Using a Planner Productively by Meggin McIntosh, PhD

In General
Nov 3rd, 2013

Personal plannerWe all need to have some sort of planner if we have any hope, whatsoever, of being productive.  It is fascinating how in this day and age, with all the digital versions, there are still brand new paper planners being created – and there are people moving away from digital back to paper.  It really doesn’t matter what you use as long as you use your planner mindfully.  Here are some thoughts related to this notion:

  1. Get used to the idea that any professional needs to have–and know how to use–a planner (either paper or electronic).
  2. Buy a planner that you love (the size, the shape, the paper, the format) so that you take pleasure each time you use it.
  3. Put everything into your planner (names, dates, notes, appointments). Consider it “information central.”
  4. Take your planner with you everywhere. Have a place for your open planner in your workspace.
  5. Maintain one–and only one–planner.
  6. Recite this mantra: ‘What gets scheduled gets done.’
  7. In your planner, keep a schedule of appointments, including appointments with yourself to get your work done.
  8. Designate one area of your planner for your master task list, i.e., items that don’t have a specific due date, but that you don’t want to forget about.
  9. Create a “task list” for each day. Rethink your list based on your other commitments.
  10. Consider the month-at-a-glance portion of your planner to be the “storyboard” of your month. You’ll get the “big picture” this way.

If you don’t currently have a planner, then get out there and get one. If you already have a planner, go ahead and put at least one of these ideas that you aren’t currently using into practice this week. Don’t delay. No excuses.

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