I have decided that it’s time to get organised. Not just the type of ‘organising’ you do when you’re procrastinating from your real work, like when you decide to colour code all your washi tape or go through your yarn stash and sort it by length or project. Yeah, those sorts of things can leave you feeling like you’ve accomplished something but in the end, are they really helping you get the important business off your plate and done effectively in a smaller timeframe? Probably not.
For the next few weeks I am going to be having a go at some particular time saving and scheduling plans. I’ll show you what I’m up to at the beginning of the week and how I fared by the end of it accompanied by a little bit of a critique on the practice.
I think there will be one or a mixture of a few ideas which are going to positively affect not only my productivity for my business but also my mental and physical health. Managing my time better means I can get the things done which matter to me and allow me breathing space and time to look after myself better too.
Searching through the internet treasure trove of business blogs I found a few things I’d like to try and have adapted them to my own tastes and needs.
The first of the techniques I thought I’d try was the Morning Brain Dump which I found over here. It’s a great way to get all that swirling, whirling mess of ideas and to-dos out of your head so you can focus on what you need to achieve.
I’ve made a handy printable for you which you can download below if you’d like to trial this along with me.
Morning Brain Dump (pdf)
I recommend laminating it and using a dry-erase marker which you’ll be able to wipe off as you get your tasks done.
The idea is to get everything down for the day before you’ve even answered your first email or checked your social media or online store. It’s a focussing exercise which allows more space in your mind for getting the things done which are vital that day.
I arranged things in order of importance on the printable sheet:
Must – these are the things which have to get done today and I can’t push to the side
Should – I know I need to get these things done but they aren’t super time sensitive for today
Could – I could get these things done and they would help my business but I don’t really have a timeline for them
Want to – these are the things which we usually do first because they’re fun, new or big picture stuff but often aren’t the best use of our time if the other tasks aren’t done first
The way I’m going to work things this week is to wake up, write down my tasks in these four categories then keep the sheet on the desk next to me as I work. Once a task is done, I’ll just erase it off.
I read that it’s probably a good idea to have a bit of a mix between the three last categories so that I feel like I’ve achieved goals in numerous areas with different emotions attached to them.
In my mind, the things Must do are probably going to be a bit arduous or boring. That’s how it goes sometimes! These might be things like my account keeping, photographing products and updating my online store or pricing stock for my retail space.
The Should quadrant might even be more painful that the first one since I know they need to be done but I know I CAN push them aside. I think I’ll try to get at least one or two of these done in the day too.
The Could area will have things that I might do to make my life easier in the future but I can definitely wait to get these done another day. In saying this, I will definitely try to get one done so I am looking after ‘Future Kath’.
Then comes the Want To quadrant. As I said, I think I’m going to ‘Want To’ do everything in this section and therefore, perhaps it should be the reward of a great day to start on one of these tasks!
There you have it, I’ll give it a go and let you know how I went by the end of the week and any comments, successes or pitfalls I think there are surrounding this scheduling technique.
You can either play along with your own sheet or just watch and see what happens for me!
If you do want to join me in this experiment, download the sheet and laminate, or just print out a new one for each day of the week. Share yours on Instagram with the hashtag #CTBrainDump so we can check out how you’re going!
Comment below if you have any questions or suggestions for my week of the Morning Brain Dump.