Did you start this year full of good intentions about better organised diary management only to find you’re still rushing from one task to the next with seemingly little time for the people or activities that are most important to you?
Busyness can be contagious but has the potential to leave you overbooked, overtired and overwhelmed. For simplifying your schedule and giving you some headspace, a review of diary commitments can be a very worthwhile exercise.
The key to a Better Organised diary is to balance structure with flexibility. Here’s a step-by-step guide to editing your calendar so that you can approach your days with a calm, positive and purposeful approach.
1. Review your diary/calendar to determine what your main priorities and genuine commitments are. Determining which activities are truly non-negotiable is a great starting point. By securing these in your schedule, you can identify how much time you have available for other entries.
2. Take the opportunity to consider whether your current obligations are still necessary and meaningful or simply habit? Being part of a committee or community group can be worthwhile, but if it has started to feel like a chore perhaps it’s time to take a step down and use the time for business growth, professional development or simply a bit of me time!
3. Are there any commitments or invitations that you can say no to? Or that can be delegated, shared or outsourced? Spring clean your schedule so that you have time to focus more on the things that you really want or need to be doing, and then strategically block out realistic and appropriate chunks of time for those priorities.
4. Things that get scheduled generally get done! Consider ditching the to-do list and slotting tasks into your diary instead. By attaching tasks to specific days or times, you can get a bird’s eye view of all your activities and plans in one place.
5. Schedule a timeslot for a weekly review of your diary. This can help sharpen your focus and lets you gather your thoughts in advance of meetings or events. By reminding yourself of upcoming appointments you also have the opportunity to plan any actions that need to be done in advance.
6. Reviewing your diary first thing in the morning and last thing at night is a great way to stay tuned in to your priorities. By regularly circling back to your planned activities you’ll have clarity about your objectives and be more likely to filter out requests or distractions that don’t align with these.
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