But for planning out my days so that I can see where I need to be and when, and what time is free, I use a written out plan. I have it on my desk so I can see it. The act, for me, of writing it out, helps me organize my thoughts for the day. Let me show you a quick visual of what I have developed, over time, that works for me, then I can explain my process a bit.
The page above is just a small checklist of weekly to dos, that are the same every day and every week. I have a morning routine that helps me get motivated and moving in the morning, things I don't want to forget. So if I am having trouble getting going in the morning I just look at my checklist and start at the top. The checklist underneath is something I have developed over the last few years of the basics I need to get done for the house, so that I feel at ease. When my house is cluttered, I feel like my brain is cluttered. I do have other things I do on top of that, but these are the must dos for me, the basics for my sanity.
The following two pages are my weekly schedule. I sit down Sunday evening and fill in any appointments I have, scheduled meetings, dentist appointments and exercise. If you look at the bottom of the page you will see where I keep my to do lists. I have these separated by just a few categories. It helps me keep my brain organized. I have a hard time remembering everything, so I have always kept to do lists. With this, I find it easier if I keep it separated into categories. When I do something I cross it off. Each week I move what isn't completed to the new week and add more as I need. These are ongoing to do lists.
If I have time in my day that is not scheduled, that time is when I finish up to do items. So I look at my schedule every day. Think about where I am going to be and add in to do items. If I am going to be at the Democratic Party Headquarters, I will look at Committee items and see what I can get done. If it is a nice day outside I will pick outdoor to do items to finish up. It is simple but it works for me. I do have a separate page for projects. Those are larger projects I am working on that have many tasks. So I just write out those tasks so I can see it all clearly.
I know many people can keep it all in their head, I am not one of those people. And for years I just used to do lists. I had sticky notes everywhere: on my desk, the kitchen table, my computer. So one day a couple of years ago, I just decided to put them all into one place. In doing this month after month I found there was a pattern to what I was doing. So I created these pages to save time, since I was writing the same things out day after day. A short cut for me, saves a few minutes. And I just add them to a binder I have here at home. I have found that I forget less, and get more done. If any of these help you, wonderful. Or maybe it will spark an idea, that is great. If this type of organization isn't for you, that is great too. Also there are so many planners out there you can buy, if you like. Personally, I just couldn't find one that was what I needed. I needed the space to fit my needs, so I created my own. But there are plenty out there at your local Staples store.
Here are links to the full size pdf pages if you would like to give any of them a try:
Hope that answers some of the questions I have been getting. Have a great weekend all!