How to handle to-do list with multiple overdue tasks?

Hi guys,

Today I would like to tell you about getting behind. As bad and scary it sounds, unfortunately it is a reality for many of us (if not all of us). Lately, I had fallen behind as well and when I thought I’ve started getting out on straight path with my work, there were so many new tasks coming (what might be a disadvantage of planning ahead), that it was again getting out of my hands. You could also realise that, because since last two weeks one post each week was missing. I was even considering shifting for two posts a week, instead of three, but I have decided that this is not the best solution. Running away from the problem will not really solve it. So even if I had to miss two or three posts, I am back on track (at least I hope so 😉 ).

However, more regular posting doesn’t mean that I made up my other tasks. They are still hanging over my head and waiting to be done. I wanted to show you my planning process in details. I’ve mentioned that I am using Nozbe and a bullet journal, but I have never explained how they are co-working in my case. And this post will appear as soon as I will manage to bring my tasks up to date (especially university-related, as my coming due date will not allow me to attend second dates of assignments and exam). All because I know that explaining this process will take a bit more time.

But coming back to today’s topic, I believe that most of us (if not all) at least once in their life came across the situation, when to-do list seemed not end and looking for a solution for that (which by the way, makes our tasks being left behind for a little more) became some kind of obsession. And guess what? There are tons of advises for people like we are out there! Unfortunately, to read about them is taking unbelievable amount of time (which actually used for working on our tasks would bring us a bit closer to handling this huge list) and not all of these advises are worth it to be read. There are many of them repeating, but being named differently.

So going through these advises and pretty much wasting my time, I came across the only one, which seem really work. And it does require from you just one thing: keep getting your tasks done! There is no magic method to get everything done within one day (especially if you really got behind a lot), but everyday work, where you are getting as much done as you can will make you handle your to-do list (even if it will happen after week or two).

When I have started working this way, I had to carry on around 15 tasks for next day (yes, I got so badly behind) and at the moment I got to the point where just 5 to 8 tasks are being migrated to the next day. To get to this point took me two weeks, where I was checking task after task every single day.

So the best advice I can give you on this topic is to make sure you will prevent this from happening. Make sure that when you see you are starting getting behind, you will take an action right away to prevent it.

But if you are already at the point that even looking at your to-do list cause some headache and you don’t want to even think of sorting this out, I did just one thing which made me getting closer to not-scary-at-all-to-do list.

First of all, don’t really look for a solution, just keep working on your tasks. Start from these, which should be done long time ago and keep handling them (well, if you have something what is very important to be ready soon, and these overdue tasks can wait just a bit longer, you can start from it). For a time being, keep moving less important tasks for a next day (not longer, as you don’t want to move your problem further). For, example, I have my cleaning divided for parts of the home. I usually clean each part every day (like dusting, hoovering, mopping the floor, etc.), plus deep cleaning once a week. However, at the moment I resigned from it. I mean I still clean my home, but I am handling just one part of the home each day (except for the dishes which are being washed every day and toilet, just for the hygiene). Also I used to cook every day, as my goal for this year is to keep eating out to the minimum, but since two weeks I am cooking for at least two days (it takes very similar amount of time, but you have every second day cooking free).

Second thing is to prioritise. If you have tasks with deadline approaching, but nothing really will happen, if you’ll make them later (I have this kind of tasks related to my personal project: I gave them a deadline, but moving this deadline just a bit will not make a lot of harm really), move them for next day. Why it is important to keep moving your tasks just for one day? Before I took this strategy, I kept moving them more, like one week or something close to that. What happened, my to-do list became very light (at least for the next few days), so I just relaxed and slowed down with my work. However, when the week passed, I was in exactly same situation. Having these tasks moved just for a day will keep you remember about them. And what is important, carry on moving your tasks for the next day, just when you are not going to do anything else today. Your goal is to get as much done today as you can, so don’t make your daily list very short.

And what’s very important, is to remember that for these time when you are making up your work, you have to do all your best not to procrastinate. It is very satisfying to check these tasks each day, so try to motivate yourself this way.

And this is all I wanted to share with you in today’s post. I hope you enjoyed it. For now I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

Where shall I take motivation from?

