Organized Living: Weekly Planner

In the New Year effort to get organized I decided to reinstate the planning printables that I created. I previously posted about the Weekly Dumplist and have given it an update. Now called the Weekly Planner, I think it's better suited for its real use. The Weekly Planner is an itemized to-do list that helps you see all the tasks for the week and organize them per day. It's a great tool for a designer like me or anyone else that just has a lot of things to do!

Click here to download the printable PDF to-do list.

In the top right you can write down your project and the date followed by a brief overview for the week. Take a minute and write down any appointments or other items that are already scheduled. There's a box for each day giving you plenty of room to make notes. This is a great place to add doctor visits, birthdays, or even family dinner here in this section.

On the left is the big list. Start at the top line and add a task, then another one. Get all of the things you need to do out of your brain and on to this piece of paper. As you start writing you'll start to remember more things that you need to do so keep writing. Write EVERYTHING you need to do on this list. It might not all get done this week but by writing everything down you won't forget something.

Now you can break up the week into days. Read down your list. Are any of the items urgent? If they are then put an X on the corresponding line in the Urgent column. Read through your list again and think about which items need to be done first and which can be accomplished later in the week. Assign a day to them in the Date Assigned column, I use M, T, W, Th, F as my shorthand. Take into consideration how long a task will take you to complete and maybe put one longer project on each day. Also be sure to space out your tasks throughout the week, not everything needs to be done on Monday.

The next step is to get to work! After you've completed each task on the list then put an X in the Complete box. I scratch out the whole line, too! By Friday you should have everything done!

Click here to download the printable PDF to-do list.

I've also included it in the righthand column of the blog if you need to come back and grab some fresh prints! -->

New day, new year, new thoughts

I'm happy to welcome a new year. 2012 was hard and it will be good to have a new start. I'm not into resolutions but there are some things I'd like to change so today is a good day to make personal goals.

I perpetually struggle with organization and knowing myself I am not going to resolve to be more organized because I won't. I will set myself some achievable, specific goals that could turn into long-term habits. For example, about halfway through 2012 I decided to knit daily. It took a little time for me to ramp up to that but now I am more productive than ever. I even managed to knit a couple of Christmas gifts (and mail them!) by Christmas along with knitting new samples for my Ewe Ewe and Heather Ink pattern lines. Knitting daily has become a good part of my routine rather than a stressful, rushed burden. I'm taking this goal-turned-productive-habit as inspiration for this new set of goals. Here are my ideas for three simple goals:

1. Make something every week. I am always up to something. There's always a new project, recipe or tutorial that I've got my hands in and I think it would be a good idea to keep track of them. I love to cook, knit and design and making new things usually involves learning something new. I want to remember, share and reference those somethings. I'll try to post a project each week!

2. Take time to plan. The day, the week, the month. At work I can easily get caught up in the "putting out fires" methodology. That doesn't serve anyone well. I hate being rushed and why should I be, I work for myself! Taking the time to plan the day, planning out the course of a new project, and maybe putting deadlines on a monthly calendar could really improve my workflow and in turn positively affect my creativity. I also don't want to get thrown off course if my plan doesn't work out for a day or two. I need to just realign and get back on track. I have some good tools for this and I will write more blog posts about time management and project planning. If you have any good ideas please share them! I love to learn how other people work and organize.

3. Keep the common area clean. My husband and I both work from home and we do a good job of working during work hours and stopping work as if we were at an office. We have seperate offices that are set up with the tools we use to work. Neither of us are good at keeping these areas tidy. We work in a flurry, we always have and we always will. But when we leave work I want the flurry to stop. I want to keep the living room, kitchen island and dining room table free of chaos. I'm not sure how to manage this other than to start today with my already tidied home. This is the hardest and most daunting goal for me. One day at a time says Fly Lady: I am not behind! I will not try to catch up; I will jump in today.

What are your goals? Is today the day you're going to start one? It's ok if it isn't, just think about it until you feel inspired to make a change because then the change will last.