Thursday, March 06, 2014

Planning & Organization

Hello, my dear readers! I am often asked by friends, readers or followers how I manage the balance between university, job, blogging and different projects and how I still get things done without being overwhelmed and I thought it would be nice to share a blogpost about it.
When organizing my everyday life and keeping the balance between all different kinds of parts which I'm busy with, it's super important for me to have several lists, always make sketches and write down every single idea and deadline in order to not forget anything.
Usually carrying a little notebook with me, it helps me to write down ideas immediately and I have separate idea lists for all kinds of different projects and goals (e.g. DIY blogpost ideas, party concepts, private tasks, etc).
At the beginning of the year, I made myself a monthly calendar where I insert weekly tasks, deadlines, project dates and even private dates. Thus, I always have a monthly overview and it totally helps me setting priorities and keeping in mind what's next.
Apart from having a detailed calendar and a notebook, I also have a sketchbook. I do not always carry it with me (it's big and heavy), but this is where I draw sketches into when I'm at home and this is also the book in which I collect sketches and drawings that I make when I'm on the way. There I collect ideas for new shop products, make drawings of handmade gift ideas or sketches for projects.
Moreover, I also use this book when developing the concept for an upcoming party or food table and make sketches of the food display and table setup and order to save time on the day of the little photo shooting.
In addition to all my different methods of keeping my life organized, I have a detailed to do list as a google drive document. In the past, I have always been using a paper to do list, but it's getting on my nerves when I've already crossed out a lot and the list still looks to full. :D What is more, keeping a virtual to do list makes it easier to insert new tasks when I'm somewhere else and when I don't have my list with me, I only have to open my doc, for example with my smartphone. Moreover, keeping a virtual list makes it easier to switch priorities and the order of tasks, lets you highlight several points and makes it easy having different categories and sub-lists on one page. On top of my list, there are always super urgent projects (e.g. to do's for blog cooperations), then there's a section for normal private tasks (like making a dentist appointment or preparing a birthday gift for a friend) and at the bottom there's a suuuper long list of ideas for blog content (DIYs, recipes, series, bigger projects, etc.) so that I never forget anything or run out of ideas.
In addition to this virtual list, I always have one tiny piece of paper on my desk with the most urgent tasks for the next couple of days. I edit this list every few days and this helps me not to lose track of priorities.
Moreover, I also have a google doc table for blog cooperations: a list of completed projects, tasks which still need to be finished and an overview over the conditions that the cooperation partner and I have decided on so that I don't have to browse all my past mails each time I'm looking for a details. I also have such a list for ads on my blog (with an overview of who booked which time span, size, etc). I'm a visual person and this makes it easier for me to get all details at one glance.
Last but not least, I use Pinterest a lot: I looove this tool and I love a lot that you can create private boards. I use these for pinning the tools and supplies I need for certain ideas and it's also great for secretly or publicly pinning inspiration for upcoming projects.

As you can see, I do not simply have a normal to do list, but I use several completely different methods for organizing my private life and work life. Because I love making lists and because I love to plan and to organize, this makes it a lot easier for me. I absolutely think that a good plan is worth a lot and solves an anormous amount of time when getting started and making an idea come true.

How do you organize everything? Any additional advice or personal preferences and tricks? :) I'd love to learn more!

Happy day!
Lu

7 comments:

  1. Hey Lu,
    Die virtuelle To-Do-List ist ein super Tipp, da wäre ich nicht drauf gekommen!
    Ich finde es ja auch immer total interessant, wie andere Leute sich ihre Tage einteilen. Ich habe festgestellt, dass ich eher ein Morgentyp bin: wichtige Sachen erledige ich besser morgens (auch wenn mir das frühe Aufstehen schwer fällt). ;)
    Wie ist das bei dir? Es würde mich wirklich interessieren, wie du deine Zeit managst. Meine Tage haben jedenfalls eindeutig weniger Stunden als die bei anderen Leuten ;)
    Lieber Gruß
    Maggie

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  2. Hallo Lu,
    es ist sehr interessant zu wissen, wie du deinen Tag so planst.
    Ich liebe es Listen mit der Hand zu erstellen, weil man da immer wieder was dazu malen kann und markieren kann. Aber eine virtuelle Liste ist auch ganz praktisch, da man immer darauf zugreifen kann.
    Ich bin auch eher ein Morgentyp sowie Maggie, aber dafür muss ich auch erst mal früh aufstehen und das fehlt mir manchmal schwer, wenn noch mein kleiner Hund sich an mich kuschelt :-D
    Liebe Grüße Malwina

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  3. Wow! Your lists make mine look like I'm in Grade 1!! I love how you use lists and planners to organize your busy days as well as things you've already completed. I've much to learn!! Thanks for sharing.

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  4. but you're already a manager!
    this post is very useful and also nice and very beautiful!
    love!

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  5. I'm the same with having several different notebooks for several different things like college, work, blog and personal projects. But i always struggle to keep up with these and having to carry them all round can be a pain. I should probably invest in one that will work for everything but im still yet to find one that i fall totally inlove with!
    Lauren | OhHay Blogs!
    xxx

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  6. HI I like your blog! the colors and the simple things...
    XXX

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  7. Liebe Lu,
    ich finde es superinteressant zu sehen, wie andere sich organisieren - und bei dir sind natürlich selbst die To do-Listen wunderhübsch und so bunt!:) Ich muss mir auch immer alles aufschreiben und irgendwo sammeln, aber ich bin eher der Handschrift-Typ. Am Anfang der Woche ist meine To do-Liste nur einfarbig, wenn schon einiges abgehakt ist, markiere ich mir die übrigen Dinge farblich passend zu dem Tag, an dem ich sie erledigen will. Aber deine Google-doc Idee ist wirklich gut, vielen Dank für den tollen Post!:)
    Alles Liebe
    Julia

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I'm always happy about feedback and about getting to know your opinion! :) Thank you!