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about days, when you just can’t do anything. Whenever you think about doing any work, you have a feeling that this is not the day. Everything seems impossible.

I think that these kind of days are happening to all of us. We are just humans and we can’t work day after day. That’s why it is important to take some breaks sometimes. However, if this happens to us every day for a long time, we should analyse what is causing that. There might be a lot of reasons for this, starting from tiredness, the nature of our tasks (they might be not something what we really enjoy to do), fear of failure (it is better not to start, if I might fail) or success (what will people think?) and in the worse scenario: it might be one of the signs of burnt out or depression. The last one is the worst, as it is a serious problem and it is very important to get help, if it is the case.

However, if you are sure that depression is not the case, there are some steps you can take to make yourself more motivated. First of all, is to determine what is causing this kind of behaviour. Maybe it is just tiredness and the only thing you need to do is to take some holiday (you can read here to see my advises before taking a holiday). Or simply one week of break from these tasks should do the job.

A bit harder thing is fear. Why so? To realise that you are afraid (whether of failure or success) might be very tricky. You can have that feeling without realising it. I used to be worried about failing. Although, I knew that every attempt of leaving my comfort zone will be connected with fear, I didn’t realised that it was keeping me away from work for quite long time. Similarly, applying for my uni two years ago made me feel same: “What if I will not manage language wise?” or “What if I will not be able even to get to university?” and finally: “What will people around me say? Will they make a fun of me?”. These were just some of the questions didding my head. And do you know what? None of them was valid. Ok, at the beginning it was a bit hard for me to understand what lecturers are saying to us. But eventually, I am able to follow their speach without special effort. Almost as English were my mother language. Well, it looks like practice really makes pefect and if I wouldn’t try, I wouldn’t know till now.

If your problem is the nature of tasks, this might be also quite hard to handle in some cases. But what you might want to consider, is to change subject of you actions. If this is not possible at the moment, just find something what you love to do and incorporate it into your schedule. I know, including more work, while you can’t force yourself to complete current tasks seems a bit weird. But remember, it does not have to be another task. Try to go for something what you actually enjoy doing. Maybe a netflix session? Going for a walk with your family? Choose what suits you the most and enjoy! Having something what you are looking forward to might motivate you to work. Any way, you’ll just finish these tasks and you are going to spend amazing time, aren’t you?

And I am going to leave you with this thought. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

Breaks and productivity

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about having a break. So far, I’ve been giving you tips on how to plan, stay productive and creative, etc. However, huge part of productivity is having breaks and holiday. We are not machines, who can work constantly. We would simply burn out very quickly. That’s why we should be including breaks in our schedule.

Ok, but sometimes having a break might seem impossible. This stress connected to busy schedule, deadlines being always just around the corner.. all this can make it impossible to rest, as our mind is still thinking about all this things. Sometimes, this is even the reason of all these sleepless nights and days passing by in zombie mode. All this make us very frustrated and is slowly bringing our motivation level towards the bottom. You must agree that it is very hard task to stay on the top of things, when we are exhausted.

That’s why it is very important to find time for resting and holiday from time to time. No matter how much packed is your schedule, it should be your priority to squeeze at least one hour for yourself each day. Time, when all your tasks stop existing, but there are only you, your family and friends instead. And maybe some netflix session from time to time 😉

This might seem impossible at some times, but as you include these breaks in your schedule, you’ll be able to enjoy your free time without feeling guilty.

And now, let’s talk about holiday. Like a proper, at least couple of days off, where you go somewhere out of the town, or just stay at home, but forget that you have anything to do. And as having a couple of hours just for yourself might already seem to be quite impossible, holiday require some preparation in advance. First of all, you might try to squeeze as many extra tasks before your time out, so there are as less deadlines hanging on you as possible.

If your project requires you to do something regularly (like posting something on your website, preparing some courses, etc.), make it in advance and schedule for the right time. Also, if you have some projects which must be ready around your holiday time (like school assignments, work projects, etc.), get them done before, so you can have less on your mind during your break.

And the most important thing, if you are able not to take any new challenges for some time, just don’t take them. As you return, there will be a lot of time for this and your holiday will be fully yours at the same time.

