A Week in the Life of a Change Manager and Founder
On my recent Change Tools and Templates Masterclass, I spoke a lot about how making the move to Change Management has brought me incredible financial security, flexibility and freedom. I tripled my salary in the space of 3 years, now live in a beautiful city apartment, am on track to paying off my first property in just 7 years, flex between 4-5 working days per week, and spend a month or two each year to travel or explore passions. Oh, and did I mention? I also run a side hustle as the Founder & CEO of Passion Pioneers.
So, how do I balance my time between my day job and running my business, whilst staying fit, having a personal life, and relaxing?
Well, a couple of years ago I wrote a blog post called A Day in the Life of a Change Manager, NLP Practitioner and Career Change Coach. In that article, I stepped you through one of my business days. Times have changed, so I thought now I'd step you through a typical week.
A week in my life
I wake up at 6.00am, stretch for an hour and go for a run. I listen to a podcast - usually entrepreneurial or leadership-focused (at the moment I alternate between Seize the Yay and Leading Women), or if I'm in the mood I'll listen to some jams. As a Lark, my best time is the mornings. So I always try to get my workout in or else I know it doesn't happen. Every second Monday morning, I head to the physio because COVID be like - too much sitting! I really commit to doing what's needed to keep my body in shape because without that foundation of health... it's really hard to do anything else.
I work full-time as a Change Manager with some of Australia's biggest companies. So Monday to Friday in business hours is pretty much spent working on projects. At the moment, I'm in a global role so sometimes have meetings early mornings or into evenings.
Monday nights vary - we have a local community market and I like to wander down in the late afternoon and buy veggies, specialty cheese, organic meat and fresh flowers. I also sit in the fading sunshine listening to the live music. It reminds me of being in France, and how the little villages would come alive on market days.
If it's a physio Monday, then that night I lead my 3 sisters through a virtual yoga class. My family is spread all across Australia and the globe, with the difficulty of timezones, so we really only connect on Facetime, travel holidays, or this yoga class. If it's not a physio Monday, it's a massage Monday and my partner and I get a sports therapy massage each in the evening.
Because of the yoga or the massage the night prior, I either sleep in Tuesdays or get up and do some business work. Sometimes, I'll swim laps and chill in the sauna, and feel privileged to live in a building that has all of these facilities inside it. So few residents use them, I'm often the only one in the pool, spa and sauna so it's like having a private resort! The swim and sauna is one of the only times I really disconnect from a laptop, phone, notebook or flipchart, so I get lots of great ideas and design workshops and sessions and blog posts in my head. I have to time my swims through the week in line with when my hair needs a wash (seriously!). Because during COVID I decided to grow my hair long and sell it like Jo from Little Women, it takes a good 40 minutes to wash, comb and blow dry so I do it twice a week in line with my swims to save time. Work again, then Tuesday nights are usually date night with my partner and we'll go out for dinner. Some Tuesday nights I tune in to spirituality webinars run by the amazing Michael Adamedes.
I feel like Wednesdays are when my week really starts. I usually run on Wednesdays, and sometimes I'll grab a coffee with some gentlemen from my building who meet every day in the cafe downstairs. When I was working 4 days per week, Wednesdays were my business day for Passion Pioneers. But since COVID working from home, I've chosen to work 5 days in my Change work and because I'm a day rate contractor, I take time off to do speaking gigs or work with business clients (like running a leadership training). If I'm hosting a live webinar, Masterclass or program, I'll do the sessions on Wednesday nights. If I'm doing one-on-one Executive Coaching, I'll do these Wednesday nights, which works well for both me and my clients who are often working full-time, too.
Thursday mornings are either a swim or yoga. Work during the day, then Thursday nights are free nights, I'll do whatever - watch Netflix or have conversations on LinkedIn.
Fridays are always a run day. My cleaner comes Friday mornings, which I must say is one of the best things I ever did. If you read back over my Day in the Life of article, you'll see I used to have to squeeze cleaning and cooking into my weekend but now, blissfully and by choice, I get my whole apartment cleaned and clothes washed, dried and put away on a Friday so I can move into the weekend really relaxed. I don't like cleaning, I'm not very good at it, and it tires me out. I'd rather spend my time and energy working in my business, and outsource the things that someone else can do. Some Friday nights I'll do virtual drinks with old colleagues, or I'll go out to dinner with friends, or order in for a relaxed end of week Netflix binge with my partner.
This is my one day of the week where I completely switch off and relax - no work, no business. I might do a walk with a friend, or spend time with my partner, go out for lunch, or a birthday, or garden, or whatever really.
I call Sunday a business day but it's really a half day. I'll usually wake up around 8.00am and stretch and run. Then my partner and I go out for breakfast and I'm usually home by 10.00am-11.00am. I spend Sundays writing blog posts like this, designing courses, coaching clients, writing workshops. I take lots of breaks in between, sitting on our garden terrace in the sunshine, pottering in the veggie troughs or succulents (green thumb, I have not), streaming tv shows, cooking a meal or two, or listening to meditations. Our grocery or produce online orders usually arrive for the week ahead. Sunday nights you'll see me get active on LinkedIn again, sometimes I'll swim and wash my hair, and I always finish with my weekly planning: Achievements, Magic Moments, and the outcomes and tasks for the week ahead.
Time to sum it all up
To say I'm busy would be an understatement. And I love it! I feel that with full-time work, a side hustle, 3-5 workouts, and carved-out slots for spending time with friends, family, my partner and Netflix, I have a lot of balance. It hasn't happened by accident - I've chosen to build that balance in, because I don't want to burn out so much building my career and business that I don't get to enjoy the rewards (it's lucky that I love my work). You'll also see me talk a lot about "time", because as a Dominant personality Time is super important to me and I want to maximise every day that I have on this beautiful earth. Time is our great equaliser - we all have the same amount. It's how we spend it that counts. And I tend to think: Is it helping me have more time in the future? Is it helping me enjoy right now? Is it helping me make the most of the time I have? If the answer is yes to any of these, sure - I'll invest. Where do you spend yours?
Lata Hamilton is the Founder & CEO of Passion Pioneers, an Executive Coach and Change Leadership Trainer. Sign up to her Change Inspiration mailing list here to get weekly goodies such as articles, templates, tools, videos and upcoming courses direct to your inbox.