Tag Archives: Passion Planner

Tracking my day vs. scheduling my day

planner

It appears I’m not yet ready to start scheduling my day, the way I had planned when I initially downloaded the Passion Planner pages.

I captured my first try at scheduling my day in my “A Day in the Life” post last week—a big fail on the one hand, because I was totally off my planned schedule, but on the other hand, a win in that I stayed aware of my time the entire day.

Staying aware of my time is something that tends to get away from me, especially now when I’m not plunged into back-to-back deadlines (well, this week I am, but not week by week by week like I am during my busy period).

Since that day, I’ve been religiously scheduling the following day—every night before I go to bed, I sit at my desk, armed with my highlighters and carefully charting out the next day in my planner. And every day, I fail to follow my careful schedule. Sigh.

I don’t think I’m planner-challenged (at least, the evidence isn’t all in yet!). But I do think I don’t know how long it takes me to do things, and that, perhaps, is a skill I should acquire. And once I’ve acquired that skill, I can maybe tackle the whole scheduling my day thing again and see how it goes.

I’d actually been planning to try a week of tracking my time after I read Laura Vanderkam’s 168 Hours earlier this year. And then I never got around to it because January and part of February were so deadline-driven, my weekly schedule looked like this: WAKE UP. WORK. SLEEP. REPEAT. Nothing much to track, really.

So I’m going to spend this week tracking my time in my Passion Planner—so it will be a little like a diary of sorts. I have three more deadlines (one tomorrow, one on Thursday that looks like it might shift and one on Friday) so it’s not a normal non-busy week for me, but still, I’d like to see where I’m putting my time!

Have you ever tracked your time during your day? Any surprises? And are you a whiz at scheduling your days? Any tips would be appreciated!

Photo credit.

Getting organized with the Passion Planner (I hope)

I really need to get organized.

When my assignments were mainly indexing ones, throwing up my deadlines onto Google Calendar more or less did the trick. I always knew what was coming due and how many days I’d need to make sure I met the deadline. I could hold the coming week’s to-dos in my head quite easily.

But now that I’ve “opened up to life”, so to speak, there are so many more things to keep track of. Things are getting busy again, but this time around it’s not just the indexes. While I’ve got indexing deadlines coming up, I also have several freelance article deadlines due over the next two weeks, too (eight of them, to be exact). Then there are the things I’ll be doing in the marketing position I’m going to be taking on, plus all the blogging events that are coming up (Readalongs! The Readathon! Bloggiesta Twitter chats!).

Not to mention my own personal writing projects. I’m enrolled in Kelley Armstrong’s Dark Fantasy summer course at U of T this summer, and I need to have the first 20 pages of my dark fantasy WIP ready for the class, as it has a workshopping component. I also have work to critique for my writing buddy Memory, and occasionally for the members of my online writing group, Suey, Tif and Kathy. Plus I have a new middle grade crit partner, Lisen – we’re exchanging 25 pages of our middle grade manuscripts each week.

Eek! Just writing out those two paragraphs sent me into overwhelm. I can’t keep track of everything with just Google Calendar. I need to plan my days out now, because there are just too many things to juggle in my mind. The problem? I haven’t used a planner or an agenda for ages, other than my Bullet Journal, which I mainly use to house my thoughts and various “collections” of ideas.

I need something heavy-duty. So I’m giving the Passion Planner a try. A few friends on Facebook have been talking about it, and it seems like the right kind of planner to juggle both work and passion project stuff. My life is basically divided between these two types of to-dos, and I like the idea of an all-in-one that can keep me organized while still making the non-work stuff as much of a priority (this is something I’ve not been very good at doing).

passion planner It’s too late to get a physical copy of the 2015 planner, but you can download either the 2015 Passion Planner PDFs for free (you just need to tweet about it to get access) or an undated version, also for free (no tweet necessary). I opted for the dated version since, knowing me, having to fill in the date would be just one more obstacle to actually using the planner.

Don’t you love how colourful it is? I’ve never had any luck with previous planners, but I’m hoping this one is different enough that it will “stick” and get me organized. There’s even a space for a gratitude list. (I haven’t been doing so well keeping up with my Happiness Jar, I’m afraid.)

My plan is to fill it out for this week and see how it goes. Because I really really need to get organized!

What about you? Do you have an organization/planning method you use and would recommend?