Have you ever heard of the phrase “being the CEO of your home?” Well, a way you can do this is through the use of systems. Systems create efficiency and allow us the freedom to create the space to do more of the things that feel good to us, and this week’s guest is here to share how you can create systems for anything you want in your home.
Geomyra Pollard is a coach for creative entrepreneurs, moms, and people who are just trying to reclaim their time and focus on what matters most in their lives. She is a mom of 2, and she helps people learn to live a more well-rounded life through the use of systems. She joins me this week to show you how to set up systems for success at home.
If you are tired of feeling like you have no time for yourself, this week’s guest is here to help. Tune in to hear some of the systems Geomyra uses in her own life and her tips and tools for implementing them into your own. Hear the endless benefits of having systems in your home and how to use them to free up hours and do whatever you want in your life.
You’re listening to the Vibrant Happy Women podcast. I’m Jen Riday and on this episode we’ll be talking about setting up systems for your success at home. Stay tuned.
Hi, I'm Jen Riday. This podcast is for women who want to feel more vibrant, happy, aligned, and alive. You'll gain the emotional, physical, and spiritual tools you need to get your sparkle back and ensure that depression, anxiety, and struggle don't rule your life. Welcome to the Vibrant Happy Women Podcast.
Hey, my friends, have you ever heard the phrase, being the CEO of your home? We know CEOs have to manage people and create systems, and create efficiency so that there’s profit. Well, we can take that same mentality and bring it into our homes and create systems at home. And we all know the importance of routines and habits but using the word ‘system’ can be helpful to look at it from a different angle. What might happen in your home if you create systems for how to handle lunches, and clothes, and meals, freeing up time for the things that are really important to you?
Well, my guest today, Geomyra Pollard is going to share exactly how she does that and hopefully it will give you some great ideas. Now, before we jump into that let me share our review of the week from Dee Pippin. This person wrote, “Jen is absolutely an expert in her field. But she’s also in the trenches with you. I love listening to the podcast to continually be reminded of the ways I’m able to enrich my kids’ lives when I choose to intentionally take care of my needs.”
I love that. That is everything. Remember this, the happier you are the happier your family will be because mirror neurons. Your kids pick up on the baseline mood that you present to them. It will become their baseline mood for a time in their lives until they choose to up-level it even further. So truly the greatest gift you can give your loved ones is your own happiness. So that is why I’m here. Thank you so much, Dee Pippin for leaving that review.
Everyone else I want to hear from you, share your thoughts about the podcast, share your comments about a favorite episode at jenriday.com/review. I would love to read yours on the air.
Alright, well, so Geomyra, little known fact she told me before we started recording that Geomyra is actually a combination of George and Myra, her parents’ names. In the hospital they decided to combine them and I kind of love this, Geomyra. So Geomyra Pollard is fantastic and passionate about creating systems. And I love talking about systems. We talk about habits and morning routines but adding the word ‘systems’ makes it seem, I don’t know, like efficiency. We’re going to create efficiency.
I remember taking an industrial psychology class in college and everything in that class was about going into a factory or a workplace and finding inefficiencies in time so that things could be faster, and better, and more efficient. And I always kind of carried that with me, how could we do the same thing in a home? How could I do the same thing as a waitress? How could I do the same thing in my career, all the places I have worked and been? But it’s fascinating to think how you can do it at home. So that is our intention today, thinking about systems.
And I hope you come away with something that you want to try, that works for you and let’s go ahead and dive in.
Jen: Hey, friends. I am with Geomyra Pollard today and we’re going to be talking about systems that will save your sanity. I am so excited. Systems I feel like really lead to the ultimate success. We all know the importance of healthy habits. And we want certain outcomes and I feel like systems will get us there. So, I’m super excited to talk about this topic with Geomyra today. So, welcome to Vibrant Happy Women.
Geomyra: I love it. Thank you for having me, Jen, I’m excited. This is one of my favorite things in the world to talk about and so I’m excited and feel very honored to be on your platform to talk about systems.
Jen: Awesome. Go ahead and give us a brief introduction of who you are, how you got where you are, what you’re doing and such.
