Planning’s traps

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about quite important thing to me. As you might have realised already, I plan my year, month, week and each day. I keep my bullet journal for that purpose. And although I admire my system, I can see some potential traps connected to it too. I have fallen into most of them myself, some stopped me from getting my things done at all for a while. So I’ve decided to share all of them with you in this post.

Just before I’ll start, I would like to note that all this isn’t to scare you, but to make you aware, so if you’ll become a victim of any of them, hopefully you’ll take an action as soon as possible.

Let’s move into the traps:

Overloading your TO DO lists

This is quite common. You’ve probably heard about it millions times already. But this is a big one. We tend to overestimate how long each task is going to take us. This is going to happen quite often, especially when you are just starting your adventure with planning and scheduling. However, even if you are a pro, master of planning and creating your schedules, there might be a time, when something out of your control will cross your plan. Let’s say you need an internet connection to complete most of your tasks and during the most busy day, you won’t be able to connect. Or there will be some other emergency, like broken pipe or anything else. You might find yourself in the situation, when at the end of the day you look at your TO DO list and there is nothing to be ticked.

I am usually very disappointed and unmotivated. I completely lose any will to carry on for a couple of days. Especially, if tasks from the previous days have to be done any way and adding them to the next day, where everything seems to be packed up and ends up carried on to the next day, where there are again tons of things to do… I think you get the point. It might get you on the loop, where each iteration leaves you with more and more to do every next day.

If you want to avoid it, you can do one of the two things. First is to simply plan as much, as you can handle each day, with leaving some time for emergencies. But if it is not possible for some reason, you might try to assign one day a week (or month), when you are not planning anything. Just keep getting any pending tasks, to clear your TO DO list before the next planning session. This way you’ll create an escape from loop mentioned before.

Forgetting to update your plan

If you are anything like me, you might find yourself in the situation, when new things keep coming up at any time of the day. I tend to forget to put it into my schedule and… simply forget about it after less than 10 minutes. Although, it doesn’t sound like very serious thing, you might realise that you work very hard, but there are a lot of things just dropping out of your hands.

Solution to that is very simple and a hard at the same time. You just have to make an habit of adding all this incoming tasks into your plan right away. It is so easy, but everyone who tried to make a new habit will tell you, how hard job it is.

Not achieving your goals

All plans should lead to some bigger goal. However, sometimes you might work a lot on something and not be able to see any results. This might leave you very disappointed. Seeing all the time you’ve spend, might make you think that there is no point. Only thing you need to remember is that some stuff are just taking more time than the other. But if you’ll still think that you’ve just wasted your time, it might be a sign that either the way you’re working is wrong, or the entire goal is just not for you. This might be analysed and you should be given an answer.

These are all traps I wanted to share with you today. I hope they were helpful. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

How to win with mistakes?

Hi guys,

Today, I would like to talk about failures in planning. Especially, when you don’t have an experience, you might under-estimate the time, you need to complete particular task. It happened to me last week. I said, that first of my episodes on YouTube is going to be uploaded on last Wednesday or Thursday. However, it had happen, that there was much more work needed to make it presentable, than I thought at the beginning. I haven’t realised, that to meet this deadline I need some more software to proccess my video, after I need to learn (at least on basic level) how to use it, and so on. I also wasn’t aware, that using a completely new kind of program will be so difficult and time-consuming. At least for me (well, actualy I knew, but haven’t thought about it while planning).

So what with my plan? As you can guess, my plan went completely wrong. Everything collapsed just because of one task. And I won’t lie: at the beginning I was about to give up. Just leave all this planning think and try to work like before – without any plan. You know this feeling, when you really want to do something right, but it turns out like always? But fortunately, I have realised, that this is all about. As planning is like riding a bike. Before you’ll become a pro, you need to fall down many times. But if you will give up, you will not even get the idea, how to keep your balance. Same with planning. How you can know, how long particular task is going to take, if you have never tried to plan similar one before?

So when assigning time to tasks you might make a lot of mistakes on the beginning of your planning journey. Maybe just like me, you might not be aware, how particular activity has to be done; or it can simply take longer than you thought it will. But there is no reason to give up on whole plan.

I will share with you some tips on how to actualy minimise consequences of being late because of failing to accomplish one task on time.

Check, if you can reschedule it without major consequences

This is something I failed to do. But before I’ll tell you about it, let me shortly explain, how my planning proccess looks like. Basically, I create huge to-do list filled with task for one week. They are sorted by deadlines and importance. What is kind of important, these task are quite general. Just end product and in reality it contains smaller tasks, which are being assigned to particular day in a week. I don’t plan, what time I am going to do what, as my life style needs a lot of improvements to be called regular. So generally, rescheduling is something new in my planning, which I found out too late. I have spent a lot of time trying to solve one task, which I could easily leave and move deadline (my channel doesn’t have any content yet, so it wouldn’t let anyone down – except me). Instead, I have focused on it ignoring other tasks, so they became late (like my last post being uploaded one day later and today’s three hours later). But this is something I am going to try next time, hopefully 😉

Analyse your mistakes and learn from them

This rule actually applies not only to planning, but to every aspect of our lifes. It is important to, whenever you make mistake, try and find the reason causing it. Maybe you were too tired, or you have underestimated time needed for your task. Maybe you have just scheduled too much and you had no chance to cope with it (it still happens to me, sometimes). There might be a lot of reasons and it is crucial to find them and try to avoid them in the future.

Don’t think about past mistakes

You know, past is past. You can’t change it. Just learn your lesson (after analysing it) and don’t think about it any more. It will not help you at all. It happened already. Going over it again and again might make you fail with next tasks. So don’t bother any more. And start this next task you have planned. It will have much better consequences than crying about the thing, that can’t be changed.

Don’t be afraid to change the way you plan

I know, this is very painfull, when you invented perfect way to plan. But hey! It doesn’t work! You don’t need to change whole system. Just try to incorporate small changes at the time, so you can find something what works better for you. And keep in your mind possibility of mistakes (propably it will take some time till you will stop doing them). So next time you will be prepared and you’ll be able to nail it, even with this small failure in the background.

Don’t give up

This is actualy the worst thing you can do (and I almost did it). As long as you keep going, you still have chance to get everything done (even if it will be slightly later than you wanted, it is still better than if you wouldn’t done it at all).

And this is all for today’s post. I hope it is helpfull for you. As always, I wish you very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria