Not gonna lie, I’m kind of a crazy person when it comes to planners. And lists. Oh god, I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love making lists. That’s a topic for another day though. For today’s post, we’re gonna focus on planners and discuss how they can help increase your daily productivity to keep you on track all day, every day.
- a financial planner (to keep track of my income/business expenses)
- an editorial planner for social media clients
- a blog planner for both Sensible Stylista and Nomtastic Foods (to keep track of campaigns, blog posts, etc.)
- a dog mom planner (to keep track of all of Daisy’s meds and appointments)
- a personal planner (for meals, exercise, journaling, etc.)
As you can see, each one has a designated purpose, and I review them daily to stay on top of my to-do list. It’s so important to have a clear idea of what you need to accomplish. That way, you can stay on task without wasting time.
Organize Your To-Do List in the AM
Assuming that you’re diligent with your planner, each day should have at least something written. Review your notes and figure out what’s due (ie. for work, for school, for your personal life, whatever) before mapping out your day.
If you feel like your to-do list is never-ending, it’s either way too long or you’re not effectively managing your time. Use all three sections (monthly, weekly and daily) consistently, and be specific with tasks to stay on schedule.
Prioritize, Prioritize, and Prioritize
Crank out your to-do list, but number everything in terms of importance post brain-dump. You have a finite amount of energy so be strategic when you plan your work day. I’ve found that I’m sharpest from 6AM-1PM and 5-10PM so I tackle my more difficult tasks then. However, I always get tired around 2-3PM so I either take a breather or do something less taxing.
Color Code Tasks
I recently purchased erasable pens (currently $9.99 for a 10-pack), and they’re a godsend! When you have a ton scheduled, it can be hard to decipher black pen from more black pen. Hence, I use different colors for different clients. And for my personal use, pressing tasks are written in red vs. non-urgent items in blue.
I also like to color code my financial records – it may seem extra, but as a self-employed freelancer, taxes are SO much easier now that I’m organized. If you’re in the same boat as me, give it a try. I promise it’ll facilitate the whole process!
Choose one color for income and another for deductibles. If you want to be hardcore like me, use different colors for sub-deductibles as well, ie. green for travel, purple for ad spend and so on and so forth. Keep up with this daily and complete a monthly summary to keep track of your finances like a pro.
Set Goals on the Regular
I suggest making weekly, monthly and yearly goals using your planner. That way, you never lose sight of the full picture, while cranking out actionable tasks on the regular to help you achieve all that you want and more. I sit down every Sunday and make a list of goals I have that week along with a daily to-do list the night before.
Schedule Me Time
Burnout is all too real, which is why it’s so important to schedule R&R. We humans need things to look forward to, and clearing your head is necessary. Think about how much harder it is to focus when you’re functioning on 2 hours of sleep versus 8.
You’ll experience the same kind of fatigue if you go hardcore 24/7 so pencil in times to turn your brain off and just veg out. Your productivity will skyrocket as a result!
Alright friends, I hope you guys enjoyed today’s latest! I’m categorizing it as a “career” post since I’m discussing productivity – if you liked this, make sure you check out “60 Motivational Quotes to Start Your Day” and “How-to Make Sure Your Week Doesn’t Suck” as well. Let me know what you thought by leaving a comment below and stay tuned for more content coming your way. I recently took a bunch of outfit pics with Sung so expect a style post next!