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Blog: Be Organized, Live Better
Organizing Challenge - Choosing the Right Planner

A planner can make or break you. My clients frequently complain that they just can't seem to keep track of appointments, often missing things outright. That can be more than a little frustrating. Here are some tips and tricks to help.
  • Choose a calendar that works with you, not against you. There are lots of choices, so choose with your particular needs in mind. Here are somethings to consider:
  • Is portability important? Will you be going from meeting to meeting or traveling between clients? If so, you will need something that will move easily with you . Conversely, if you stay in one play for the majority of the time the size of the calendar may not be so critical.
  • Is there plenty of room to enter all the information you need? You don't want to be trying to figure out what your abbreviations mean each time you are about to leave for an appointment. With that said, if you choose to use abbreviations, be consistent, choose one version and stick with it.
  • What layout will best meet your needs? Do you need to see only a day at time, or do you want to be able to scan a week or a month in one glance? Make sure the format you choose allows for a variety of views so you aren't left frustrated.
  • Keep your calendar near by at all times. If it is out of reach you risk double booking yourself because you can't easily check for conflicts. You will be less likely to enter new information if it's not easily accessible.
  • Write down or enter ALL appointments or tasks as soon as you learn of them. That means immediately, don't risk waiting. Be sure to enter all recurring commitments as well. You may think you will remember to do something regularly, but why leave anything to chance when you have a system that will do the remembering for you.
  • Work your calendar for all it is worth. Use it jog your memory and help you prepare ahead of time for appointments. For instance, if you have a presentation to give in June, schedule prep time into the weeks leading up to the delivery date. If you have to travel to a conference in September that requires a plane ticket, make a note to purchase that ticket during July. Anything you have to do should be scheduled if you want to guarantee it will get done.
  • Write with pencil or erasable ink if you are using a paper planner. Cross outs and rewrites are difficult to read, and can be very confusing.
  • If you use an electronic planner learn how to use the functions . A particularly useful one is the reminder alert. Setting an alert allows you to fully engage in a project without having to keep an eye on the clock. The alert can be set to sound a certain number of minutes ahead of your next scheduled appointment, giving you time to wrap up and get there on time.
If you follow these simple tips you should radically reduce the number of missed appointments, if not eliminate them altogether. you experience. Keep in mind consistency is the key. A system is only as good the person using it. Remember that it will take some practice to get in the habit of writing or entering every appointment, but the benefit will absolutely be worth it. The biggest benefit is being the freedom to focus on the moment at hand, without the distraction of worrying about a forgotten appointment.

posted on: 9/11/2011 1:46:28 PM by Kelly Jayne McCann
category: General Organizing Tips

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Be Organized, Live Better

by Kelly Jayne McCann

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About Kelly Jayne:

Kelly Jayne McCann, professional organizer, clutter coach & productivity expert, helps overwhelmed women get organized, clear clutter, manage time and find balance. Kelly Jayne pulls no punches - she believes too many women buy into societal expectations. If your to-do list has gotten out of control, if you can't remember the last time you said no to someone else so you could say yes to you, if you feel resentful of always doing what you 'should' instead of what you want, Kelly Jayne can help you. When you are ready to take control and create change she is your go-to resource. Whether you need a daily dose of inspiration, an occasional 'put on your big girl panties' wake up call, or a life overhaul, Kelly Jayne will help you reach your goals. She has helped hundreds of women create lives they truly love! She can help you too!

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