I have always hated being inefficient with my time. As a wife, mom, business owner, outdoor enthusiast, runner, musician, and 500 other things I’m sure I’m forgetting to mention, my time is precious.
Same as you, dear reader.
Spending time on something that could either take less time or trying to clarify what is even needed is infuriating for me. It always has been (sorry-not-sorry past bosses that were probably so irritated at my questions).
This is why I am so focused on the importance of planning. Without a plan, without an idea of what needs to happen to reach our goals, dreams, vision…. We may as well just ride the ocean wherever it takes us, never aiming for the big wave that will take us to shore. (I have no idea where that analogy came from… but you get the picture).
So, here we are, with our quarterly and weekly planning all worked out (see THESE BLOGS), how do we use that and make sure our daily plans are the best and most efficient use of our time?
Step 1 – Find a time of the day to do your daily planning. Either right at the beginning of the day or the day before.
Step 2 – Create a master list of all your tasks, and projects, that are upcoming, use post-its, note-cards, homing pigeons, whatever. But do something that really gets in your head. Make sure to check messages, emails, slacks, PM tool
Step 3 – Look at your list of tasks and projects and categorize them into the Eisenhower matrix.
|Urgent / Important||Not Urgent / Important|
|Urgent / Not Important||Not Urgent / Not Important|
Quadrant 1 High priority and urgent:
- anything that needs to be done for upcoming meetings
- Anything for an upcoming deadline
- Anything to fix an “emergency”
Quadrant 2 High priority and not-urgent
- Not part of day-to-day ops but help you get closer to goals and typically requires more focus.
- These are strategic projects, development, or something that is going to make your life better
- Try to fit only 1-2 of these a day( in fact 2 is way too much)unless there is nothing urgent and important
Quadrant 3 Urgent/not important
- These are typically admin things or things that can be delegated to someone else
- Unexpected texts or phone calls
- Social media replies.
- Maybe can be done during buffer time or admin time.
Quadrant 4 Non-Urgent/not important
- If anything falls in this category, it’s not going to make your list at all. Fugetaboutit.
Step 4: Looking at your existing schedule, fit the tasks in priority order leaving buffer time in between. This week means you probably will ONLY have 3-4 “things” a day that will get done from your task list.
THIS IS OKAY!
Step 4.5: (This is only a half step because you don’t HAVE to do it, but I recommend doing it for those of you who need a bit more processing time to fully commit to getting things done that day).
Write down those three tasks, or highlight them in your list. I have a day planner on my iPad that I write down my priorities for the day being those 3 to 5 tasks/projects that will be done. Then I go onto step 5.
Step 5: Go into your Task Management System (If you don’t have one… get one, and if you don’t know which one to get, I recommend THIS ONE (ClickUp) and make your top tasks are showing up on your worklist for that day.
You can also add the tasks in the calendar view as well.
** Recommendation – Create an “ideal work day/week” within your preferred calendar (Google Calendar, Apple Calendar, Microsoft Calendar) and import that calendar into ClickUp.
Check out how to do this in my YouTube video below.