Managing Daily Work

Tired of hearing that OneNote and Outlook are the only two tools needed to be organized? You’ve tried going digital and it just isn’t for you? I’m with you. I am not one of those people. For as long as I can remember, I have always written notes. I keep handwritten notes for to-do’s, grocery lists, meeting minutes, you name it. This is why keeping a notebook works so well for me.

For my tasks, I follow “true” Bullet Journal methodology. This system, invented by Ryder Carroll, focuses on having a new task list for each day. You can read more about the Bullet Journal on Ryder’s website. I highly recommend watching the video. As you accomplish tasks, you cross them off. If you are unable to complete a task, you must migrate it to the next day. (I have seen variations of this system that involve one running list for a whole week. This weekly method is what I follow for my personal organization system, since my tasks are less time-sensitive.) For work, I create a new list each day. When a task comes up, I add it to the list. By keeping one daily list, it reminds me to do things as soon as possible. This greatly helps reduce procrastination since I am constantly focused on completing the tasks on the list. As soon as I finish a task, I go to mark it off and see what’s next.

At the end of the day or beginning of the following day, I take all remaining, uncompleted tasks, and add them to a new list for the day ahead.  When my task list looks overwhelming and someone stops by and ultimately produces another action item, I am able to see realistically when I can get to their request. In a later post, I will write about how I handle deadlines and forward planning.  Does following this method work for you? Each person is different. If this system doesn’t work for you, why not? What do you think you are missing?

2 Replies to “Managing Daily Work”

  1. First comment! Congrats on starting the blog.
    I tend to opt for a much less structured version of the bullet journal — I was too neurotic about having a structured format and anticipating whether that format would accommodate all of the changes I might see day to day. Am I wasting paper if I don’t have much to write on a given day? Am I not leaving enough space for the busy days? Am I going to end up scribbling everything out and starting over?

    What are your tips for getting past that anxiety?

    Solution for me was to not gather my tasks in to one place, odd as that is. Bullet for notes I take; squares or circles (depending on who owns the task) for tasks. Check them off as they’re completed or mark them with an arrow to defer them to the next day. It got me through a staggeringly chaotic summer and I love it.

    Keep up the good work!

    1. Dan,

      Thanks so much for your comment. I am glad you are enjoying the content!
      My best tip for getting past the anxiety of getting started is just to try. You will figure out what your exact needs are and can modify your journal accordingly. This is one of the best things about the Bullet Journal system. It’s okay if you end up scribbling everything out. Don’t worry too much about what it looks like. You’re trying to find an organization system that works for you. Who cares if its pretty? It sounds like you have done a great job working through your anxiety. I wrote a follow-up post to your comment, hoping to help others with the same concerns as you. Hopefully this helps and gives you some new ideas too.

      Thanks again for your feedback!

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