This is what I would like to share with you in today’s post. I hope you enjoyed it and as always, I wish you a very productive day. I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

How to plan, when so many unexpected things happen?

Hi guys,

Today I would like to tell you about time management, when your daily routine is full of unexpected events, so you can’t really predict what is going to happen. I’ll explain it on my example: since I’ve started working, I never know when my shift is going to happen, as at the moment I am working through agency. This means that I will get a message each midday, whether I can go to work or not.

That makes me unable to plan what I intend to do today evening (especially that I will be in university till 4:30; having a shift tonight means that I have to go to work straight after).

And there might be many more situations of this kind. You might have children, who are unpredictable; you might have some health issues that make you unable to know, how are you going to feel each day, etc. In fact, as many people in the world, this many possibilities.

So if you are in this kind of situation, how can you achieve your long term goals? We already know, that incorporating tasks from you plan into your schedule is impossible, isn’t it? Well, not really. You just need to be a bit more clever than all these unexpected events. Let me explain, how am I trying to cope with this.

First of all, I always make sure that I plan two days at a time, and each of these days doesn’t have too many tasks scheduled. Seeing just two things to do is going to make you more likely to actualy do this. The other thing is, that I am trying to schedule for these days tasks, which I will be able to do in as many places as possible, or in the place, where I have to be any way.

For example, this post is a task, which I can write while I am commuting, at home or in uni. Or even during the break at my work. That makes it a perfect task for today. Similarly, as I am going to be in university any way and I will have my computer with me, I am able to work on some parts of my assignments. That gives me few tasks being checked today.

Similarly, if I have no work today, I’ve already scheduled some tasks for tomorrow and I can work on them instead. Having two light days of tasks ticked as done, gives me one quite productive day. And as soon as I’ll finish my day, I can plan next day again.

This way, I am not the most productive person in the world, but at least I am taking an advantage of all the available time I have. Although, I move towards my goals much slower than I wish to, I am still closer than if I would decide that I have no time and simply gave up.

This is the only tip I will share with you today, because I am taking advantage out of only this one. As I will try some more, I will let you know.

For now I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

What shall I study to find a job after?

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about something what have been bothering me for a long time, namely: new responsibilities. As we are all living in rapidly changing world, where we can’t really be sure what is going to happen tomorrow, we are exposed to many unexpected situations. On the top of this, more and more often we can hear, that soon robots are going to replace people in many jobs.

Sometimes, during conversations with my friends, I am finding out that they don’t see any point in further learning, as it will leave them as another uneployed master or phd diploma holder. And unfortunatelly, very often they are right. Especially if they are associating their education with standard institutions only, like schools, universities and some kind of courses on top of that. Even now, we have a lot of people being graduated with the best possible marks, but still struggling to find a job of their dream. But on the other hand, there are a lot of people, who hardly graduated from primary school, but doing great any way.

So what in reality matters when we are trying to plan our future? How to choose a degree, which will not end up as three years being wasted, leaving us with student loan? While thinking about answers for these questions, I came up with some tips for myself:

  • Whatever degree you choose, make sure you have a plan

This is very important thing for me. Starting a university, you are going to learn a lot of various things. At the same time, you are not going to need all knowledge, which you are going to get there. Having some kind of plan might help you decide, on which subjects do you need to focus more and which of them require you to have just some basic knowledge. Even if during your course you’ll change my mind, you will still have basic knowledge to explore the topic much quicker.

  • Make sure that you are going to learn something, what is interesting for you

This is something what a lot of people are forgetting about. Studying for even just three years might be quite a hard task. But if you study something what makes you bored… well, I wish you good luck… But if you are thinking that it is just three years, you can survive it, remember that there are many years of work in choosen profession ahead of you. So maybe it is worthed to consider, wether you really can survive?

  • Don’t focus just on your university work

I think, this is the most important thing. While you are learning, try to find as many opportunities as you can to gain some experience. It is connected with your plan. You might try to gain skills, which you will be able to take advantage in your future work of (and they don’t have to be gained in your dream field of work). Try to meet as many people from your future field. They are experienced and they can keep advising you during your learning process.

