups, or even running personal errands.

By really focusing and making the best possible use of the limited time you have available, you can can achieve A LOT! I know I do!

(c) 2008 Tracey Lawton

Author's Bio: 

Online Business Manager & Virtual Assistant, Tracey Lawton, teaches professional speakers, coaches, and authors how to operate an efficient, organized, and profitable business. Learn how to create an efficient and organized office in 7 EASY steps, and receive free how-to articles at