You may recognize this image from my review of Productivity 2.0. I used it again as a reminder that planning is the foundation for being organized.
While having Evernote and Nozbe to file and keep track of tasks is wonderful, my system needs me to manage it weekly. In fact, any system needs to be managed weekly at the minimum to succeed. Whatever you set up for yourself to manage your life, make a commitment to maintaining the system. No one system is perfect. They all need tweaking to fit whatever season we’re in. Before you try something new, make sure you’re actually using your system.
If you want to get a handle on your system, take care of items as they come up. Bills in the mail are opened and filed in the bill folder. Papers from school are reviewed that day for dated tasks or forms that need to be filled out and sent back.
5 to 10 minutes here and there to handle items saves time in the long run. It’s okay to collect a few items to do together as long as you commit to doing them and the items are related. In other words, don’t do bills and school paperwork at the same time. Do one or the other; you’ll make fewer mistakes and stay focused.
Always be ready to make a decision to do one of 3 things:
1. Enter an activity in your calendar.
2. Enter a dated task in your to do list.
3. File in the appropriate folder for your weekly review.
My weekly review generally takes about 30 to 45 minutes if I’m tagging and filing items for Evernote and Nozbe as they come up. I am proud to say that I am now adding notebook info to emails I forward to Evernote to save myself reviewing the information. Next step – adding tags. Hmm, I think I need to make a list in ListPlanIt of my Evernote notebooks and tags and post it at my desk.
You can use my list to fit your system. Basically you need to process your email, paper inbox, bills, calendar(s), menu plan, and project lists. These are all areas we need to handle in our lives. The differences are the details whether you have paper bills or make payments automatically.
[ ]Reconcile in Quicken
[ ]check school communications online
[ ]In box (Paper collection box)
[ ]Weekly Tickler file
[ ]Calendar – Paper
[ ]Calendar – Google
[ ]!Inbox notebook in Evernote
[ ]Project Notebooks in Evernote
[ ]Next Action lists in Evernote
[ ]Menu Plan with Kitchen prep list
How do you manage your life and commitments?
Disclosure: To help pay for running this blog, I am a ListPlanIt Affiliate and a Nozbe Affiliate.