The idea for this post came from the fact that I have been sitting at my desk for the past 15 minutes trying to decide what to write about.
So it’s kind of ironic that I’m going to tell you to start planning ahead and putting more structure in your lives, since I obviously don’t follow my own advice. But I’m going to tell you anyway.
All of us have a certain amount of repetitive things that we have to do each day. It might be making phone calls or answering emails at work, trying to get the house in order, or even making dinner.
If you have certain things that you do on a regular basis, do you have a system for them? Do you plan ahead? Or do you tend to do what you feel like doing when you feel like doing it?
I’ve worked with a lot of ADHD kids over the years and that’s one of their biggest problems/excuses. They don’t do their homework until later in the evening because they haven’t felt like doing it. They finally do, not because they want to, but because they have to.
As adults, we’re guilty of some of that same thinking. Most of us realize, however, that there are lots of things in life we don’t “feel” like doing, but we do them anyway, because we have to.
But what about when you do them, and how?
Do you have set times during the day to check your email and respond to them? Or do you check it randomly throughout the day, responding when you feel like it?
Do you have a set time, say early in the morning, when you make your business calls for the day? Or do you space them here and there throughout the day, calling someone when you think of it or feel like it?
Making dinner is a pretty standard thing. Most of us have an evening meal that requires some effort on our part. But before you start patting yourself on the back for having a regular meal time each night, take a check.
When do you decide what’s for dinner? A few minutes before you make it? When you go grocery shopping? Ideally, you would plan meals and assign them to a day depending on what else might be going on – before you go shopping.
So here’s our new plan, cause we’re planning ahead now.
Figure out the things you do on a regular basis.
Lump them all together – make all of your calls at once, answer all of your emails at once, etc.
Set aside a regular time to do them. Emails – once in the morning and once in the afternoon. Phone calls – first thing in the morning. Dinner – once a week.
None of these things have to be set in stone. This is not meant as a rigid schedule to follow to the letter. What it is instead is an outline for you that can be modified as needed. It’s the easiest, no brainer way to be more productive and make sure everything gets done. I bet you’ll even find you’ve got more time than ever. Cool.