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How to Create Boundaries Around Your Time, Tips from Randi Zuckerberg

Randi Zuckerburg was the head of marketing at Facebook during it's early years, and now is the CEO and founder of her own marketing firm, Zuckerberg Media.  She knows first hand how easy it is to let work take over your life and offers some great tips in an interview by Entrepreneur.com on how she manages her own work / life balance.  

For your scanning pleasure, we highlighted the tips that we liked best!

1. How do you start your day?
I start my day with a little bit of a cheesy mantra that I’ve been using for about 10 years. It says, “work, sleep, fitness, family, friends -- pick three.” There is a lot of pressure, especially on women, to do everything well, every single day. I like to give myself permission to do three things really well each day, and it can be a different three tomorrow, as long as it all balances out in the long run.

2. How do you end your day?
In my ideal mind, I want to do something relaxing, like meditation or yoga. In reality, I’m in bed on social media, on my laptop and on my phone all at the same time. That’s an area of my life that I’m actively trying to work towards. I know that sleep and relaxation is so important, but I would consider myself a work in progress when it comes to the end of the day habits.

3. What’s a book that changed your mind and why?
Me, Myself and Us by Dr. Brian Little. I struggled for a long time because I’m really an introvert, but I have to act extrovertedly, because I’m giving speeches or meeting with entrepreneurs. I felt very alone in the world and then Dr. Little came out with this book about being pseudo extrovert, and it was all about introverts that have to pretend to be extroverts for their business lives.

It totally changed my life and opened up a whole world of thinking for me. The book said if you go out there and have to act extraverted, don’t forget you’re an introvert at the core, which means you’re going to need to build in downtime to your schedule, otherwise you're going to burn out. We don’t run on the same kind of social energy that extroverts do. So I know that if I have a day where I am on camera or giving a talk, I’ll actually build “do not schedule” blocks of time into my calendar. That’s not something I would have done before his book, but it’s something that’s really effective in my business and personal life.

4. What’s a book you always recommend and why?
Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes. It’s an awesome book. She’s an incredible woman and I think that we can all get out of our comfort zone a little more.

5. What’s a strategy to keep focused?
I like to carve out blocks of time that I’m going to be unplugged, which is sometimes frustrating to the rest of my team. But I find that it’s hard to do creative, thoughtful tasks when you are interrupted by emails and text messages. I like to carve out two to three hours, where I do a deep dive into writing a piece or working on a speech. That is the most effective hours of my entire day.

6. When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?
For a while, I wanted to be a mermaid, but apparently that was not a tangible goal. I really wanted to sing on Broadway. That was my big goal my entire life. I eventually gave it up to go into something reasonable, like technology and entrepreneurship.

7. What did you learn from the worst boss you ever had?
I learned about how to treat people, but I also learned that is is better to give people feedback in the moment. Early in my career, I had these bosses that would check in with me every six months -- and tell me for last six months that I’ve been doing x, y and z and that’s not good. I’d sit there thinking, “Why didn't you tell me six months ago, so that I wasn’t just making the same mistakes?” That impacted my own management style, because I always want to give feedback in the moment.

8. Who has influenced you most when it comes to how you approach your work?
I’m so lucky to have a great mentor in Kathleen Kennedy, who is the president of LucasFilm. She’s given me great advice on what happens when you’re the only woman in the room, and how to find mentorship and peer guidance around you even if you have to look in other industries.

We’ve definitely spoken about the fact that sometimes your best mentors are right around you, and you don’t even know. A lot of times we look for someone high above us to be a mentor, but often peer-mentor groups are actually going to be the most effective and helpful.

9. What’s a trip that changed you?
About a year ago, I traveled to Kuwait. I spoke at one of the first women in business conferences they had in the entire country. It really opened my eyes and challenged my viewpoint. I met some wonderful entrepreneurs that I’m still in touch with on social media. I feel really grateful for that opportunity, and it made me realize that I need to take more trips like that to get out of my own bubble and to expand my view of entrepreneurship in different regions in the world.

10. What inspires you?
Definitely art, theater, culture. Anytime that I want to feel inspired I go to the theater. I spent so much time in my life building platforms, and it’s easy for techies to forget that platforms are nothing without art to go on them.

To read the additional 10 questions and answers by Randi Zuckerman visit the full article on Entrepreneur.com 

 



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