Blog: Can We Have Some Order Here?
Organizing Your Daily Work Schedule
A lot of people see time management as a super-power -- there's surely no way that a mere mortal could fit it all in between 9 and 5! But organizing your schedule at work is simply a matter of having a plan. Just keep these few guiding principles in mind and you'll find it much easier to stay focused on your top priorities as you move through your day.
Think Before You Act
What does the start of your day look like? Do you come to the office, sit down at your desk, and have no idea where to begin? Or perhaps you simply grab the first to-do on the top of the pile, regardless of its urgency or importance? As you might have guessed, neither is a particularly effective way to get the day rolling!
Investing just a few minutes to plan your schedule before you dig in (reviewing your meetings and appointments, figuring out which tasks are your top priorities, and actually plugging them into your calendar so you know the important chores aren't going to fall through the cracks) makes all the difference in how much you accomplish come the close of business.
Let me ask you another question -- does your day begin in low gear or high? Do you systematically start with the hard projects first, or do you "ease" your way into the day with brainless tasks? Many people waste the first hour or two of their morning on "busy work" (checking email, surfing the web, opening mail, etc.) It's easy for these less challenging activities to suck up your time, leaving you feeling as though you've wasted half your day. Pick one big task to tackle as soon as you get to the office -- something that you've been procrastinating on, that has an approaching deadline, or that has simply been hanging over your head. Get it out of the way first thing, before you do anything else -- and even if you don't accomplish anything else, you will still have had a productive day!
Planning Your Day
In today's fast and furious business world, multi-tasking has become the norm -- most folks feel that they aren't being productive unless they're working on 15 different projects at the same time. But you will actually accomplish more if you can devote an uninterrupted chunk of time to a single activity, giving it your full attention and actually finishing it before moving on to the next task. Figure out how much time you realistically need to complete a "to-do," and block it off in your calendar. Then try to schedule any other meetings or activities that might interrupt your work for a different time during the day -- you have an appointment with yourself, and you need to respect that as much as any other commitment in your calendar.
The final issue to consider is how you end your work day. When the whistle blows at 5 PM, it's natural for you to want to jump in your car like Fred Flintstone and tear off for home. But taking just a few minutes to plan your next day the night before can mean the difference between organization and chaos in the morning. Stop work about 15 minutes early, tidy up your desk, and put away any loose items. Review your to-do's and go over your schedule -- deciding which project you plan to tackle first thing and placing the materials for that task on your desk. You will be able to hit the ground running as soon as you arrive, with no time wasted asking yourself, "Now what do I need to get done today?"
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posted on: 1/27/2011 11:30:00 AM by Ramona Creel
category: General Organizing Tips
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Can We Have Some Order Here?
by Ramona Creel
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I have been a Professional Organizer for more than 10 years, I am a NAPO Golden Circle member, and I was the original founder of OnlineOrganizing. I have worked one-on-one with scores of clients and have trained dozens of newbie organizers as they got started in the industry. I provide both hands-on and virtual coaching to help clients improve their organizing skills and simplify their lives. I invite you to visit my website at http://www.RamonaCreel.com, and I challenge you to find one new idea that you can put into practice in your life, to help you become better organized, starting TODAY! I am passionate about coaching folks toward a more balanced, productive, and enjoyable life -- and I firmly believe that if I can do it, so can you!
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