Definition of Organizing: Arrange into a structured whole/order. Synonyms are: put into order, arrange, sort or categorize.
Definition of Productivity: The measure of the efficiency of a person, machine or system in connecting inputs into useful outputs. Synonyms are: efficiency, production, output.
Definition of Time Management: The ability to use one’s time effectively or productively. Synonyms are: Orderliness, efficiency, scheduling and productivity.
Notice anything similar among them? They’re all related to each other. You have to be organized to be productive and to be organized and productive you need to have good time management skills. Let’s break this down a little……
So, when you want to have a really productive day while at home or at work, how do you start out? Well, I actually start out the night before. Each night before I go to bed I get out my planner and plan put my next day. The first thing that I try to do is list any appointments that I have to keep and their times. Then I do a complete brain dump on Sundays but more on that process in another post.
Next, I open my Google Calendar but you can use a physical planner if that works better for you. I look at the chunks of time I have left after all of my appointments – adding in drive time – and see what of these tasks on my nightly brain dumps I can fit in where, taking into account how long each task each would take to do. Since my workouts are non-negotiable, they go on the calendar too.
I try to be realistic and leave some extra time for those things that may take longer than I planned once I get started or for any surprises that might interrupt my day.
When I get up the next day, I look over my calendar. Now I’m ready to start my day – after my workout and shower. I grab a big glass of water and I make sure I have everything I need to accomplish all that I want to readily at my fingertips. This is pretty easy since I have my office organized. I have my laptop, files – all arranged alphabetically and everything else I might need arranged at my desk along with my printer. I try to follow the Pomodoro Method of 45 minutes of straight work and then a 15 minute break where I get up and move some. I’ve found this also keeps me much more focused and productive.
At the end of my day, I look back at my calendar and check off everything that I completed and move any unfinished items or things that need more research to the next day. I’m one of those nerds that really feels a sense of accomplishment when I check off those boxes for completed items. Then I start the process all over again.
So, that’s the way I am the most productive. I use time management and an organized environment to be my most productive. Do you see now that you need both time management and organizing to be your most productive? See how they are all related? If you have other methods that work for you I’d love to hear about them in the comments below.
By the way, I’m working on creating a couple of “emergency notebooks” to record and keep all your important and vital papers in the case of an emergency. What do you think? Do you have any interest or think anyone else might? Any ideas of things you’d like to see in them? I really want to create them to be just what you’d need in an emergency!