Happy Monday loves! This weekend I really focused on relaxing and taking time for myself and it has rejuvenated me for the work week!
Today I want to share with you a planner I use and swear by. It really helps me design my days, tame my to do list and achieve my goals. I think it is especially helpful for working from home because it has great ways to prioritize and organize each day.
The planner is called the Full Focus Planner. Each planner book is one quarter long (i.e. 3 months). The first few pages are how to plan your quarter at a high level. The rest of the planner is week by week and day by planning.
First lets talk about the beginning of each planner. The first pages include: 1. Annual goal setting
2. Monthly calendars
3. Ideal week planning
4. Rolling quarters planning and,
5. Rituals planning (i.e. what you do at the beginning and end of each day)
There is a lot to these pages so I am just going to talk about the top 3 things I use. I highly utilize the ANNUAL GOALS, IDEAL WEEK, and RITUALS planning. The annual goals are just that, annual goals. There is plenty of space and ways to track your progress. While these books are only a quarter long, I keep my annual goals the same quarter to quarter. This allows me to reevaluate and check in on my annual goals quarterly when I update my new planner.
The ideal week planner is great because it allows you to take a step back and look at your week at a high level. You can really get creative with how you want to document this page, using colors or shapes or whatever you want. This page allows you to box off your days and show when you want to being doing certain tasks. This really helped me organize my days.
The ritual planner breaks down the day into 4 categories: morning, work start up, work shut down, and evening. Here you plan out what you do during those times. After doing this a few times I learned that having a shut down and start up routine has really helped me stay organized and establish a solid routine.
The next part of the planner are the weekly previews and daily pages. Each week there are preview pages. These pages help you do two things:
1) review the prior week and
2) set goals for the upcoming week.
It also helps you identify key projects or tasks to accomplish that week. I love that you can then review the prior weeks tracking your progress on your top tasks. You can journal what went well and what you will improve on. The weekly previews include both personal and professional goals. I love this because it helps me prioritize my personal goals as well.
Finally, the daily pages. There are two pages for each day throughout the quarter. The first page has a space to make your list of things to do that day. Each day you identify the top 3 tasks you need to get done. Identifying my top 3 tasks has been a major game changer for me. For one thing it helps me prioritize and know what I need to get done that day. Often times I go into a day thinking I'll be working on one thing but by lunch time a million new things come up that take my attention away from my original list. Having 3 things from my list as top tasks to get done that day help me still check things off my to do list while also handling all the other things that come up. Identifying top 3 tasks also helps me evaluate my day. I know I did a good job and I feel accomplished at the end of the day when I can check those 3 things off my list. The other part of the page is a schedule where you can write out your day's schedule and meetings. Pro tip, I always put what time my start up and shut down rituals will be done at. The second daily page is a full page available for notes, so this is free space to be used as needed however you want. I use it as a distractions list. If I am working and think of something else, a distraction, I'll write it down and revisit it later.
As you can see these planners are not simply daily checklists. They are journals, organizers, and a goal setting and tracking aid. I have been using these planners for a year now and they have helped me tremendously. Not to mention the colors and patterns are adorable! Full Focus Planner also has a podcast and multiple courses or seminars you can take to learn more about achieving goals and taming your to do list.
Give these planners a try and let me know how you like them!
Enjoy your Monday!