Share this article!

Published on 14 Dec, 2023
If you’re a solopreneur, self-employed, or have the aspiration to work for yourself someday then creating a STRUCTURE that supports your goals and lifestyle is critical.
Image item
I’ve been working for myself for three years now.
It’s been great.
I get to:
  • Set my own goals
  • Create my own schedule
  • Have complete control of my time
Sounds great in theory?
It is, BUT…
“With great power comes great responsibility.”
When you work for yourself you also take full responsibility for your results.  
This means if you slack off or work on the wrong activities then you don’t get paid.
And you have no-one to blame other than yourself. 
This is one of the biggest challenges of self-employment.
When you’re an employee you are:
  • Given goals to focus on
  • Given a structure to follow
  • Held accountable by your manager
And you don’t need to think about your income. 
Even if you slack off from time to time you still get paid. 
When you work for yourself it takes immense discipline
I consider myself a disciplined person, but I’ve found the journey from employee to self-employed challenging at times. 
Recently, I found myself slipping into bad habits that were having an impact on my mindset, work satisfaction and results.
Now that I am the sole breadwinner for our family with Kaci off on maternity leave for the foreseeable future – I knew I had to get back on top of my routine. 
And it’s these small changes to my routine I want to share with you today. 
Five Small Changes to my Routine that Increased my Productivity, Output and Work Satisfaction: 
     1) Get out of Bed within 5 to 10 minutes of waking
Since Clifford was born I found myself starting to slip into bad waking up habits.
Most mornings I would lay in bed for 30 minutes to over an hour! 
I was ‘procrastinating’ on starting my day. 
And this procrastination would seep into the rest of my day.
It’s easy to lay in bed for longer than you should when you don’t have to commute to ‘work’ and be there at a specific time.
When I was driving home from the gym the other week, I heard this line from the book ‘Three Feet from Gold’:
“Your first five minutes dictate your day.” 
That line smacked me in the face and helped me realise it was time to get my morning discipline back.
Upon reflection I always feel so much better when I’m up early and getting straight into action.  
     2) Start Work Earlier
Something Alex Hormozi said in his new book ‘$100M Leads’ hit me like a tonne of bricks. 
“If I had to pick the three habits that best served me in my life – they would be:
  1. Waking up early (4-5am) – Pro tip, this actually means going to bed early…
  2. Getting right to work – No rituals. No routines. I drink coffee and get to work.
  3. No meetings until noon – No interruptions. Nothing. Fully focused work time.”
It was the second point that really stood out to me.
I was delaying getting started on my work day because I had this big routine that would take me a couple hours to complete. 
I wouldn’t get into my work until 9 – 9:30am. 
I decided from Monday to Thursday (which are my ‘work’ days) I WOULD NOT sit down with a coffee and read a book. Instead I would substitute my coffee for an ‘e-shot’ and head straight to the office after breakfast to work on my high-value tasks for the day. 
I would save the morning coffee and reading for Friday to Sunday –  so it felt more like a ‘treat’ than just the normal.  
This habit combined with getting straight out of bed meant I was getting into my high-value tasks for the day 90 minutes to two hours earlier! 
I started to feel like I had won the day by 9am instead of starting my day at 9am.  
     3) No Phone in the Office
Our phones seem to have their own gravitational pull. 
Whenever they are in sight or in reach, they draw us in… 
When we feel ‘resistant’ about the important tasks we need to do, our phones become an easy distraction for us. 
Grabbing our phone has become so habitual we don’t even realise we’re doing it!
And that’s why I made the decision ‘no phones in the office’.
This small habit has been a game-changer for my focus and productivity.  
I no longer feel the gravitational pull of my phone. 
As they say – “Out of sight, out of mind.”  
     4) Plan my Day the Night Before
If you’ve worked with me before or completed the ‘Fix your Finances’ Challenge then you know the importance of setting your high-value tasks each day. 
This is one of the most powerful habits you will ever build! 
I used to set my high-value tasks in the morning.
But I recently made the switch to writing them out at the end of the day. 
The benefit of this small tweak has been I don’t need to think about what I want to prioritise in the morning – instead I can get straight into execution mode.
This means more brain-power can be used on taking ACTION rather than thinking about what needs to be done for the day.  
     5) Shut down Computer and tidy Workspace
Do you have a messy workspace?
Do you always leave your computer turned on with a million tabs open?
That’s how I used to operate. 
But the messy office and million tabs I had open was the manifestation of an unfocused and unclear mind. 
I knew I was setting myself up for failure if I continued to work like this. 
I made the decision to turn my computer off at the end of the work day and tidy up my office space. Not only has this helped me feel good walking into a clean office space at the beginning of a new day –  it’s also helped me signal when the work day is over.
This is important because when you’re working from home the lines between ‘normal life’ and ‘work life’ can become blurred.  
If you’re a solopreneur, self-employed or aspire to work for yourself someday then it’s critical you create a structure that supports your goals and lifestyle. 
After noticing myself slip into bad habits that were affecting my output I decided to make these five changes to my routine:
     1) Get out of Bed within 5 to 10 minutes of Waking
     2) Start Work Earlier
     3) No Phone in the Office
     4) Plan my Day the Night Before
     5) Shut down Computer and tidy Workspace
Since implementing these five changes I’ve noticed a massive change in my mindset, productivity and satisfaction levels.  
James Clear wrote in his masterpiece, ‘Atomic Habits’
“When scientists analyse people who appear to have tremendous self-control, it turns out those individuals aren’t all that different from those who are struggling. Instead, ‘disciplined’ people are better at structuring their lives in a way that does not require heroic willpower and self-control.
If you’ve noticed yourself slipping then this is your reminder to reflect on your routine and see what needs tweaking.
Big Love,

Share this article!


Financial Habits Mentor & Host of the Podcast 'Money Mastery with Marshy.


  • Find the leaks in your money buckets
  • Reprogram your mind for financial success
  • Live Group Coaching + Community to help you on your journey

'Money Mastery with Marshy' Membership

  • Instant Access to an Online Portal Of Content so you can start improving your financial skills right away
  • ‘Money Management with Marshy’ -  a 9-Step process to help you manage your money with ease & grow your Net Worth to $1 million +
  • Live Fortnightly Q&A  Calls to unpack modules and get support 

1:1 Coaching 

  • For Conscious Business Owners who are doing $100k - $500k Revenue Per Year
  • Fix the leaks in your business & personal finances so you can save more and make more profits!
  • Limited availability - book a call with me to see if I can help you win