Do you have enough time to get your daily tasks accomplished? At the end of the day, do you feel good about what you’ve done or do you feel you were ineffective, spending time looking for information, forgetting an important meeting or wishing you had a system to keep on track and organized?
Perhaps the following suggestions will help. These are all things I’ve developed and discovered work for me. Your mileage may vary
- Use a Password Management System. For months I’d been thinking of using an on-line password management system. I’d wasted untold hours and experienced extreme frustration with failed login attempts because I couldn’t remember a password. I recommend LastPass as the supreme password keeper out there. It’s easy to use and extremely safe.
- Find a calendaring system that works for you. It may be electronic, it may be paper-based, it may be a combination of both. I have calendars I keep for clients as well as for me. Therefore, I have multiple calendars in my Outlook, but with Outlook’s great calendaring features, they are easy to set up and manage. I use a combination of electronic and paper for my personal items. If it’s after hours or a weekend appointment, I will write it on the family calendar since I know I probably won’t be looking at my computer then. You may work differently. It’s certainly not a one size fits all.
- Develop your own system to not let details you need to handle slip through the cracks and keep up with it. It’s easier to keep up than catch up. Use some kind of list system – don’t try to keep everything in your head – something will slip! I have a small notebook on my desk and it gives me a real feeling of accomplishment to cross things off. I keep similar notebooks for each of my clients and pull it out when I’m working on their projects. There are scads of list keeping systems on-line
- Set short-term goals and use a reward system (or whatever motivates you) to get things accomplished. Do you notice how work expands to fill the day? Do you also notice how much faster you get something done when you have something planned right after? It’s a mind game and doesn’t work for everyone, but try it on yourself and see what happens.
5. Identify and use to your advantage your daily peak time of day. For me, morning is my best time of day and I schedule my most challenging tasks early in the day.
So – you know you need to make a change of habits, but how to get started? First, you have to want to make a change. Then, depending on the status of your office and a frank assessment of where your talents lie, you may want to find a VA (virtual assistant), or gifted associate or friend to get you started on the path of organization and getting things done.