  • Don’t stop learning

Having your dreamed job, doesn’t mean that you are done with learning. As I mentioned at the begining, today’s world changes with light speed and you need to keep up with it. So make sure you do and you’ll be able to sleep with peace. If you think that your profession might disappear in short future, learn something new, so you’ll have more opportunities when you are forced to look for new job.

To summarise, living in changing world requires from us much more awareness and taking responsibility for our choices. We can’t think just about present, but we should consider how our skills might help us in the future. Just in case, if what we intend to do, does not exist any more.

And with this thought I will leave you today. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

Importance of having goals and including them in your plan

Hi guys,

Today, I have decided to write about importance of having goals and including them in your plan (or schedule). I think I will leave topic of planning for now (at least till I will not discover something new), so this is going to be last post of this “series”.

Why having goals is important? Whether you are going to achieve them or not, they are some kind of signposts on the way. You can follow them, or choose some other way, but whenever you are lost, they are always there for you.

I can’t really think of all moments, where I had no idea what to do, so I’ve just wasted my time doing nothing. List of goals might be great list of possible things to do while you are bored. I saw some videos on YouTube, where people said that they are preparing a list, where they put all possible activities, they can do while bored. It might be something like clean the flat, read book, work out, etc. They don’t necessary have to be things connected to achieving their goals. But if, you have list which completing will lead you to tick this box near next goal, why not go for it? Any way… You are looking for something to do…

Also, it is quite important to just have at least some kind of guidance, when it comes to become someone, who you want to be. There are a lot of people, who want to become let’s say a pilot, programmer or doctor, but they are not even trying to get closer to their goals. Simply, because they have no idea what shall they do. They are not really aware, what would bring them closer to their goal, so they just keep spending next hours wondering about that.

I know this from my experience. I want to be a programmer. But I haven’t got any plan how to get there. So I was just stuck in my dreams without progressing. Since I’ve prepared my plan, the very first thing was to do research and find out what do I need to be able to do what I wish to do. It included what technologies do I need learn and after I looked for a YouTube tutorials for beginners, where I got some basics about chosen technology.

My next step was to create an application, which probably will not bring me any incomes, but by developing it, I am able to know what to research to progress. As I already know, that in programming there are many ways to achieve one goal, I am trying to find as many solutions as I can and see what gives me a better performance. This way, I am learning many more commands and libraries. I believe, that this will allow me to decide which solution will be more convenient for my future applications and I hope that I will be able to understand why.

All this became possible for me, as I did a research on the topic of how to learn programming and I picked all tips, which seemed perfect for me to incorporate them into my plan. I also have list with all other tips which I am not taking advantage of at the moment. I’ve decided to keep these ideas any way, just in case, if my current plan does not work as I wish.

You might also ask, how do I incorporate these things I’ve spoken about. It was quite simple (but it was quite hard to think about it in the first place), as I just added one task each week, which is find as many solutions to chosen programming problem and pick the best one after testing all of them.

This is just one of the examples why having planned goals included in your schedule can be very powerful tool on the way to become more productive person. It can also help you to get closer to the place, where you wish to see yourself.

I am going to leave you with this thought for now. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my Wednesday’s post.

Daria

How do I plan?

Hi guys,

Today, as we have tips on setting goals and actually working towards them, I am going to tell you, how I am personally planning my goals. The important thing is, that I am not the perfect planner and the most motivated person on the internet. But what is important too, most of the people out there were at the similar point as me (and maybe you), where they had to figure out the next step, how to boost amount of task they are getting done and finally, how to work smart, so they are getting closer to their goals with each task they are doing.

As I have been watching a lot of YouTube videos of people who achieved their goals (or they are on great path to do so) and I’ve read a lot of blogs showing such stories, I came to some conclusions. First of it was, that some of the ways these people have taken are simply not for me. And it is not because their way is wrong, it is not working or something like this. No! There is a lot of great ideas out there! The only thing which was making it not suitable for me, was difference in priorities of these people and priorities of mine.

