January 8th, 2014
What does getting organized mean?
For some it can be clearing out paper or things, for others it may mean reducing the clutter in their head or putting a stop to double booking or missed appointments. The easiest way to get organized is to make a plan. Where do you make or keep your plan? On a calendar or planner, of course! Writing (typing for the digital folk) on a calendar makes you more aware of your time. This is the same way keeping a food diary makes you more aware of what you are putting in your mouth.
What can you do to improve time management?
Use one calendar. If you are not using a calendar, start. Whether you prefer a paper planner or an electronic, digital calendar, it has to be one that is mobile. The key to success using a calendar is it has to be one you are comfortable carrying with you. When you are making an appointment with a business contact, a friend or the dentist or doctor, you need to be able to consult your calendar. You may forget about the appointment or the specifics of the appointment by the time you get home or back to the office or lose the scrap of paper or reminder card. Smartphones have built-in calendars and many of them allow you to speak your appointments. Your device adds the appointment to your calendar. Digital planners allow you to set visual and audible reminders. They can act as a digital assistant keeping you on track.
If you are using both a paper and digital calendar, pick one and stick with it. Using both can cause confusion and add unnecessary time. Using one calendar avoids having to look in two places to determine your schedule and the risk of double booking.
Before starting each day (could be the night before or in morning), write down your three most important tasks (MITs) for the day. There may be more than three but these are the three things that must get done. It allows you to build them into your day rather than panicking at the end of the day.