Geomyra: All the things. Yeah, so I’m Geomyra Pollard and I am a coach for creative entrepreneurs, mommas, busy bees, and people who are just trying to find tools, resources, and tips so that they can reclaim their time to ultimately focus on what matters most. I am a mom to two. I have a daughter that’s almost 12, a son that’s seven, a husband of almost 14 years. And so, in my previous life I was a wedding planner for 12 years. And then I transitioned into the world of coaching.
So, a majority of my clients are entrepreneurs, creatives, and people who also have nine to fives while they’re trying to get their business up and running. And people who just want to live a life that is filled with intention. And so, in my everyday life what I do is coach one-on-one. I have courses that allow people access so that they can just, again, focus on what matters most and spend time with the people that they love which I feel is the most important thing.
Jen: Nice. So, the ultimate outcome of systems for you would be more time with loved ones or their other outcomes? Yeah.
Geomyra: Absolutely. Their other outcomes. For me my family is everything. And so, my company, my brand is Living Well Rounded with Geomyra because over here we do not believe in balance, that work life balance thing. We feel like, and I say we because it’s a community of well rounded people. But we don’t believe work life balance exists. And so instead of trying to chase it, my principle is we get off the hamster wheel and we create your version of what it means to live well rounded.
And so, if your family is important to you, if you are in a relationship or you’re trying to find love then how do you create time to do those things? If fitness is important to you, or spirituality then let’s figure out how you can include all of those things into your everyday and how you move about this world. And so again, systems allow us the freedom to be able to create the space to do more of the things that feel good to us.
Jen: Awesome. So, systems is a word I learned mostly in entrepreneurship. You want to have systems, so things become automatic, everyone on your team knows what to do. Well, we’re going to talk today about systems in family life in particular because I would say most of my listeners are moms or they have careers where they want systems. So how would you define systems for the purpose of family life? I mean it’s kind of the same I suppose.
Geomyra: Absolutely, it is the same. And sometimes it’s interesting because when I say systems people think sometime like tech or they think just something that feels daunting. But honestly, systems are just task order, how you do things, the order in which you do things, it also is delegation. So, who’s responsible for doing certain things, especially in the household. And basically, the order in checking things off the list so that you don’t miss a beat.
And so, for me when I say creating systems it just basically means creating a process, a workflow. And something that allows us to make sure that everything gets done but it also when you do get everything done in an order and it’s written out, or somewhere on your phone or just communicated, it just ultimately means that everybody’s on the same page and that we’re not reinventing the wheel, every single week, every single day.
Jen: Totally. Now, I almost feel I hear the cries and the screams of our listeners calling out, it’s come into my mind, “But Jen, but Geomyra, we’ve tried to set up systems and habits a million times and it doesn’t work with kids.” How do you respond to that?
Geomyra: Listen, I have been there especially like I said, I was a wedding planner. I had a nine to five at the same time, two small kids, was in school getting my MBA. So, I’ve done all the things. And so, I realized that, number one, I couldn’t do all the things well by myself, do all the things, try and remember everything without just either writing it down, articulating or just trying to find shortcuts. And that’s what I get excited about, okay, how can we find little bits and pieces and things so that we can just find the time to do, again, the things that we love.
So, with kids, systems is the ultimate, that is what you need and that it sets the foundation also on how they move about when they get older. And so, example for my family, the systems that we have in place is how we do laundry, how we create our menu for the week, how we go about meal planning, and shopping, and prepping my kids’ lunches. We have a system on how I do their lunches one time a week. I’m not going into the pantry every single day to create a lunch for my children.
We’re not going in the closet every week to get my son’s uniform for school. I go in that closet one time a week, pull what we need and then that way I’m saving up time there. If you’re someone that works out which I’m trying to get my life together, Jen. So, if you’re somebody that works out, you don’t have to keep, “Oh man, where are my yoga pants, where is this, this and that?” You do it one time and I try to pull my outfits for the week and have them there. And then I also get excited when I see that pile dwindle down, okay, I actually got my butt moving and doing things.
So, with children I think when you do put the systems in place it means that you’re not feeling like you’re flying by the seat of your pants, you don’t feel overwhelmed. You just don’t feel like dang it, did I forget to do x, y, and z? If you have it written out, if you have it articulated then it definitely makes things a lot easier and frees up some of that anxiety that as moms we feel sometimes.
Jen: So, I feel like there’s another question coming through the airwaves which is, I don’t know, is this like a Star Wars theme when that planet blows up and someone across the galaxy can hear their cries? That’s what’s happening today.
