It’s January 1, 2018 and that means resolution time, right? I am here to tell you that your planner won’t make you productive. It’s a harsh truth. I speak from experience. I am embarrassed to tell you — to tell anyone — how much money I spent on planners over the years. I would lust after each new one and was convinced that specific planner would be THE one — my perfect and ideal love match. With the “right” planner I would be more productive, happier, healthier, taller, thinner… you see where I am going with this, right?
The harsh truth is, your planner won’t make you productive. It doesn’t matter if it’s a paper planner or an electronic planner (like Trello, for example). It is you. It is what is within you that will make a planner work for you. It’s not the planner, it’s what you put in it, what you track, how you measure “productive” and what you want to accomplish.
Your Planner Won’t Make You Productive
Recently, I have become enamored of the minimalist bullet journal. I originally fell in love with bullet journaling, but was scared off because I am not “creative enough” to have one of those beautifully decorated bullet journals that I had seen that truly are works of art. My stick people are even embarrassed about how poorly I draw them; it’s the truth.
A middle of the night ephiphany made me realize, “Hey, I don’t have to be that fancy!” I can bullet journal and make it my own — that, my friend, is the beauty of the bullet journal — you make it truly your own. The reason I struggled with whatever my latest planner purchase was that it met some of my needs, but not all of my needs.
A bullet journal — my bullet journal — so far is meeting my needs. The reason for that is I have watched a ton of videos and have gleaned info from each of them that will help make my bullet journal work for me. I realized last year when I started the bullet journal process that I liked the idea of being able to change the layouts when I found one that worked better for me. I like that my bullet journal is a place where I can keep my client notes. My journal is a place for me to keep track of items for which I am grateful and thankful. A place to track what books I want to read and television shows I want to watch. I track my habits there; it is more useful for me to see whether I have walked at least 5,000 steps a day on paper than scrolling back through my Fitbit.
What will make you productive or as I like to say, “effective and efficient”?
- Know what you want to accomplish
- Set S.M.A.R.T. goals
- Track what is important
- Know why you’re setting a specific goal. Know your “why”
- Break bigger goals into bite sized chunks. Want to write a book? Great! Break that into smaller, more doable tasks
What method do you use to track your goals and accomplishments? What stops you from being effective and efficient?
Email me at Robbi AT AllWordsMatter DOT com — I’m giving away an Effectiveness & Efficiency Session to the first five people who email! It’s my 2018 gift to you to help you start the year on the right foot and to conquer the overwhelm!