Let me explain it. For a lot of people, the most important thing was to earn some particular amount of money, so that their families can have better life. You know… children can take any course they want, have great Christmas gifts, designed clothes, the best holiday, etc. My goal is very similar in the long run. I wish that in the future I don’t have to worry about each bill, make sure that after paying it we will still have anything to put into the pot, etc. But at the same time, I can’t afford to work 16 hours each day to achieve this. And this is not because of my laziness (or at least not only because of it). Having enough money is important, but not at the cost of my family. I don’t want my husband to be able to see me just once a week, I don’t want my son, who is going to be born quite soon, not to be sure who his mother is and things like this. I am sure there are a lot of you out there, who think similarly.

So having this example in mind, I saw stories of people, who have worked for 16 hours for let’s say a year or two (now their work count looks much better), but for me it isn’t the possibility. Although, I don’t say that their way is wrong, for me it would be as I am trying to give better life to my family, but not at the cost of my family. I hope, it does make sense. So I have made some schedule, which works for me.

But before I’ll move into it, I would like to tell you what I am using to do my plan. Track of all my goals, meetings, task, deadlines, etc. I keep it in my bullet journal. I’ve started my in 2017, but I haven’t kept up with it for very long time, as I saw it as waste of time (setting up each page, making it look clean, etc). But as I’ve started having more and more specific goals, and my schedule became more and more congested, I’ve realised that this is the best option for me. It gives me great flexibility, as I can add any page, any tracker or whatever I want. And this haven’t been possible in any of my other planners (well, I had one on my phone, where I could add whatever I wanted too, but the problem was, that whenever my battery died, I couldn’t add or check anything).

So what do I have in my bullet journal? First of all I have calendar for the whole year. I can put there all meetings and all things which are going to happen in the future. That makes it easy to have quick glimpse at everything, without necessity of going through all pages to find any particular date.

I have also my goals pages, where I have all my goals written and split up for the steps. That gives me an overview on what I need to do to achieve each of my goals. If some tasks have deadlines, they are written there as well. This is very helpful, when I  am planning my days. As after handling my everyday tasks, I can see what should be done next, to allow me to achieve my goals.

My planing schedule happens every evening. I am scheduling all my tasks according to time I have available next day (when I book time for my every day things, like cooking, cleaning, going to work or appointments, spending my time with my husband, etc.). I make sure that every day I have at least one task, on which I can work on the way, as my travelling to work (yeah, I found a job recently too) and university takes around one hour. Usually, I don’t decide on order of my tasks. I know that it might be very helpful thing to do, but as there is a lot of unexpected things happening in the course of the day, I have realised, that not always it is possible to follow very strict schedule. The only exception is, if the task has a very short deadline (like needs to be done same day or very early the next day; that time I am making sure I handle it as a first).

There are also some days, where I am not able to managed all I have planned. These task are being handled as first the very next day. This way, at the end of each week, I don’t have any tasks, which are too overdue (it used to happen a lot to me in past). So this is just basic planning, which happens every evening, before I go to bed.

There is also one bigger session of planning every end of the month. I’ve been doing it for three months now and it is working amazing so far. During this sessions, I am picking one or two goals in which I wish to progress the most during coming month. I have one monthly to do list, with tasks associated with these goals and as I am picking task for each day, I am starting with these tasks first.

This is basically my way of planning for now. It might change overtime, but at the moment it works for me perfectly. This ends my post, so as always, I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

So you have plan – what next?

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about the way, how we can work on goals, when we have a plan. It seems simple, doesn’t it? Just make plan and follow it. But in that case, why so many people who prepare plans fail?

The answer is relatively easy: they don’t have good tactics to work with the plan. Very often (I used to be one of these people too), they don’t really know what they are supposed to do. Plan, of course is a very important part, but all work is on our side. We can’t forget, that writing something on the piece of paper or in any electronic form will not make it just happen.

And here are a lot of possibilities to attempt your plan. You might just leave it and hoe for better tomorrow, or you can actually keep progressing. But even if you decide to work on your plan, you have to do this wisely, in such a way that will suit you. I will try to introduce one possible way to work on your goals, but bear in mind that there are many other available. As each of us is different, different things will be perfect for each of us. If this technique will not be perfect for you, do your research, or let me know in the comment section below, so I can write about some other technique, too.

