To make the most of this tool, use these tips and troubleshooting techniques:
- Prioritize Tasks
When itemizing your tasks, highlight or star those tasks that are important to get done today. Then schedule these into your most productive time slot (the earlier the better to ensure disruptions don’t derail you).
- Align With Your Energy
Schedule your tasks based on your focus and energy throughout the day. If you happen to be most productive and focused in the afternoon, schedule your critical tasks then.
- Schedule Buffers
Schedule buffer times throughout your day, so if you are running behind, you don’t get off schedule. If you are on schedule, use these times to get ahead of schedule or to take a break.
- Schedule Breaks
Plan to take breaks throughout your day to reset your energy and do a quick check-in on your progress. These can be as quick as a two minute stretch in between each task.
- Reschedule When Needed
If you get way behind schedule: stop, take a breath and re-schedule your day. Don’t attempt to hold to the schedule you created in the morning if you’re an hour or more behind after lunch. Unless you grossly overestimated tasks (which is unlikely), you won’t catch up. Go back and eliminate those things that can be deferred until tomorrow, so you can focus on what’s most important today.
Next you’ll learn how you can create a scheduled to do list using either paper or the downloadable spreadsheet.