• Breanna Aponte

Work SMART, not HARD

This is probably my FAVORITE thing to talk about. So many people struggle to get things done and reach their goals simply because they aren’t attacking them correctly. People get overwhelmed with the process and end up quitting before giving themselves a real chance. Or have goals that are soooo big that they don’t know where to start.


If that’s you, I’m here to help! I consider myself a goal slayer. I set my goals, I reach my goals. Like clockwork.


When Dre first met me he said the thing he found most attractive was my ambition to want something and go get it.


So today I’m sharing the things you need to know, do and master in order to work SMART, not hard and achieve your wildest dreams.


Before anything else, shift your mindset and mentally prepare. I know I talk about this all the time but I have to! It is so important to believe in yourself and your capabilities of doing what you put your mind to. The more you accomplish the more confident you become but you have to start somewhere.


Work on your self confidence and the skill sets needed in order to reach the goals you have. If you haven’t done the research, if you have no experience, you should work on those before even creating a plan to accomplish your goal.


Preparation is just as important as the Execution. In fact, without preparation, you may not be able to execute at all.


Having the mindset that you can do something will majorly affect the chances of you actually doing it.


So take time to mentally prepare yourself and restore the confidence you need in order to slay your goals.


Now here are my steps for mastering the art of working SMART, not hard.


1. Create a plan from start to finish


In order to work smart, you need to know exactly what the plan is in order to properly execute it. Creating the plan is simply understanding the steps of what’s needed in order to accomplish the goal. For this blog I’ll continue to use my podcast as an example.


My plan included the following steps:


Research the things I had questions about or didn’t know when it came to doing a podcast

Decide on a title and focus for the podcast

Decide on the verbiage and background music for the intro and outro

Purchase the necessary equipment

Choose topics for 6 months of episodes

Create the scripts for all 24 episodes

Edit all 24 episodes

Automate episodes

Automate social media & email blasts

Launch podcast


So the plan provides a step by step guide for what needs to be done in order to reach the goal which in this case was creating and launching a podcast.


2. Think of everything


In order to work smart, you need to think of all the things that will allow you to get the max results with minimal effort. For example, I realized that I could use the podcast scripts and turn them into blog posts. Allowing me to launch both a podcast AND a blog without adding additional work to my workload. Max results, minimum effort.


I also wanted to make sure that I talked about things my audience would be interested in or need help with. So instead of spending hours brainstorming or second guessing myself, I created a IG Story asking what topics my audience would want and I turned their suggestions into episodes and then built off what I had.


Another example is this, I knew from my research that in order to be listed on Apple podcast, I needed at least 50 reviews and ratings. So before I launched to the public, I sent out my intro episode to family and friends and had each of them leave a rating and review. By the time my podcast was released to the public, I was listed and ranked on Apple podcast and Spotify!


This step will sometimes shift your actual plan because you might think of things you didn’t think of when creating it. That’s totally fine! You can always adapt and change your plan.


3. Do proper research or outsource


Once you have your plan and you’ve thought about all the other possible things that could help your process and plan, research what you need to and outsource what you need to.


For example, I had no clue what type of equipment I needed so I outsourced that part to someone who I knew knows about technology and recording. Now luckily for me, that person is my fiance haha.


I also knew I needed marketing material. Content for social media, graphics to announce a new episode, covers for my free guides, website page for the podcast and blog, etc. Again, I was lucky because I do all of those things professionally but this may be things you will need to outsource.


Now yes, you could try doing all these things on your own but remember the goal here is to work SMART, not hard. If you take the cheap or short cut route, it’s only going to cause more headache in the long run.


If you’re going to do it, do it right!

4. Batch Work


Batch working is literally my life saver. If you truly know me, you know that I hate being on social media and I hate taking pictures. I know, this doesn’t add up at all with what you see or probably assumed of me but that’s because I’ve mastered the art of batch working. I understand the importance of social media and because my businesses thrive off of it, I have to be intentional with it.


Batch working allows me to do that! I spend 3-4 days a year creating content that lasts me 3-4 months! That means I only shoot content 1x every 3-4 months. That content is then automated with captions and hashtags allowing me to intentionally show up on social media without having to physically be on the platform.


I spend my time doing the things I love with the people I love while also building my brand and growing my influence.


Batch working is AMAZING because you’re able to be super strategic with your brand instead of taking photos in the moment and throwing them up on your page.


Instead, you think of the things that are small but make big differences like your clothes, your background, your lighting, your captions and ultimately the call to action that will be tied to that photo. This is when you shift from using social media as a form of entertainment to using it as a free tool to build your brand or business.


Batch working isn’t just for content creation. It can be for anything! For the example I'm using, it would be for creating and recording the podcast episodes, my email blasts and automation.


Instead of writing an episode then recording it, then scheduling it, then creating an email blast, I would pick 1 day to focus on scripting for all my episodes, another day to focus on recording them, and another day to create the email blasts and automate everything out.


Studies prove that we work best when we are focused on 1 task at a time. So instead of switching back and forth and doing tedious work, knock out each step of the process, 1 at a time. Cause once it’s done, it’s done!


Imagine working for 4 days and completing 6 months worth of work! That’s what I call being productive!

5. Automate


Automation is by far the number one time saver! You will make your life soooo much easier once you start to automate.


You can automate everything from social media posts to emails and newsletters.


Think about all the things that you currently do or would need to do on a weekly basis and automate them so that you only have to worry about it 1x a month instead of weekly!


Or if you’re really prepared, automate 1x every 6 months like I do! It’s amazing to go on with my life and know that every week, my subscribers are getting a blog post, a podcast episode, a YouTube video, social media postings, and updates via email!


Allowing me the proper time to dedicate to bigger projects, my clients and my loved ones!


If you haven’t already listened to episodes 15, 16 and 17 which talk about the power of saying no, setting boundaries and finding balance, that would be the perfect place to start. Because in order to work smart, you have to have your priorities figured out and you have to be able to say no to things that don’t align with your goals and waste your time.


Once you have that down, you can start with step 1 of shifting your mindset in order to work SMART, not hard, create a plan, execute the plan, batch work and automate.


This won’t be easy at first but practice makes perfect. If you truly want to reach your biggest goals, follow in the footsteps of those who have reached goals of their own. Most likely your friends and family won’t be able to help you because chances are, they’ve never done it themselves. So get around people who are where you want to be or who have like minded values as you.


Listen to podcasts, just like you are now. Read books, do your research! Your goals aren’t as far away as you think they are, trust me I know!


Put in the work to prepare yourself, dedicate yourself to execute your plan and use these tips to work SMART, not hard.


I hope you enjoyed this episode and until next time, be shameless!

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