Tag Archives: to-do

4 Must-Know Steps for Following Through

Planner and iPhone by koalazymonkeyBelow are the steps to making a powerful list that will offer you confidence that you are doing what you need to be doing, when you need to be doing it.

1) Write your list

Your first step is to write down all the tasks you can foresee having to do today and in the future—this is your master task list. Tasks that you don’t see doing anytime soon can be put on a “Someday” list.

Once you’ve chosen the specific tasks you wish to accomplish today, write them in your planner and organize your list by context. Simply put your work tasks at the top, your home tasks at the bottom and any errands or on-the-go tasks in the middle of your list. Some individuals like to go a step further and differentiate their contexts by using different colored inks.

2) Categorize your tasks by urgency and importance

This is an important step because it ultimately determines the path of your productivity.

Categorize your tasks with a coding system, using letters and numbers:

  • Scan through your list and select items that absolutely must be done today. Assign those the letter A. Be sure to be selective here—these are strictly time-sensitive tasks that must get done today.
  • Review the list for tasks that need to get done and assign the letter B to those. While not urgent, B-level tasks include the most important steps you take toward reaching your goals. You must get them done, but you won’t suffer consequences if they’re not completed today.
  • Put the letter C by items that are neither urgent nor important. These are items you want to do, but they can wait for another day. C-level tasks are the expendable part of your daily plan.

3) Give your tasks order

Now, number your tasks. Number each task in an order that suits your daily flow. Take into consideration your own patterns of productivity, daily energy swings, anticipated locations, and how one task affects another.

As you complete your list organization, it’s important to keep in mind that new tasks will undoubtedly pop up as you go about your day. Use the A-B-Cs and 1-2-3s of your list as a decision scale for choosing where this new task fits in. For example, you may have to decide if returning a phone call (a “B” task) is more important than meeting a project deadline (an “A” task).

4) Follow through on your list

The final step in prioritizing your list deals with your own behavior as you go through the day. The best course of action is for you to honor the priorities you’ve assigned to your tasks. By being impeccable with your word, you will enjoy better productivity and balance in your life.

Let us know if this method of prioritization works for you, and be sure to include new tips of your own.

Get more tips on planning, organizing and productivity for every facet of your life by visiting the AT-A-GLANCE Success Center.

 

in order to select the planning system that’s right for you, you must weigh the pros and cons of each system against each other.

This Election Day, Cast Your Vote for Paper or Digital…or BOTH!

Today is Election Day across the United States. First and foremost, we encourage everyone to go out to the polls and exercise your democratic right to vote!

Second, we want to make you aware of another “election” in which all of us participate—the election of using a paper planning system or digital planning system. Many of you have already “voted” your choice, but there are a lot of individuals who are torn over which system is best for them.

Much like preparing to vote, in order to select the planning system that’s right for you, you must weigh the pros and cons of each system against each other. To help you select a winner, we’ve provided you with some of the keys points to consider when selecting a planning system. Continue reading

Easy and Effective Goal Setting: Part 3—Break It Down

Easy and Effective Goal Setting: Part 3—Break It Down

For the past two weeks, we’ve looked at a simple goal-setting method that will carry you from your goals to tasks in a few easy steps. It’s called “Building the Bridge.” Following is Part 3 of the four-part series.

In this section of our goal-setting series, we get down to the real meat and bones: the formation of tasks that will inspire action. We call this important step “Breaking It Down.”

It shouldn’t surprise you that procrastination is the root of most failed goals. Getting started is half the battle. And, when it comes to goals, most procrastination comes from either one of three causes:

  1. You don’t know where to begin
  2. The task seems too big and daunting
  3. You’re not motivated to do the work

Continue reading

Hybrid planning: digital plus paper

10 Apps to Save Busy Professionals Time

Editor’s Note: We welcome Elizabeth Bowman of Innovatively Organized as a guest blogger this week. In today’s digital world, we frequently discuss how the combination of paper and digital planning (i.e., hybrid planning) is an optimal path for most individuals to take in order to stay productive—Elizabeth was kind enough to provide us with her Top 10 tools to help you with that productivity when using your digital devices.

With all the productivity apps available to purchase and download, it’s common to experience app overload. How do you know which apps will actually help you save time? Over the years, our team has compiled a list of our top ten time saving apps. Continue reading

Keep Your Family Calendar Balanced for Back-to-School

Keep Your Family Calendar Balanced for Back-to-School

Back-to-school is not only one of the toughest times to get your family organized, but it’s also the most important time to be organized.

There’s one tool you can use during back-to-school season that will outshine all the others.

It’s the trusty family calendar, and it can easily become the most important tool in the house. Continue reading

Back-to-School Organization Tips

The ABCs to Getting Organized for Back-to-School!

[Editor’s note: Following is a guest blog post by Leslie Josel]

Back-to-School is right around the corner! It’s the perfect time to take stock and get your student organized for the new school year. Here are some sure fire tips for starting off the school year on the right track.

Use an academic planner to stay organized. Whether you use a paper planner or electronic calendar, make sure your planner is set up as a grid system so you can see your week at a glance. Record all your after school activities, weekend commitments, class assignments and projects so you can “visualize” your available time to get your homework and studying done. Include a row in the planner for “Organizing” so that you can plan your locker, knapsack and binder clean outs. Maintenance is key to getting AND staying organized. Continue reading