  • Set particular time for your work

This might be a very wise and helpful step. You know your schedule the best, so you might decide that every day at 6 pm, or any other time, you will be sitting and working. Completely focused on what you have to do. If your schedule allow you for more such days every week, you can decide to work towards different goal each day a week. But even if you don’t have as much time, you can set just one session a week and plan in advance, what are you going to work on. For sure, you don’t want to waste your productive time for wondering what to do).

  • Switch off all distractions

This might be quite hard sometimes. Of course, switching off your phone or TV playing in the background might be already challenging, but if on top of this you have children, it might become even harder. That’s why make sure, that you plan your working session at the time when your children are asleep. TV and phone? Just switch them off. It might seem hard at the beginning, but I am sure you will survive for this 2 hours 😉

Other distraction is also mess in your workplace. Try to make sure, that your desk (if you are working by the desk) is clean and tidy, that there are no unnecessary things to catch your attention while you are working.

Don’t give up

You should remember that not always everything will go according to your plan. Keep in mind that everyone has worse days in their life. What is important, don’t take it as a reason to stop carry on. Any way, there is still the whole year left. But remember don’t push it away too long either. Time flies and if you leave everything for last moment, you will probably not be able to catch on in the future. Your list, even if it used to seem manageable, might overwhelm you (especially when you’ll try to catch up everything in December). That’s why it is so important to be consistent and slowly keep moving towards your goals.

These are all advises I would like to share with you today. I hope they will help you to achieve your goals. For now I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

New Year’s goals and resolution – how to achieve them?

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about New Year’s resolutions and goals. As January approached, there might be a lot of things we want to achieve in 2019. But it isn’t new that very often we realise at the end of each year, that we haven’t progress with our goals a lot. There might be various reasons for this, starting from being unwell, through unexpected events that happened in our life, to just being lazy. However, no matter what was the reason, we might feel bad about it.

That’s why, today I would like to share with you some tips on how to prepare list of resolutions and goals for 2019, so it will not be too overwhelming, but at the same time you will be able to proudly say, that all or almost all of your goals have been ticked off.

Make sure that your list has an end

This might seem kind of simple, but having this new boost of energy and motivation, makes it very easy to overestimate your time. Especially, that there are 12 months in front of you, equivalent to 365 days and many, many hours. And that’s true. But it is worth it to remember that there are a lot of other activities that are going to take some of this time. You might want to eat, sleep, meet your friends and family. Sometimes you might need to spare some time for this newest episode on Netflix, too. Having your list too long might discourage you to do anything, especially if half way through you’ll realise that it’s length haven’t at all or got just a bit shorter than it used to be. In case you can always add something on as you go, so make sure you are not overwhelming yourself at the beginning.

Keep your goals specific

There is probably no worst thing I can think of while planning my goals. Something like “I want to be rich” or “I want to read more” is very hard to verify. Because, if you are earning £2000 monthly, does it mean you are already rich? Or if you used to read one book a year, but this year you will manage to read one and a half, do you read more? Are you happy with it? So set actual amount and work towards it. You can always increase it, if you’ll realise that you are going to achieve it earlier.

Make a plan how you are going to achieve your goals

Having just a list of goals, even the best one, probably will not make you achieve them. For example, if your goal is to visit some country this year, make sure that you’ll schedule research (sometimes you might need some extra documents, you would probably like to know which cities you would like to visit or if you go to just one specific city, knowing what you want to see there might be helpful too. When you know that, you can schedule working on necessary documents, planning your budget, booking tickets, hotels, etc.

Similarly, if you want to learn a new skill, you would like to plan they way you are going to do this. Are you going to join a course, or use free resources? And good thing might be scheduling some time for it (for example an hour a day, or two hours a week).

Having all these steps for all your goals and actually scheduling them in your planner is going to help you to focus on what is important now. That will ensure  that you are not wasting your time on things, that are not so urgent yet.

Prioritise goals to make sure you don’t have too many goals requiring a lot of effort

This might seem a bit weird. Of course, you want to achieve as much as you can, why limit yourself? Well, this is very closely connected to the first point of this list. Even though, year has a lot of days, there are also other activities you might like to focus on. Goals are important, but they will not make for all your life. You might need to work, you might have a family and friends to spend time with. Definitely you need to eat, sleep and find some time to just relax and do nothing. Being productive require finding a balance between work and all other stuff human does. That’s why previous point is so important. Having actions for your goals scheduled, you can see how much time you are going to really have. And if it will turn out that there is not sufficient amount, you might resign out of one or two of your goals just for now and as you handle remaining one, you might add them as a replacement. That’s why having your goals prioritised, will help you to decide on which goals you definitely want to focus on and which of them could wait just a bit longer.

