We want to do it all right? Be the victor. Win the fucking game. Be the best. Conquer the world. Add in every other aspiration here________. For me it can always seem a little overwhelming. And the subject of success usually makes me wonder how I’m going to fit those aspirations into one day. I can’t tell you how many times the subject of organization comes up in my life because of that. It’s constant. I have to really tell myself not to worry about it so much because sometimes it drives me crazy. Running two businesses, traveling, playing music, writing and just life in general can all seem to get a little hectic. So to help me keep things in check, I’ve adopted five things for the day-to-day grind of it all.
Set Aside a Planning & Prep Day: For me, the key to it all actually begins with a planning and preparation day. It may seem like a no brainer, but a lot of people think once Monday rolls around they will just wing it and everything will get done. Unfortunately this just won’t cut it. People with written goals are 50% more likely to achieve than people without goals according to psychologist Cecil Mace, the first to study the empirical data of goal setting. I like to take a few hours on Saturday or Sunday to plan things out and write my goals down for the week. I even try to use some of this time to make sure I’ve got the basics of the week lined up like food, clothes, etc. so I’m not having to spend extra time during the week and I can focus more on the goals and schedule.
Use a digital calendar: I used to be all about the pen and paper. My desk was littered with sticky notes and I always had my trusty notebook to keep track of things. It was a hard transition, at first, but once I took some time to use a digital calendar life became much easier. I use a combination of iCal and Google Cal. My iCal is my primary calendar for both work and personal but I’m also able to use a Google Cal for employee schedules and some other things. Everything syncs to my iPhone and I use iCloud to back up all of my data and appointments. Having a calendar like this will help you keep things organized and you can easily add and delete things on the fly, saving time during the busy week.
Set reminders: I use my iPhone to keep me on-point and accountable throughout the week. A quick buzz in my pocket can help me remember the simplest task or that I need to make sure my notes are ready for the next meeting. Again it seems like a no-brainer, but let’s be honest — our brains can’t remember all of this shit in the first place.
Unplug & Balance: Your devices can be your best sidekicks to get the job done but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t leave them at home and balance things out on the daily. Did you know 43% of adults experienced adverse health effects from stress? And 75-90% of visits to a physician’s office are for stress-related conditions and complaints? Stress is a direct derivative of poor planning and lack of balance. Leave a little time in your day to exercise, read, etc. The time spent away from achieving your goals can be some of the most valuable and rejuvenating.
Have a Recap Session: If you can’t measure what you’ve done at the end, how will you know if you’ve met the goal? A perfect time to measure and assess your planning and goal setting is exactly where you started — the Planning & Prep Day. Use your planning and prep session to first look at what ended up happening and how you can improve upon it during the coming week. Then adjust your planning accordingly and repeat step 1.