Geomyra: I love it. I hear you all.
Jen: Okay. Anyway, someone out there I feel would say, “Hey, Geomyra, I’m not a systems person, I’m kind of a fly by the seat of my pants, free spirit type. I don’t know. This feels so constricting.” What’s your response to that?
Geomyra: I love this question and I don’t think anyone has asked that. So, the thing is this, if you feel things are working for you the way they’re working for you, girl, do your thing. That’s fine. But if you feel like I said, the stress, and the angst, and feeling like there has to be another way, I’m tired of feeling like I have no time for myself. I’m tired of feeling like we can’t do date nights, I’m tired of feeling like I miss my girl friends and we can’t do anything, then you need systems.
And so, if you are flying by the seat of your pants and life feels great, then man, that’s awesome. But if you are feeling it just doesn’t feel good then I think you have to stop, pause, figure out where you’re spending your time, do some evaluations there and then decide what your version of a system in your home looks like. I have systems, I’m hardcore. But for some of my clients they’re like, “You know what? I’m okay packing lunch and going into the pantry and the refrigerator every single day.”
Me, our time is very short in the morning because it takes forever for the kids to get out of the bed. So, I know that I don’t have that time. So, I’ve found another way so that I don’t have to deal with lunches every single day. So, listen, if it works for you, it works for you. But I do want to encourage someone out there listening that there is a way, there are people who have figured out ways to just steal back some of the hours of the week.
And it’s a beautiful thing when you do have that extra time and you can just deviate the time to do the things you want and to hang out and love on the people that you are.
Jen: Well said. And if you want, like Geomyra just said, if you want to free up some hours in the week, every hand is up, I know this, then you need systems, some type of system. And it might not need to be as long or detailed as the next person. But speaking of systems, if someone’s beginning with this, give us a really simple, simple like kindergarten level, so to speak, system that we could start with.
Geomyra: One that was the first thing I realized was a system back when, even before I’d had children was again, I mentioned, getting your clothes out. When I worked in corporate America I realized I was every morning going into the closet trying to find a suit, a blouse, and pants, then going into the laundry room to iron everything, then jumping in the shower and doing all that. And then I was like, “Wait a minute, this is just taking up so much time, me trying to figure out is it going to be the blue suit, black suit, whatever.”
So now I check the weather app, see what the weather is going to be and then I pick out my outfits Monday through Friday based on if I have coaching clients, or a podcast, interviews, or whatever. And I pick my outfits based off of that and then I don’t go in that closet anymore. I don’t go in the laundry room anymore. I shower, pop on my clothes, and I’m out the door. And that alone, just not having to do [inaudible] freed up a lot of time.
And again, just another shortcut, if you’re a person, you’re like, I need even more time. Well, pick out your outfits, take them to the drycleaner, let them handle it, and then you cut that step out. The job got done. It doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be the one to do it. But now you have a system on how you get dressed, handle your laundry or whatever it is as well. So, a simple thing but you will be surprised when you start tracking your time, how much you actually have reclaimed and stole back.
Jen: So, what you’re talking about is really batching. It’s another term I only learned in the entrepreneurial world. So, for example, as a podcast host I used to just record an episode here or there, and I always had one to edit. And I always had one to publish and it just seemed never ending. Then I got smart and now I’m to the point I batch quarterly. I record 13 all at once and then it’s out of my head. And it feels so much more free time. I’m sure it is. I haven’t ever sat down and measured. So, batching with your clothes and with your lunches. What are other ways that you batch at home or in life?
Geomyra: For me, let me think. So, we talked about the laundry thing, we talked about the lunch thing. I also have a podcast called Living Well Rounded. And just like you, Jen, I was like, “Okay, I need to record this.” And then you feel like the monkey on your back. So even with my upcoming season, I’m batching the season so I can just kind of like a set it and forget it like the Crockpot version of it, just doing it all once. But off the fly something else, a system, laundry for us is I wash every single day.
I never wanted to be that mom where I felt like it’s Sunday and I have 10 pounds of laundry. So, I wash every day. And one of the first hires for myself as a coaching creative was someone within my home to get back some hours of my time. So, I wash everything and then the girl that works for me, she works in our home twice a week. She is the one who’s folding, and hanging, and whatever. So, I got some of my hours back because I was tracking the time for the laundry, and it was almost a whole workday. And I was like, this is crazy.
