Once I have a monthly plan, I take it down to the level of the week. I do this on Friday afternoons, and set up what I want to accomplish over the week. This doesn’t take the form of a must-do list. This is merely looking at what is on the schedule, and deciding what my targets are.
First Step, Put In The Activities
My first step for the week is to put in the scheduled activities. I look at my calendar, my husband’s calendar, and my daughter’s calendar, since my husband and I have to coordinate to get my daughter where she needs to be.
This overview of the week lets me know what I will have time for, allowing me to set a reasonable expectation for myself. Otherwise, I will go into super-hero mode and try and do everything.
It also gives me an idea of what days may have to have routine tasks bumped to another day.
Special Days On the Fly
I like to inject some special time in my schedule as well.
Routine Items Order Up!
The next thing I do is print out my weekly overview from Remember the Milk. I put in the routine items that need to be done. Some things are daily, like habits I am trying to get down; some things are weekly, like housework tasks and Girl Scout emails; and some things occur less frequently, like the reminder to change my contacts or swap out the batteries in the smoke detectors.
Looking at the routine items as I am writing them in gives me a perspective. If the activities are heavy, I’m not going to have time to do the routine items, so they get distributed over the rest of the week. If there are no activities, but the routine items are heavy (like all the ones that came up on Jan 1), I choose the ones that I think can be done, and distribute the rest.
This allows me to balance the load between what needs to be done in a routine fashion, and those things I want to do to move my projects folders. It lifts me out of the trenches of the day-to-day into a different level.
The Target Is Up
My next step is to take a new piece of paper and make my target list. I go through my project list, considering if there is stuff that must be done this week, or just things I would like to do to move it forward. Even if there are multiple things on the list for a project, I list them.
As things come in during the week, I put them on the target list too. For example, I found out today that I have to run out to Girl Scout Council offices to pick up some paperwork relevant to cookie sales. This is on my list because I have to do it, but the date isn’t fixed.
Having a target list lets me plan my day. Every night I sit down and select the three things that I must do, from the target list or pressing issues from the repeating tasks. Usually I aim for the target list, because the repeating tasks always seem to get done, even if I do the projects. However, if I take care of the repeating tasks, I rarely get to the target actions.
By sitting down and looking at my week, I have a better chance of choosing what to do instead of blindly wading through tasks.
Do you plan weekly? What do you include? Share below.
Photo by rexboggs5
Articles In The Series:
- Life Reboot: Where Do You Start?
- Your Ideal Evening
- What Do I Want My Weekends To Look Like?
- What Do I Want More Of In My Life?
- What Do I Want Less Of In My Life?
- Projects, Open Loops and the RAM Dump
- LThinning Projects
- Doing A Time Audit
- Eliminating Time Wasters
- Do You Have Brain Thrash?
- How To Streamline Inputs
- How To Plan A Month
- How To Make A Weekly Plan