Organize Your Brain

Part 2 of the Essential Guide to Planning Printables Series

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Divide & Conquer

Organize your ideas by importance, and then start scheduling your projects.

Now that you have written down every single idea in your head, and you have a place for more ideas as you have them, you can can start organizing. Just writing everything down - while a good, necessary, start, it can be overwhelming to look at that list. 

"Where do I start?"

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1. Divide & Conquer
Start by doing a rough divide. Go through your list and mark as Urgent or Anytime.
URGENT = Must be done before another item can be completed.
ANYTIME = Projects that you want to get to, but their incompletion is not hampering your overall progress.

Then transfer your ideas to the Organize your Brain sheet and you have a check list all ready to go, divided by importance.

2. Schedule It
In the same way that writing down your ideas makes them them concrete, scheduling makes your ideas real. Suddenly they aren't just things you should do, or things you need do, but things you will do.  By giving yourself deadlines, it's not only on your radar, it is in your workflow. Deadlines, whether or not you are motivated by stress, create a structure you can work inside, keeping you on track. 

There are probably as many ways to plan your schedule as there are people doing the planning.  Ultimately choose whatever works best for you. Regardless of your planning method, use these tips when scheduling your projects, or even just general goal setting. 

1.) Schedule one project at a time, keeping it specific.  "Create silverware themed rehearsal dinner invitation," rather than "Add more rehearsal dinner invitations to my invitation shop."

2.) Be realistic about your time frame. Figure out how much time it should take to accomplish; consider other ongoing projects, your daily work, and any appointments.  Then add at least 20% to your time estimate.  You don't have to use it, but we usually underestimate how much time we need to do anything, and things come up, so if you add in a pad you'll be sure to finish without feeling rushed or getting discouraged by missing your deadline.

Consider keeping track of your time as you work on it so that you know how close your time estimate was.  Over time, this will help you schedule types of projects with correct time frames.

Now you have your projects organized by importance and scheduled. Just check them off as you complete them.

Don't have the Planning Guide, but feeling inspired? Click here to get it now. 

Part 1 of the Essential Guide to Printable Planning

Part 3 of the Essential Guide to Printable Planning