Jen: Oh, that’s not okay.
Geomyra: No, it was crazy, between outfits for the day, my kids’ afterschool activities, pajamas, workout clothes, it was just overwhelming. And I said, “Something has to give here.” And so, when I calculated my hourly rate as a coach and a creative versus what I can pay someone else and bless them in their family by bringing them in. It was a no brainer for us.
And so, the system for how I do the laundry means that it’s always folded. It’s not something that I have to do on Sunday because on Sunday it's something I call the Sunday reset or the weekly reset depending on which day you actually decide to do it. And that’s when I do activate the system for getting out the lunches, picking out the clothes, and determining what our meals are going to be for the week.
And so, if you’re a person that orders Instacart or Shipt or something like that, that’s the day where you go through your pantry, you look in your fridge, you see if you need the produce, the milk, the eggs, whatever. And then you order it one time and you’re not just every day, “What’s for dinner?” So, you figure out the items that you need which also saves you money because you’re not just picking up stuff at Target because that used to be me. But you know what you need to order, you set down your meal plan.
I like to use this program or app called Plan to Eat. So, all my recipes and things are there. I drag and drop in the calendar, so I know what we’re going to eat and it’s very intentional because I know what I need and all the things. So honestly, any element of your life from the clothes you put on, the food you eat, the things that we do, there is always a way to activate some type of system.
Jen: So, you said Plan to Eat?
Geomyra: Yes, Plan to Eat.
Jen: Who is the creator of that?
Geomyra: I don’t know the actual person that’s behind the software but it’s literally a website.
Jen: It’s a website, okay.
Geomyra: Yeah, it’s a website. So, if you go to plantoeat.com or if you just type Plan to Eat in the app store it will pop up. And it’s great because you can put recipes from Pinterest right into it or if you have your own recipes you can type them in there. And when you’re in the grocery store and you’re like, “Oh, my gosh, does it call for baking soda or baking powder on the recipe?” You can pull it up on your phone and it’s been a gamechanger for us.
Jen: Okay, I like that idea. So, you’re batching laundry, lunches, and your meals. By the way, I’m a firm believer in daily laundry except I make my kids put it all away. Yours are almost old enough.
Geomyra: Here’s my rule, Jen, if your kid can work a cellphone, an iPad, or a remote control they can work a washing machine. So, I’ve literally had to give my daughter, she washes and puts away her own clothes. I will say that. It’s the clothes for my husband, and my son, and I that we get help. My almost 12 year old, please believe me, she’s washing, she is hanging, she is learning delicates and all the things at the same time.
Jen: That’s so good. That’s so good. Yeah, I think we underestimate how much our kids can do and still pass their classes. I mean my kids help out with some stuff and they complain but really it’s no more than half an hour a day. I think they can handle that.
Geomyra: Yeah. And the funny thing is, it’s way less than what we had to do growing up. And they get even more rewards and privileges than we ever had. But I know she can handle it. She’s a straight A student, she’s smart as a whip so I know she knows how to do that washing machine thing. She’s got it.
Jen: Yeah, sure. So, I’ve heard you have a strong focus on I’m freeing up time, I’m freeing up time. Here at Vibrant Happy Women, we talk a lot about how our thoughts are the foundation of all our actions. You have that reward always the center of your mind, I’m stealing back some time. How do you do that with your morning ritual as well? How does that help with all of this?
Geomyra: So, the morning ritual, I’m trying to think because we literally just did it a few hours ago. But our morning ritual is even the night before, what do you want for breakfast? If I’m giving them an option or a choice. I will tell them if I go to the grocery store, “Here are the things that you can have, you know, I bought croissants, we did this, this, and that. Versus, I don’t know, my son’s very indecisive. So, it’s terrible. So sometimes I’m like, “You’re going to eat what you eat”, because again they have more privilege than we ever had.
So, for myself it’s just more of we do our lunches, and remember I told you, we pick the lunches out for the week, and I put them in a Ziploc bag and then it just gets transferred into the lunchbox. But sometimes their entre item, the sandwich or whatever, I may have to make that to throw in with the chips, the juice or the whatever. So, I will do that within the morning as I’m doing their breakfast. And the load of laundry before I go downstairs to the kitchen, I’m starting the washing machine.
