“Focused action beats brilliance.” – Mark Sanborn
Remote work has brought a lot of flexibility in our life but at the same time, it has created many overheads as well. One of the overhead is losing control of our schedule. I tried many different ways to overcome and finally came with this minimalist framework that helped me to navigate through my schedule smoothly.
In simple term,
framework is something that has a definite structure and a path to navigate through the structure.
Here are 5 simple steps to add this framework to your life and try if it works for you.
To have a routine, we need some kind of reminder. A calendar invite is kind of a good thing to start with. The calendar invite also gives a sense that this is important and no doubt this is going to be the most important meeting for you.
Create a calendar invite for 5 days a week (Mon - Fri) for 30 minutes. Call it Personal Sync.
It would be great if it’s done as the first thing before you start your work. My typical day starts at 11:00 AM, so I have created the self invite from 11:00 - 11:30 AM. Create a google document and attach the document link to the invite. We will talk about in the coming section what this document will be used for. Let’s join the meeting.
The day started, and you are in your first important meeting of the day, meeting with yourself. Create a heading named with the current date. Under the heading, start adding all the todos that you plan for the day. Break the tasks as granular as possible. This will help you complete the task faster because it will give you clarity on the steps needed to complete the task.
In case you are struggling to come up with todos. Start with What/How. It will guide you to create ToDos. For example, what do I need to fix this issue? Perhaps, a meeting with a team or follow up with a person. That becomes a to-do for you.
Once you have created the todos for the day, it’s time to prioritize those todos.
Though, creating a list of todos is one step towards clarity of work.
But, it also creates confusion around what to be done first.
Everybody has limited office hours each day, and it’s important you pick up the tasks in order of importance.
Here is one very popular and proven way to approach such a scenario. Start prioritizing your tasks in four categories.
Now, you have created the todos, you have planned your day. Let’s start acting on them one by one.
Now, the actual work starts. Start with the most important tasks first. As you progress the day, keep taking notes in the same document.
Write down any question that pops up during the day.
Write down your struggles while doing so and your thought process to overcome them.
Write down all your wins - be it small or big.
Write down about those people who helped you during the day in any way and appreciate them when you get a chance to do that.
Indirectly, this is your personal-professional diary.
Please note, for the same day, todos should be always at the top and notes and questions below it. So, literally, you are on top of the things 😊.
So, it’s the end of the day now. Look at your document. Go through notes and questions. Create further action items using the notes and questions. They become the todos for the next day along with newly added todos. And this circle continues.
The google document that was maintained as part of personal sync can be used for many purposes but not limited to:
I hope this was helpful. Let me know in the comment section what are your personal hacks that you use in your daily life.