A good idea might be to have some kind of running list, where you have all goals you are working on at the moment, and some additional list, where are other goals to be added, if time will allow you to do so. Even if you will not be able to achieve all goals from both lists, you will have predefined list for next year and the only thing you’ll have to do, will be to ensure that all of them are still valid and eventually add some new one.

These are all the tips I would like to share with you today. I hope that they will be of any use for you. For now I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

How to work on personal project, when there is so much to do? (6 steps I’ve taken)

Hi guys,

Today, I would like to focus on how can you do some stuff on side, if you have full time job, family to look after and many other things to take care of. For me, it seemed to be impossible at some point. I usually came back from work and the only thing I wanted to do is to take shower, eat something and go to the bed. But still, I needed to cook, do some cleaning and when I was done with it, it became insanely late already.

Basically, at the moment I am starting my job at 2 pm and I am done by 10 pm, so when I am home, it is easily 10-11 pm. And this was my excuse for not doing anything after that. Of course, in the morning I couldn’t do anything, as I had to prepare food, so it wouldn’t take me too long to cook in the evening and generally get ready for work. And in the evening I used to make sure that food is ready, take shower and just go to the bed. At least this is what I believed at that time.

So now I would like to share with you some steps I have take to change this situation.

STEP 1: Track how do you spend your time and determine where it goes

This might seem easy and pointless. But it isn’t. If you will be honest with yourself, you might realise that you have a lot of time spend on activities, you are not even aware of. When I first started tracking, I decided not to see results for one week. And when seven days passed, I got shocked. Each day I have spent at least 2-3 hours watching next episodes on Netflix or YouTube; I was sitting and doing literally nothing for at least half an hour each day. And although amount of this time spent at not being productive was so huge, I wasn’t aware that I am doing this at all. And I haven’t even mentioned how much time I have spent on scrolling through my social media…

Step 2: Minimise an amount of time spent on unproductive activities

Tracking my time helped me also determine, when I am wasting hours out of my time. And I simply made sure that I have some productive tasks scheduled for this part of the day. I also make sure that there will be a reminder refreshing my memory. There is still problem of procrastination, by having my phone screaming to me, that this is time to get work done, I am forcing myself, to shorten my Netflix session (usually, one episode does pretty well as well). And to reduce time spent on scrolling through my social media, I have scheduled a time for this particular activity. I have also removed spamming and not really useful users and simply stopped following them. So my news feed became much shorter and my scheduled time is more than enough to go through it.

Step 3: Find some time for activities you reduced

This have been mentioned in previous step, but for me it turned out to be very helpful to reduce time spent on other activities instead of eliminating them completely. I had an attempt to stop doing them, but usually I used to fail. Having this scheduled time for these activities just make me stick to the new way of living.

Step 4: Sleep less

And this will not work for everyone. If you already sleep only 4 hours, this advise is completely reversed for you: “Sleep more!”. However, if you are like me and you like to sleep for 12 hours each day, consider reducing it to 8 hours. I did it and I have gained 4 hours of awake time each day. And guess what? I am still rested. But remember, don’t reduce it too much. Being sleepy will reduce sharpness of your brain and it will make it harder to stay focused. This way, even if you’ll get this extra hours, you are most likely to get much less work done too.

Step 5: Try to prepare meals for at least two days

This was just amazing for me. Cooking bigger amounts of food doesn’t take much more time, but saves you a time the next day. This way, instead of spending one hour each day on cooking, you are going to spend one hour every other day. This is definitely a good deal.

Step 6: Take an advantage from your commuting time

Are you travelling to work by train, or just walk? You can always find some podcast to listen on the way. This will not slow you and at the same time, you can get skills which will help you in things you want to do as your personal project.

And these are all advises I have for you today. I hope you enjoyed it and that they will be helpful for you. If you have any other advises, I will be happy to read them in the comment section.

For now, I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria