Step-by step daily planning (and doing!) for success
July 7, 2021
Do you struggle with planning? Feel like you’re totally winging it? Running around like a headless chook? Below you’ll find my step-by-step guide to planning your week to *actually* get stuff done.
Do you struggle with planning? Feel like you’re totally winging it? Running around like a headless chook? Below you’ll find my step-by-step guide to planning your week to *actually* get stuff done. By building these weekly and daily simple habits, you’ll:
Feel less stressed
Feel more accomplished
Have a clearer mind
Be more productive
Sounds good doesn’t it, who doesn’t want more of all of that!?
Let’s dig in.
Sunday (or early Monday morning)
Step 1: Brain Dump
Write down all the things that are rolling around in your head. Business, personal, a mix of both? Whatever the task is – WRITE. IT. DOWN.
Once everything is out of your head, check your calendar, emails, project management tool, last week’s to-do list, and anything else you use to make sure you don’t miss any other tasks that need to be completed.
With your full list of tasks for the week ahead in front of you, you’re now ready to move onto Step #2.
(Hot tip: With the full list infront of you, now is a great opportunity to really see how you’re spending your time – is it on the stuff you LOVE doing? Is it the stuff that brings in the $$$? Is it the big picture strategic stuff that is going to grow your business, or is it stuff that keeps you in the weeds of ‘doing’? Evaluating how you spend your time on the reg is a great way to know early, and often, if something isn’t working and if adjustments need to be made before you feel overwhelmed, out of control, or worse still miserable in your business.)
Step 2: Prioritise
Go through your brain dump and highlight anything that’s urgent or a ‘must get done’ this week, no questions asked.
Put an arrow → next to anything that can wait until next week.
Use a @ for anything that is waiting on someone else.
Let’s have a look at your list now. Are the tasks listed for this week feeling more achievable?
Step 3: Schedule
Now it’s about working the tasks for this week into your schedule:
Place the important, most urgent, tasks that you’ve highlighted into your schedule for Monday. IMPORTANT: The key here is NOT to overwhelm yourself – so pick the three most urgent tasks to schedule first, knowing that if they’re the only ones you get done on Monday, you’ll already be in front!
Add any appointments, meetings, and deadlines into your calendar for the week that might have missed scheduling (a great time to look at what other meetings you have on and defer, delete, or delegate if you don’t have the time for these, or if it’s just not the week for them).
Add one goal to your list for the week that is going to move the needle closer to your own goals. Something that’s not about your clients or your family. One task that will get you closer to your dreams!
BAM – your week is now planned out and you know what to expect each day. 🙌
Each Weekday Evening
Set yourself up to truly sign off for the day by doing a 360 review:
Didn’t get everything done today? That’s okay! Put it in your schedule for tomorrow. Then, refer back to your brain dump and pick another couple of tasks to add to your schedule for the next day.
Have you worked on your needle moving task yet? If not, schedule in 30 minutes to make a start on it tomorrow. Remember, progress over perfection (as the GigSuper motto says, ‘little by little, a little becomes a lot’ 😉).
Anything else on your mind? Add it to the brain dump list! If something pops up during your day, write it down and go back to the task you’re focusing on! #gamechanger
By brain dumping each evening, once you’re ready to close your laptop, you’ll find you may be able to switch off, recharge and even sleep better at the end of your work day. 😴 Getting all of those thoughts running through your head down onto paper, allows your brain to recognise that it can stop thinking about it because you won’t forget about it!
At the end of the work week (Friday arvo or your equivalent):
Carve some time out for yourself on Friday afternoon to take stock of how the week went. It’s important to celebrate the little wins in business and to acknowledge how far you’ve come and how much you have achieved.
Grab your Friday afternoon beverage of choice and get a notepad and pen ready to answer the following questions ? (Physically writing is a helpful reinforcement behaviour.)
What went well?
What didn’t go well?
What can I do better?
How am I feeling?
How do I want to feel next week?
What am I going to do to make sure I feel that way next week?
If I didn’t work on your needle moving task - why not? How can I ensure it happens next week?
Repeating this process every week will have you not only feeling less stressed, more accomplished, and tackling each day with a clearer mind – you’ll also find you’re making greater progress towards your goals each and every week by staying accountable and properly planning your success.
Leanne Webber is the Founder of The Founders Team, a growth-minded business crew that is there for emerging and established businesses everywhere.