Goals and Projects

Some of us can get by with a little gas-station calendar pinned to the wall and a bunch of sticky notes attached to the monitor. That's great if you have to remember the dog-groomer appointment, but most of us dream big, and pursue big projects. Sticky notes don't cut it any more. That's why we designed a number of templates for outlining and managing your goals and projects. The D*I*Y Planner kit has dozens and dozens of ways for you to ensure that whatever you do, it's going to be a big success.

(The list below doesn't include generic action lists, which you can find in the Actions and Agendas page.)

Harmony
Harmony is about balancing your life, which is one of the hardest things to do in this day and age. We work endless hours at the office, ignoring our families. Or we spend so much time with friends that we neglect the more internal, spiritual, inspirational aspects of our lives.

The Harmony form is designed to help you balance your life. The yin-yang up top is surrounded by four boxes for outlining this week's physical, social, mental and spiritual goals. (Spiritual, in this context, is not necessarily religious but inspirational, such as reading a profound book, communing with nature, or learning life-lessons from a mentor.) By setting one realistic goal in each box, you can ensure that your own personal development in each aspect is underway.

Below at left is a place for setting each of your life roles. Think about the roles you play: employee, husband, volunteer, athelete, parent, and so forth. Put a role in each of the title areas, and then list a few items to do that week that helps fulfill that role. As a parent, for example, you may wish to spend a few hours building a bird house with your son, or as a volunteer, you may wish to make arrangements for a library funding drive. Ensuring that each role has actions to be done will help your overall sense of balance and purpose.

At right, the telescope signifies your overall vision for the week: use this to set a strong personal or professional goal: "Show more affection to my wife and children" or "Get product ready for launch on Saturday." Beneath that are flagged projects/categories and actions. These are not necessarily the same as GTD's Next Actions. Next Actions are small tasks, whereas the actions under the flagged projects are larger items that help "feed" the next actions. For example, you may have "Finish report", which may take a couple of days, but your next actions list would break down this into bite-sized doable chunks.

Harmony is not only about planning: it's about meditating, thinking, learning to balance, and making sure that all major aspects of your life are working together to make you a better, more productive person.

Goal Planning
Everyone has dreams and desires. This Goal Planning template will help you take stock and keep track of every dream you wish to
attain. Simply write down what the goal is, and what would define it as wildly successful, and then use the rest of the fields on this form to map out each step to get to that goal.
Objectives
Use the Objectives form for outcomes-based planning. Each of these can be a "mini-plan," or compliment a full project plan as a sub-project. Outline the benefits, obstacles and steps to meeting the objective. You can set a date, priority, and description for each objective as well. You may use the "Outcome" field either as a note describing the final outcome, or as a place to visualise what the successful outcome will be. (Whichever you find more effective, being a by-product of the way in which you approach your projects.)
Priority Matrix
We constantly live in crisis mode, jumping from one urgent demand to another without according (or even thinking about) how important those tasks are. Use the Priority Matrix to brainstorm all the tasks you face, and where they lie in terms of urgency and importance. According to Stephen Covey (see First Things First), our chief goal should be in reducing the number of "urgent/non-important" tasks in our lifes, and instead concentrate on those "non-urgent/important" tasks that lead to longer-term advantages. Many people do this brainstorming as part of a weekly or monthly review, so they can keep their day-to-day actions in the proper perspective.
Project Details
This is the ultimate template to track all the little details of a single project. The Project Details form gives you fields to break
down and fully realise your project from conception to completion.
The first page contains fields for start and end dates, project
description, resource planning, and notes; while the second page
contains in depth information on team members, budgets, and materials that the project requires to be successful. Use this two-page template as a cover sheet that contains all the high level details of every project your working on so that you have them when anyone asks you, 'What the budget of XYZ is' again.
Project Outline
This is the next form in a series of project oriented templates that help organise and define a large scale project. The Project Outline template helps track specific project goals and any challenges and solutions the project is faced with. It also keeps track of any specific tasks and provides a completion checkbox when each one is done. A second page is also included that provides a full page's worth of Tasks if you need more space to list all the steps to make the project a success.
Project Notes
The Project Notes template is a simple grid page that allows you to sketch or write out any notes specific to the project.
Project Tracker
Similar to the Project Details page, the Project Tracker template helps you track time and issues related to a specific project. This form was designed to monitor each action item or task associated with a project and the impact it has on the project. (Whether the impact is budget-based or time-based, is all up to you.) As such, the fields relate to time and impact importance and include Item/Action/Completion columns, Notes and Issues, and Dates.
Job Tracker
For people who deal more with particular clients than projects, this sheet helps track time and jobs based on clients. It contains client-project specific information on one form. With fields like Rate, On-site, Expenses, Travel Time and Specifics, this form keeps the details of working with particular clients in one location for ease of billing.
Docket Timesheet
The Docket Timesheet template is a simple 5 column template that
allows you to track time based on task. Each page allows you to track a Docket (or file), Duration, Date, Time and Task to easily keep track of where all your hours go to. Use a separate line to track each task you do on every project to see where you spend most of your time.
Weekly Tracker
The Weekly Tracker template is a very open ended template. Use this form to track weekly hours spend on projects, or track how many hours spent on practicing music. Many of the fields on this template do not have names which allows you to be free to use it to track whatever you want during the week. Each template contains enough space to track 2 weeks worth of information.
Crossroads
The Crossroads template helps in identifying different ways to get to a goal or 'destination'. If you are experiencing trouble deciding on life or project issues and which way to go on them, use this form. Write down the thing that’s on your mind and then create a possible "destination" or an outcome for it. Then using each path, labeled 1-4, try and identify the different ways that the destination can be achieved and each micro-step of that process. Once you’ve finished and reached your goal, use the Looking Back field to record thoughts about what path you've done and how you feel.
Contacts
The Contacts template keeps track of people information. Need to keep a list of all your family and friends? Use this form to track their addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses in one handy spot. There are no alphabet tabs on this form which allows you to separate the names out in any way you want... even by project if you wish.
Contact Log
Need a way to keep track of notes from important phone calls? Use the Contact Log to record important information from meetings or phone calls. There are two parts to this template. The top of the template gives you fields and spaces for your contact’s personal information. The second half of the template allows you to list the topics you discussed and whether or not they require a follow-up to. A second page is also provide to track more details if the first page does not contain enough space.
Equipment
In this day and age it's hard to get by without owning some new sort of electronic gadget or device. Each one comes with its own serial number and make and model and it can be difficult to track all these important numbers. Especially when the stickers wear off or the item's serial is printed on the bottom of it and you cannot easily view it when on the phone with tech support. Enter the Equipment Log. This form will track all the important data for each of your little electronic helpers in one easy place. If you're going on a trip, fill out one of these forms with all the equipment you're toting along, and use the checkboxes as a way of recording whether you've packed it or not.
Job Search
One of the problems with job hunting is keeping track of all the possible jobs, descriptions, deadlines, contacts, requirements, interviews and call logging. This form is meant to help you focus on one job opportunity at a time and keep track of all pertinent information. Also designed to help you zero in on your strengths and weaknesses for the position (and what priority each has for the job), so you may tailor your resume, cover letter or interview responses appropriately.
Sources
This is a handy little form to keep track of people and businesses pertinent to a particular project or subject. Some ideas: a "yellow pages" for types of restaurants; a mailing list; suppliers for a project; mail-order or online stores for your hobbies; invited people for a wedding or party; local computer stores; singing messengers that are willing to dress in gorilla suits.
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