Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A little organization....

Honestly, I'm a little all over the place. I have so much I want to do that I'm just being completely sporadic. So time to change!

I decided that I work the best with calendars. I like physically seeing the month ahead of me and seeing my tasks written throughout. So I made a calendar.

I made one for July 25th - August 25th.

My process:

1. What do I want to get completed this month? I made a list of things I want to do, projects I have to work on, TV show schedules I want to watch, etc... I made note of everything.

2. What types of tasks do I want on my calendar? Then I decided what my calendar would show. I decided on everything! I thought if I had separate calendars for different things, I would probably favor one schedule or just completely forget about one. I decided I wanted everything together on the same page.

3. How should I format my calendar? Hand make it? Microsoft Excel? Find a website that helps you organize things? Microsoft Project? Buy a daily planner? Get a desk calendar? Buy a graphic wall calendar? So many options! I wanted mine to be tangible, as well as cleanly edited or revised. The best option for me was Microsoft Excel. You could easily move around ideas, change format, change anything! and it doesn't have to be permanent and you can't ever mess it up. You could always resave and reprint. After I decided on making it on Excel, I decided to color code my tasks. I would just simply write, or type, the task I had planned in the appropriate box, with it's assigned color.
  • TV Show
  • Craft
  • Sewing
  • Scrapbook
  • Blog Posts
  • House/General
Then, specific dates like birthdays and visits were written on the top of the date box in black ink but italicized. For the TV shows, they're written in a smaller font at the bottom of the box as a little reminder.

4. How should I assign my tasks? This was the hard part for me. I was thinking about how my weeks usually go, how much free time I have on what days, what days I'm most productive, things like that. I didn't just want to write things to do on the calendar. I wanted to assign them so they'd be realistic for me to get done. First I thought about which projects I wanted to get done the most, what days they'd best fit in, how long they'd take, how many breaks I will or won't take... it depends! When I sew, I take a lot of breaks. My room doesn't have an AC so when I get too hot or frustrated (which happens a lot) I take a couple minutes of just sitting in Ben's room collecting myself in the cold. Or I'll sit outside for a smoke break and try to clear my head. But when I scrapbook, my head is just stuck looking down, positioning and repositioning and gluing and cutting. I work different depending on what it is. I made sure I thought about this when I picked the days of what to work on. I really feel that I did good on this. I spent a good amount of time thinking about it.

5. Well, did it work?! Too early to tell! Today is the first day of my self-assigned project schedule. Today I have Clean kitchen, Scrapbook Flower Canvas, and Currently Post on my to-do list. Then in little font on the bottom, is 10 PM - Virgin Diaries. I'll have one down by the end 3PM today, the Currently blog post!

6. What are other ways to stay on top of things? The calendar isn't enough for me. I really am trying to push myself into a more productive habit. I decided to put the Reminders App on the iPhone to use. I always use this App when I'm taking classes, to keep track of homework and classwork. I decided to put it to use for my projects! In the morning I'm going to put in my daily tasks and set reminders for the timeblock I want to work on them. I'll probably try and clean the kitchen within a half hour of being home from work, shower, eat, and get ready to start the scrapbook flower canvas project shortly after. With, of course, my Reminders going off every fifteen minutes. I need to be more disciplined and less lazy! On with the crafting! I also am going to start embracing post it notes a lot more. At work, I run through post-its. I want to get some colored ones to hang reminders in my room and on my laptop to have little motivators. My other secret weapon is Ben. Whenever I try to break a habit, I always have Ben as my backbone. I'll tell him "don't let me have ____ if I do _____" or "make me _____ if I don't _____" and Ben usually sticks to it. Permission to annoy me and keep me from something I want? Ben is usually up for it.

7. Anything else I want to add? The best thing about doing it on Excel, is that I could open up the document and move around everything and change my entire month around. Or I could add to my already packed schedule or delete it all! Last night I thought a lot about my calendar. How if I had tasks to do today how long would they take and when would I have fit them in, but also, what else should I add? Last night I made myself soup for dinner and made some apple crisp for dessert. Ben got home from class and ordered Chinese. Then I thought, I should put goals on my calendar. First one being, COOK dinner (with real food) at least twice a week. Twice a week sounds like a low expectation, but I'd be setting myself up for a downfall if I try anything more. I consider cooking dinner as making a meal with meat and preparing everything myself. Usually it's store bought pizza dough and we make pizza or grilled cheese or frozen things. Ah! We're getting older and it'll be sooner than later that our bodies change and we can't eat the crap like we do now. I also considered adding future blog features, and other little things to my calendar.

I hope this could help some other overwhelmed future crafter. Haha. I know it helped me spelling out what I expected from myself and typing it and rereading it here. This blog is helping me so much. Just being able to keep a record of what I've been doing, it just helps me stay motivated and just want to fill this blogs' archive with awesome content and watch myself grow as a woman, adult, and a crafty lady.

Yay! :)

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