O is for... Organised day

I'm generally a pretty organised person, though I joke with friends that since I started working for myself, I've had a terrible boss who never lets me have any time off and always thinks I can get more done in the day.

After I left purgatory work, it took me a while to settle into a productive day or week, but I've got it sorted now! The key to me being organised is my diary. I'm still amazed by people who don't use a diary - whether that's electronic or paper-based. How on earth do they remember what they're doing, never mind manage to plan things??

I would be lost without my diary. My preference is a week to view with vertical, timed columns for the days, and a space for notes. That way I can write out my list of stuff to get done during the week in the notes section and time-box the work into the diary part.

To get the most out of my day, I have a meeting with my boss first thing, where, over a cup of tea, the main priorities for the day are decided. I'm being jokey about having a meeting with my boss as I work for myself, but it is my way of getting into the right frame of mind for the day. If I was working for someone else, what would they expect me to achieve in the day? Would they expect me to be faffing about on Facebook half the morning? Nope. That's not to say I don't faff about on Facebook! But I do sort my day's priorities.

These aren't always work (writing) priorities. It might be that I need to do grocery shopping because there's no food in the house. It might be working out when I can get a run in (the post R is for... Running is coming up soon!). It might be scheduling a 'marketing and publicity hour'. Whatever it is, it gets scheduled that morning. I don't really schedule further ahead than the current day in case new things arise which would throw any plan out.

At the end of the day, I cross off everything that's been achieved from the list in the notes section. Anything new that arrived during the day that I worked on gets added to the week's list and then crossed off. That's partly psychological (I like ticking things off a list!) but also so that when I get to the end of the week, I can see where my time went.

So, that's my secret to an organised day... a cup of tea in the morning over which I make my plan.

What do others do? Let me know in the comments?

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