And if I know I’m really busy I’ll put the dirty clothes in the washing machine the night before and I set the timer so that it will almost wake me up because at six or five-thirty I hear the washing machine starting because I’ve already set it for the night before. And then when my daughter’s about to go brush her teeth I’m like, “Hey, can you put those clothes in the dryer for me?” I yell upstairs for her to do it and I haven’t even touched the laundry. So, for me it’s the laundry, a load goes in, in the morning, the lunches get finalized in the morning.
I’ll try to do some meal prep in the morning if I have to. But another step that I cut out to reclaim my time was instead of sitting and chopping, and dicing all the things, I have learned a dollar more at the grocery store to reclaim your time just buy the onions that are already chopped if you have to. Little things like that, I realize, I’m like, okay, by the time I get the chopper, by the time I get the onion, the knife, the little board thing it’s like this is too much. So, for me our morning routine is setting the tone for the day and doing as much as I can in the forefront.
Because as an entrepreneur I really try to just be at my desk and not moving around, cleaning and doing all of that. I really try to treat my business as if it is a nine to five corporate type of job. And I try to run my family like that as well where we’ll have meetings, we communicate.
I get my husband involved on the busy days where I have to tag him in, but you have to let your partner know, the people around you know where you need help. That can be your kids, it can be your partner, whoever it is, the people on your team so that you can just do your job but not feeling like you’re just burned out at the end of the day. Sometimes, going back to my morning routine, if I do get to work out I do know I have to get up a little bit earlier, but my clothes are already set out, everything’s ready to go so I’m not spending time in the morning doing that.
The key is before you lay your head down to have everything in place so that you can just hit the ground running in the morning and feel excited because everything’s already lined up for you.
Jen: The successful morning routine starts the night before, I’ve heard that said.
Geomyra: Yeah, honestly, it does for our family at least because we’re up super early and out the door super early.
Jen: So, you mentioned your Sunday.
Geomyra: So, a weekly reset which is something that I do on Sunday. I know some of my clients and other people, Monday might be a better day or Friday might be a better day. But for us Sunday is the day where we really know that we’re just gearing up for an awesome week.
Jen: Do you plan as a family or do you plan individually, come together, how do you manage that?
Geomyra: It’s an assortment. There are some things that are foundational, my daughter knows on Sundays she needs to get her clothes out for the week. She knows on Sundays she needs to get her lunches going and she has to wash her linen. So that’s a given. That’s foundational. But then it may be certain things that my husband and I will talk about our schedules. So, he’ll know again where he needs to be tapped in, where I may not be available, what appointments we have between my kids’ swim schedule, soccer, whatever, who’s taking who, where.
And it’s on our calendar, so it’s not a question of, “Well, I thought you were taking them to soccer.” “No, I’m taking them to swim.” Because it changes in our type of work that my husband and I do. So, for us it’s the conversations then the communicating, it’s making sure you have all the tools and resources for the meals. Because you know how it feels when you’re missing that one ingredient for that recipe. So just check in the pantry, refrigerators. And so, it may be some things there that we need to figure out.
And if the dog has an appointment at the vet, that’s not an every week thing, but we’ve got to fit it in. So just making sure we’ve created space for things that do pop up or things that are not in the norm and that starts with the communication in our meetings that we have casually. And again, it doesn’t have to be, “Okay, we’re at the table and we’re meeting, Sunday reset.” It’s more like, “Hey, you got a few minutes? Let me just tell you what we have going on this week. Do you think you can take this off my plate?” And then go from there.
Jen: Yeah, that’s cool. So, managing the mealtimes, you’ve got that covered, the clothes, the appointments. Then you’re freeing up all that time for, what kind of things have you found it frees up time for, I guess?
Geomyra: So, my husband and I, we’ve been together since high school. And for us, when we got engaged we were young. Our pastor at the time told us that you should always have a weekly date night. And you should not have to talk about kids or anything else, just continue to date your spouse, so it feels fun, and fresh, and all the things. So, something that is so important to us is our weekly date night. It has now turned into date day because COVID. And so, the kids are at school. But my husband, his work schedule, he’s off on Tuesday, Wednesday.
