“Nobody ever wrote a plan to be broke, fat, lazy, or stupid. Those things are what happen when you don’t have a plan.” – Larry Winget
Planning is a terrific way to work efficiently, particularly if you have a lot of things to do in a given day. Planning allows us to budget, set up an exercise routine, organize our tasks so that they fit together in our day, and provide us a way to run errands efficiently. Since this is a really important practice, what time of day should we plan?
The articles online are mixed. Some folks recommend planning at night before you go to bed; others recommend that you plan in the morning. I think it is really about personal preference. I tend to be a “night owl” and plan at night. It’s quiet in my home, with little chance of interruption at night so I can think through what I need to do and organize myself.
There are also some mixed reviews on planning daily or planning for the week. I like planning the week in advance and adjusting daily, based on the unpredictable things that pop up from time-to-time. Again, I think this is a personal preference. I like weekly planning because it allows me to examine what’s up for the week and plan my “must do tasks” around my “have to do tasks” and my “nice to do” tasks. This brings me to another part of planning–prioritization.
If you’ve been in the business world for the last 20 years, you’ve probably seen a technique of using letters and numbers to prioritize your tasks. A1 would be your most important task for the day, followed by A2, A3, B1, B2, etc. You get the idea. I guess I follow this methodology but alter it to myself. In other words, there are certain things I have to do (workout, read, write, and plan), there are things I must do, pay a bill, drop off a package at the post office, go out to dinner with my folks, or get a birthday present. Then there are things that are nice to do, like going to a coffee shop or the library and doing some writing or just relaxing while I surf the web.
The “must do” items are tasks I deem most important, while “have to do” is next in order, and “nice to do” is last in my order of priorities. “Must do” items typically have a deadline attached to them, like filing taxes, doing an assignment for school, and so on. My “have to” tasks are the things I strive to do every day, like post to this blog, go to the gym and knock out my workout, reading and writing. “Nice to do” tasks are watching a movie or TV show on Netflix or Amazon. The “Nice to do” tasks are the fun things we want to do when we have time.
Well, that’s it for today folks. I could talk on and on about this topic because I enjoy benefiting from efficiency and accomplishing things. I also like systemic processes. I call these rituals. Rituals are nothing more than a collection of habits we do at certain times of the day. More on these topics later.
Have a great Friday the 13th!
Until next time…