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Monday, 21 November 2011

Get your focus back by taking some time out for a daily and weekly review

Isi Dixon’s second guest post.

Many of us make lists at the beginning of the day or even at the beginning of the week to give us an idea what we would like to accomplish in that time period. That's as far as some people go. Making lists. Some people create lists just to give themselves a bit of a guide as what needs to be done and leave it at that. But how about using these lists not only as a guide of what needs to be done but also what has been done? This can take your productivity to a whole new level.

Taking some time at the end of the day to go through what you have accomplished that day can give you several benefits.

You will get a sense of accomplishment when you see what you have achieved. Looking at how many items you were able to tick off your list, you will feel pretty good about yourself and feeling good is a positive thing, right?

Don't beat yourself up over the tasks you didn't accomplish. There was probably a good reason why you didn't. And if there wasn't, maybe you were procrastinating or doing some serious time wasting. You can make yourself aware of that and take steps not to repeat the same thing tomorrow. If you only ever brush this away and never spend some time to confront your behaviour you will never be able to make a change. So in this case the end of day review can be a tool to improve on bad habits, since you are making yourself more aware of them.

While you're in thinking mode, consider alternatives, how could you do things differently, what would help overcome my procrastination? This way you are planting seeds in your mind that can start to sprout the next day when you find yourself procrastinating on a dreaded task. You already have a solution of what you could do instead.

An end of day review can also be used to plan your activities for the next day. You can sort out what you need for meetings and be better prepared. And with that you can also get your subconscious mind into gear. If you know you have to tackle a particular challenge the next day, your mind will get to work straight away and chances are you will be presented with a suitable solution when you wake up the next morning. Our brains are pretty amazing that way.

A weekly review can provide additional benefits. The weekly review can be held at pretty much any time, as long as you do it regularly at that time. Different people prefer different times. This could be Friday afternoons, Monday mornings or midweek. See what works best for you.

At a weekly review you will take a bit more of an overview of your projects and goals and not just concentrate on your daily tasks. You can see what progress was made on each of your projects and which projects have been neglected. Do these projects still hold value? Or were they neglected because they need to be abandoned altogether.

What progress has been made towards your goals, whether they are long term or short term? Again, do you need to tweak your goals in any way? Goals are not set in stone; they are targets you aim for. But if your life or business situation changes, your goals might need some adjustments, too.

With the help of end of day and end of week reviews you can make sure you stay on track with what you want to achieve and you give yourself some necessary thinking time that we often lack in these stressful times. We rush from one appointment to another, rush home, quite often do some rushing around there and at the weekends we just veg out. Unless you take out some time to think, and it doesn't have to be a lot, your life runs you rather than you run your life. Take about 15 minutes at the end of each day and about 1 hour at the end of the week to get a handle on what it is you want to achieve and to make sure you are achieving the right things. Your productivity will improve and so will your quality of life.

Isi Dixon

Consultant, Motivational Speaker & Author

Well Organised

Professional Organising & Decluttering

Tel: 07732 915456

Author of Get Twice As Much Done In Half The Time – 10 Productivity Strategies for Your Office

Available on  Isis website (with a special bonus edition of Printable Forms, Templates & Worksheets)

Via Smashwords (in the following formats: .mobi, Epub, PDF, LRF – for Sony reader, Palm Doc – PDB – for Palm reader)

1 comment :

Anonymous said...

Some useful advice here and its not difficult to put these ideas to the test.

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