So, I’m solo on the weekend so our date night is not going to be on a Friday drinking cocktails if he has to go to work on Saturday. So, it looks different for us. But when he is off on Tuesday, Wednesday that means on a Tuesday my schedule may be blocked off because that time with him means everything to me. And so, we freed up time that now on Tuesday I’m not running around trying to do all the things. I’ve already planned knowing that that is our time together.
So, the systems have allowed us to free up date time. My husband and my children, they do this thing called snack party where when my daughter was two because of my husband’s work schedule, he wanted to have intentional time with her, a date with her so she just had one-on-one time with dad. And so, they get all the junk food that he allows them to have and then he handles the dinner, and then they watch a movie or do a fun activity. And then I may work late on that Tuesday after they do their snack. They’re doing their own thing, I’m not invited.
Jen: That’s great.
Geomyra: Yeah, I’m not invited. But it’s cool because I know that may be a day that I work late because I don’t have to worry about dinner now. I don’t have to worry about all of that. He’s focused on that because he knows on the weekends that I’m by myself, so it works out. And then I’m a firm believer in just hanging out with your friends. We’re moms. We’re wives. We’re career women and all the things. But I want to also have a good time and I want to hang out with my friends.
And so, I make sure I have time to just go to the mall, grab some drinks, dinner, whatever with my girl friends without having to just be a mom or wife in that moment. I can just be me, just be Geomyra and just hang out with my friends and talk about Bravo TV or whatever it is. And so that stuff is important to me. And so, I really try to plan for it and not make excuses for why it cannot happen. I make a plan, and ditch excuses because it is important to me.
And if it is important to you, my mom used to tell me, people make time for what they want to make time for, and people spend their money on what they want to spend their money on. So, if it’s important to you let your words and your actions be in alignment. Don’t just say, “I really wish.” Well, figure it out because people have figured it out but if it’s important, girl friend, you will figure it out.
Jen: We’ll leave it right there. That’s so great. Figure out what’s important, make time for it, it’s as simple as that. And what’s not important is Netflix and all the other wasters of time, yeah.
Geomyra: Yeah. But you know what though, Jen? To piggyback on that, if you’re like, “You know what? I really just want to sit and watch TV.” I don’t watch a lot of TV at all. But I’ve said to my husband, “I just really want to watch TV today.” He’s like, “Oh, okay.” That was important to me. So, I figured out what I needed to clear so I could watch it.
Jen: I wasn’t trying to make a universal judgment on too much Netflix.
Geomyra: Absolutely. I tell my clients the same thing, Netflix and chill, girl friend, we’ve got to ditch that if you want to advance in your career of do whatever. We might need to alleviate some of the things that are not moving us forward for sure.
Jen: Right. Fantastic. So, if our listeners want to learn more, follow you, where should they go?
Geomyra: So, on Instagram my handle is at @I Am Living Well Rounded. And then my website is geomyra.com, I always say it’s a blessing to have a unique name because it is my domain name. And then it’ll take you to all of the things that we have working and exciting things that we have coming up as well.
Jen: Awesome. Well, thank you so much for being here. I appreciate it.
Geomyra: Thank you, Jen, this was awesome.
Jen: Take care.
Alright, I hope that inspired you to figure out at least one new system you can try out. I always recommend starting small, get that one system in place until it’s a habit and then add to it. Start simple. So, for example, for your morning ritual I always like to recommend the five step B.E. H.E.R. morning ritual which stands for breathe, exercise, hydrate, embody and read something inspiring. One minute of each, five minute system, voila, you just juiced yourself up for the day, boosting that happiness that you want to share with others.
You can do the same thing, create acronyms for yourself, you can have systems for everything. I really like Geomyra’s idea of the Sunday reset. I do my week at a glance often on Sundays but this idea of actually planning out the clothes, the meals, the lunches, every little piece kind of seems cool. So, you could say all systems go ready for the week. And then you count down and the week begins, kind of like NASA, why not?
Anyway, I am so grateful you listened. I hope you found it helpful, and I will be back again next week with another fantastic episode. Until then make it a vibrant, happy, systematic week. Take care.
If you enjoy this podcast, you have to check out the Vibrant Happy Women Club. It’s my monthly group coaching program where we take all this material to the next level and to get you the results that will blow your mind. Join me in the Vibrant Happy Women Club at jenriday.com/join.