Tuesday 23 April 2013

My Weekly 'To Do' Folder

This week, I have been sharing with you how I organise my Command Central Station in my home.  This area is just vital to us staying organised with paperwork, plus it provides some much needed solutions to the clutter that would otherwise accumulate on the kitchen bench!

My Weekly 'To Do' Folder is another part of this station that I couldn't live without, so today I will unpack how I have set it up, and how it helps me to stay on track with my weekly jobs.

Earlier this year, I showed you a page that I created for my planner that helped me to prioritise and list all of the jobs I wanted to achieve in a week.  You can see that page here.

After a few weeks of being on maternity leave at home and not really needing to use my old planner other than for these lists, I decided that I would create a new template to suit a clipboard folder instead.  This would be more portable and look more streamlined on the buffet that serves as my Command Central Station too.  So, I put my planner away, as I just wasn't using it anymore, for another time when I feel like I need it, and had some crafty fun decoupaging this originally plain clipboard.

(It almost seems to pretty to cover with a sheet of paper!)

On the new template I wanted to incorporate all of the things that were working on my previous weekly planners, plus add in some new things.  This is what I came up with:

Every Friday, I sit down with the planner page from the week just passed and a new blank one.  I then reflect on the week and see how I have gone with my 3 goals (the original post about my weekly planner discusses choosing and breaking down my goals in more depth - read about it here).

If I don't achieve my goals, I ask myself 'Why not?', and aim to overcome those obstacles in the next week.  Sometimes I didn't achieve them because I was too busy focussing on another big goal, sometimes it is because I didn't break the project down into small enough pieces and I became too overwhelmed to even start, or other times it is because I let my perfectionism stand in the way and I just put it off because I thought I wouldn't have done it 'perfectly' enough.  I think it is really important to identify what is blocking you from achieving your goals, so that you can make a plan to work through it in the future and feel success!

I then look at each of my Jobs lists for my current goals on the new planner sheet, plus I have general To Do lists listed here too.  You can see that all of my jobs are broken into categories - I find this helps to keep things in manageable 'chunks'.

If there were any jobs that I didn't complete from the current week, I write them on the new sheet.  Then I have a think about what else I would like to achieve in that goals/general area in the week ahead and write it down.  I only ever choose 3/4 things per area - this makes it achievable.  If I do more than what is listed, then that is great!  Otherwise sticking to my list is still an achievement in itself.

Then I look down to the weekly overview.

I check my calendar, and add in any appointments that I have onto the relevant day in the 'Plans' column.  Then I write down any jobs that I need to specifically do on a set day in the 'To Do' column.  I usually write myself paperwork jobs to do on Wednesdays, as this is my Desk Day.  And I usually write myself errands to be done on Thursdays, as this is my Errand Day.  I record my blog post plans in the next column, obviously called 'Blog'.  I aim for 3 blogs per week (Monday/Wednesday/Friday), but if I have extras I slot them in too.

Next are two columns I added in to help me stay a bit healthier.  The Water column is to tally how many glasses of water I drink a day.  And the Exercise column is to tick whether or not I have exercised that day. Neither of these columns have been hugely used, but having the visual there reminds me of what I should be doing ;)

Finally, I have my Weekly Household Chores in the last column.  Using the jobs I have set up on my Home Routines App, I work through these chores each week.  Having them on this planner sheet reminds me that I need to do them, and then I just tick them off once done.

This one sheet really does list everything that I need to do in a week, without it being one huge overwhelming list of jobs!  I love that everything is broken into categories, and jobs are listed as individual tasks, not just the name of a big project that I wouldn't have a hope in completing in one week alone.

If you are following along with my Finishing Off Friday posts, you will have seen how much I do manage to achieve in a week, and I do believe this planner page really helps to keep me on track each week.  As with any organisation system, things constantly change and evolve as your life changes, so I am sure that I will be updating this system in the future - especially once the baby arrives and I have less time for project work.

So, even if the planner page does change in the future, this is what works for me now and I am thrilled with all I have achieved in the first four months of this year!  Everyone needs to find a balanced system that works for their own situation, as everyone's lives are unique.  I hope that by sharing how I break up my week, this helps you to work out how to break up yours into manageable pieces too :)  

Read about My Command Central Station here.

Read about how I organise the file folders in my Command Central Station here.


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