When I write my monthly report, one of the items I note is busywork.
Busywork, in my definition, are tasks which are repetitive, boring, and could/or/should be something I hire out. Mostly though, it’s work I don’t enjoy doing: bookkeeping, production pattern making (which is different from design), making markers, reading legal documents, building online products, writing POs, etc.
I probably average 5-10 hours a month of busy work, which is low, I’d guess, but those 5-10 hours have the additional draining effect of sapping energy from creative output. I have good reasons for ‘keeping’ each of the tasks which I keep. For example, bookkeeping: we have no employees, so the actual bookkeeping task only takes an hour a month. Doing it keeps me plugged into the financials of the business in the way reading a PO might not.
Reading legal documents: not realistically something you can job out if you want to know what’s in them.
Building online products: an extremely detail oriented task. I’d have trouble trusting someone else to do it, but realistically, this should be the next one to go.
Writing POs: extremely complicated because it requires huge background knowledge of the business. Unrealistic to hire out anytime in the foreseeable future.
Production pattern-making and markers: we’re in an ongoing process of digitizing these, so this task diminishes every season. Thankfully.
Housekeeping stuff, such as personal bills and life maintenance don’t fall into the busywork category. These are a direct reflection of lifestyle choices, and important to stay conscious of. Unlike business projects, you only have one “lifestyle” (I mean, you are only alive in the singular right now, right) – so the level of maintenance required is finite.