Ebook Sample Content Preview:
While time tracking software can help you monitor the time that you spend completing certain tasks, tools such as Day Timers and calendars can help you plan that time in advance. These tools are necessary when using the schedule that we talked about and devised in chapter 6.
The key is to get that same schedule organized in three distinct ways- with a Day Timer, a calendar, and a "to do" list. Since the Day Timer and calendar are similar, we will explore those first. In the next section we will tackle the in and outs of "to do" lists.
Although it may seem repetitive at first glance, any successful time management plan really needs to utilize both a Day Timer and a calendar. The calendar will soon become your master planner, and your Day Timer will become your daily planner and the container for your "to do” list.
Let's start out discussion with calendars. It doesn't really matter which type of calendar you choose, however, you should pick one that contains large enough spaces in each square to
hold multiple entries and notes. To use your calendar efficiently start by importing the tasks from the schedule that you completed earlier.
Since your Day Timer will contain all of the detailed information from your schedule, you do not need to make entries on your calendar like sort incoming mail at 2 p.m. You do, however, need to enter all meetings, appointments, time sensitive report running, and major deadlines.
For example, your meeting with a client at 9 a.m. on Monday, your 10 a.m. Tuesday appointment with the web designer, and your 5 p.m. deadline on Friday for advertising bids should all be included on your calendar.
Your calendar is also the place to add entries regarding entire days that need to be devoted to conferences, large computer projects, and personal events such as family dinners and birthday parties.
Since you will be recording both personal and professional entries on the same calendar, it can help if you start color-coding these entries. For example, you can record all professional entries in red or black ink Red ink can be used to denote outside engagements, and black ink can be reserved for engagements that will take place at your office or home.
Then, blue ink can be used to denote all personal entries. By using this color-coding system you can more readily grasp the extent and nature of your commitments with a single glance.
Once you have entered every appropriate schedule entry onto your calendar, it is time to break out your Day Timer.
When scheduling with your Day Timer your objective is more complex. Your calendar entries were made in order to guide your general schedule for the month and provide you with a master plan. Your Day Timer entries, however, will be used to guide your efforts on a weekly and daily schedule.
Using the same type of color-coding that you used with your calendar, begin entering your tasks into your Day Timer. However, this time you not only want to include more detail, but also specific time allotments that you have determined are necessary for the completion of each task.