Weekly ScheduleTuesday, May 16, 2006
You may or may not remember this productivity tool I’ve created. It’s simple, really. When I [originally posted] about it I wasn’t sure how I’d even use it and what the best methods would be. Now I can confidently share my Weekly Schedule tactics with you.
I’ve done some measuring and discovered the amount of time I waste sitting around or reading the news or doing some other un-productive tasks. Sometimes I lack motivation, other times I lack direction. This was an attempt to force myself to get as much done as possible each and every day.
The point of organization is not to simply organize, but to spend a little bit of time now in order to save a lot of time (or frustration, or energy, or whatever) later. In other words, there has to be some sort of benefit to your organization. For me, I was going to spend maybe 30 minutes on a Saturday or Sunday to sit down, look at what I have scheduled for the week and then fill in the gaps. This is how I planned to get more reading done, work out regularly, etc. By filling in the gaps I should always have something productive in front of me. Keep in mind I didn’t want to turn myself into a woaholic, I scheduled my “fun activities” like TV, blogging, playing Zelda 64 and checking email.
Anyway, let’s talk about the tool itself. It’s, as I mentioned, a simple full-page paper of the entire week split into 30 minute segments. Each row is 6 hours, 4 rows per day. My goal was to make sure each box was filled. These boxes only take up the left half of the page though. The right is dedicated to notes and any extra detail necessary. See below:
As you can see the tool is flexible for your needs. For some, a simple at-a-glance reminder is sufficient. For others, like myself, I’d like to plan out my entire week. Thus, I used some light colors and filled in the cells. Gray is sleep time, yellow is for meals, etc.
It’s Friday at noon, I know to look at the third line because half the day (two lines) has already passed. I should have lunch and then spend no more than an hour on email and blogs. After that I can tell I’m planning on reading and then heading to the gym. Easy as that. A few colors and some time spent planning means I don’t sit there and wonder ‘Hmm, should I go work out now? Well, I just ate, maybe later? Hmm, I haven’t played Nintendo in a while. Eh, but I should read I guess. Ah heck, I’ll just go take a nap.’
Instead of debating with my present self I can delegate the task of deciding to my past self. I’m a pretty diciplined guy but I know that when faced with a situation, like many humans, we’ll take the easy route. Thats why diciplined-Saturday-morning-scheduling-Devin made this schedule, he knew what was best for me.
It may not be for everyone but I like it because it’s pretty flexible. Some people prefer paper/pencil, others like technology. Either way I hope this can help someone else be more productive! As always, I appreciate comments, questions and suggestions.
Click here to download WeeklySchedule.xls