Become the best version of myself, structure my life and implement daily routines. These are my goals for the new year.
For years I have been talking about exercising more regularly and eating a good diet. I tell myself that I’ll get up earlier, go for a run, stay hydrated, make a flea market to sell clothes and the list goes on. But most of it never happens and this makes me feel like I’m not on top of my game. But how to avoid the following scenario?
Let’s assume it’s 09:30 AM. I am writing a blog post – ‚PING‘ just received a text: ‚Time for coffee today?‘ – ‚DING‘ an urgent email arrived – answering the email – need a picture from my phone to attach to email – looking for the picture on my phone – (getting distracted) surfing on Instagram and answering DMs of my followers…
Pheeew this is exhausting. And the blog post won’t write itself. Sometimes I feel so overwhelmed with my workload that I just want to nap. But is it actually that much? Or am I just not focused enough? And if the missing focus is the reason, how do I structure my life?
If you have the same questions then this right here is for you.
You will find a FREE Structure Plan template at the bottom of this post. Just keep on reading.
Organize my Time – Structure my Life – Implement daily routines
As a blogger, I am like every self-employed, my own boss and have to take care of my time management. So by the beginning of 2018, I read a bunch of ‚How to organize yourself‘ & ‚How to be more productive’ guides. They all agree on one essential thing: create a schedule. Hmmmpf. My first reaction. I always wanted to live spontaneously. I wanted to be my own person and do my own thing. Besides, keeping a routine is hard work. But know what? If smart scheduling helps me to structure my life I will give it a try.
“Either you run the day or the day runs you.” - Jim Rohn
Ok. Time to get practical. Here I am blocking time for breakfast, lunch and schedule meetings with my friends.
My friends? Well, yeah. Welcome to adulthood. So I created this excel calendar sheet and started scheduling my life in January. I mean, I worked with calendars before but not as detailed as this one. I never thought I would plan every 30min of my life, but when I was done my head felt 5kg lighter. The awesome thing about this calendar is, it covers all of the things I want to accomplish not just work related stuff, but also private and official things.
This is how the calendar works:
1. MONTHLY GOALS:
First of all, go into brainstorm mode and make a list of your monthly goals. Yes, ALL of them. Just write down every little thing that you want to accomplish, long-term and short-term. Then structure these goals into sections. My sections are:
a) Julia Dalia
b) Paper Work
Then assign a color to every section.
2. TASK & TIME LIST:
Break the goals into specific tasks and assign the time needed. E.g: Let’s say your monthly goal is „Sell Clothes on United Wardrobe App“ then one task is „Take pictures of clothes to sell on United Wardrobe“ which will take „2hrs“. This list will give you an overview of how much time you actually spent on certain things. Also, schedule to schedule: at the end of each week take some time to plan the following week. And take your time to create a new schedule for the next month.
Put tasks as time blocks into your calendar. Plan honestly, you know yourself. For example, I am not a morning person. That’s why my schedule starts at 08:30 and I grant myself a generous amount of time in the morning. The start of the day is essential: don’t check your social media accounts right after waking up, but implement a healthy routine that will help you stay focused and grateful throughout the day. Even on the tough ones. I dedicate the morning to reading the Bible, some quiet time and then I hit my knees and say a prayer.
Also very important: eat the frog. It means tackling the most difficult tasks at first. It provides a much better workflow. If you don’t know how many tasks will fit into one day, just estimate. And if you don’t achieve everything don’t worry, just reschedule at the end of the day. Slowly but surely you’ll get a feeling. Also, consider the best times for certain tasks. For example, I love to write in the evening or on the plane. So I bear that in mind when I create my calendar. Also, keep your daily to-do list manageable and not overwhelming. When you’re done give yourself a pat on the back and call it a day. Scheduling should make you feel good.
For people who already schedule on a regular basis, it might not be as liberating as it was for me. But to see all of my goals, the exact tasks and the amount of time was eye-opening for me. To be honest I am also sharing this with you to stay motivated. I live on the calendar for 2 weeks now and it increased my productivity and I get more stuff done each week. To structure my life also limits my procrastination problem, I know exactly what I want to get done and when – which makes it more likely that I’ll do it. Establishing a positive daily routine is a self-investment. NOW I know I got a lot to do but I also know I can be on top of my game.
Need structure too? I created an exemplary template for you. If you’d like to become more structured than you already are and increase your productivity you can download it here: Try out ‚Structure My Life‘ template.
I hope this helps to structure your life too. If you like this post feel free to leave a comment! 🙂
Photos by Julian Sell