Time Management

Maker's Weekly Planner

I have a page-a-day journal calendar I use to keep track of what I'm doing, but I find I don't plan effectively because I can't see the whole week at a time. When I read Maker's Schedule, Manager's Schedule I suddenly understood why I have so much trouble with most weekly planners: they all have hourly time slots, and I don't work like that. (Also, I'd need 6am to midnight for an hourly planner.)

I loved LynnR's whimsical style in her Page-A-Day Planner, so I created a time block weekly planner in the same style.

Thumbnail: 
weekly-planner.gif
Usage advice: 

Sized 8.3" by 11", so if you center it'll print well on both Letter and A4. I sliced up the lines in the notes section so it works equally well for paragraphs and to-do lists. :)

7-day columns, Monday and Sunday starts both included. Rows give slots for Early Morning, Morning, Noon, Afternoon, Evening, Dinner, & Late Evening. Rearrange as you like in MS Word, or print straight from PDF.

I've also thrown in my modded version of LynnR's daily planner, in case anyone else likes it. ^^ (I replaced chores with downtime, added an extra hour (11pm-midnight), and sized it down so it fits on Letter paper.)

Paper size: 
Letter and A4
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
Microsoft Word OR Adobe Acrobat / PDF reader
Language: 
English

Franklin Covey compact size two-page monthly revision

Here is the revision for the compact calendar. I tried before, but I do not see it.
You have to fill in the dates yourself. this is designed to give you the maximum white space available.

I took out the little date boxes and made the two columns next to the the holes larger. I used a curved punch to round the corners next to the rings. I used a vellum-type paper, but a little heavier, a very light tan. It came out okay for me. I hope you find an answer to your problem. You might ask Ygor to make one for you.

Depending on what kind of printer you use, you will have to reposition your sheet to print on the other side. I have a hp and put the sheet face up and head first into the paper slot.

Usage advice: 

for someone who wants the maximum white space. 4.25 x 6.75 Cut out around the border line as it is exactly the page size.

Paper size: 
Other
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
Open office writer
Language: 
english

Dynamic Templates v2.05: The Next Generation

The D*I*Y Planner Dynamic Template application has now hit version 2.0, ready to produce any size and shape of yearly, monthly, weekly, and daily calendars for your printing pleasure. All designs are based upon the Classic versions of the D*I*Y Planner, along with input from Doug, and so will integrate completely into your DiyP setup. (The daily design was created by Doug, but was never implemented as a static template owing to the insane amount of repetitive work required.)

Simply select your paper size, choose the calendar type, and tweak the settings to come up with your own printable set of calendars that perfectly fit your planner and your lifestyle.

The Mac version was built in Mac OS 10.4.11, using Qt 4.5.2
Here's a shot of the Mac version as it starts up:

Weekly Organizer 2 pg per week

This is done in Excel. It has a daily column for appointments and then right below the appointment column for a particular day is the Daily Actions. It starts with Monday. The Thumbnail is of the first part of the week. On the right hand (facing) page after the Sunday column is a To Be Done column for weekly projects.

Thumbnail: 
Weekly Organizer 2pg per wk.JPG
Usage advice: 

I need primarily to see a week at a time, and my appointments, meetings, etc., plus stuff I need to get done that day. In the To Be Done column to the right of Sunday, I list what I need to get done for that week. Most of the time, that means significant steps towards completing a project. But I put personal things there also. The small boxes in the Daily Action lines are for me to check off each task I completed. I don't have any place for notes, because I have other places in my DIYPlanner for things like that. I use a 24 hour clock for appointments. The lines above the days are where I put the date, and next to the "Weekly Organizer" at the top I write in the week, like 20 - 27 December 2009. Feel free to change it to suit you.

Paper size: 
Letter
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
MicroSoft Excel
Language: 
English

Long Weekend

Requested Template. Friday - Monday on one page. Classic Size...

Usage advice: 

Whichever way you want to use it!

Paper size: 
Classic (5.5 x 8.5)
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
Microsoft Excel
Language: 
English

A Review of the Pomodoro Technique

My friend, Colin, started using the Pomodoro Technique a month ago. Today he wrote about his experiences (so far) with this timed productivity method.

It has been one month as of today that I started using the Pomodoro Technique at work in an attempt to increase my productivity. I think that after a month of use I can provide an evaluation of the technique; what I find good about it along with some of the negative sides. While I think that using pomodoros has increased my productivity overall, there are still some gaps that I have yet to discover ways of filling.

Go visit his blog to read his lengthy review of how the Pomodoro Technique fits into his life. Perhaps it might inspire you to give it a whirl and boost your productivity?

Introduction to the Middle Way Method

TreeI want to introduce you to The Middle Way Method, an organizational system I created and have been using to keep me and my projects on task. In 2006, I decided to learn how to be more effective with planning. I had tried a few planning systems, and while they all had something I found useful, not fit my lifestyle or personality perfectly. An Internet search about making planner pages brought me to D*I*Y Planner. Here I found I was not alone in needing and creating custom planning systems. D*I*Y Planner also introduced me to a whole slew of planning methodologies.

From studying all these planning systems, I noticed that they fell into two categories: Top Down or Bottom Up. The first is Top Down Planning, and the Franklin Covey methodology provides a great example of this type, which says "Know who you are, and work from there to become who you want to be." The second type is Bottom Up Planning, and Getting Things Done (GTD) system, follows this methodology. GTD is designed to clear all of the "Stuff" in your life, and process it effectively. However, I found that neither of these systems really work best for me. Over time, I kept track of what worked for me from each system, and I used that to create my own system, called The Middle Way Method.

I choose the name, The Middle Way Method, because I was inspired by the story of how the Buddha reached enlightenment. I see this system bridging the gap between Top Down and Bottom Up systems. The Middle Way Method encourages me to uncover who I am, who I want to be, and how to become who I want to be, while being able to handle everything that is thrown my way. In the past, I've had issues where the planning systems break down on me. A crisis or a change, and I need a complete new system. The Middle Way Method helps me to create a new system utilizing this same methodology. This enables me to quickly create a new system for my changed circumstances, because I do not have to work out the method all over again, and I am no longer bouncing between top down or bottom up. I feel that this approach gives a balance between the important things of life and the daily grind.

Procrastination Chart

This is my first post here, I'm a new member but I've been using this website for about a year. I'm a college student and realized there's not too much here geared towards students, or if there is I haven't found it. Anyway, I came across this awesome web page (http://www.sas.calpoly.edu/asc/ssl/procrastination.html) that addresses procrastination, especially for students. Now I am a HUGE procrastinater and this system of writing down and forcing myself to argue against my reasons really seems to help. Let me know what you think. It's just a simple Excel sheet (made for 3x5 card, can be easily altered) so you can tweak it if need be.

Usage advice: 

Write in the project/task you are putting off at the top. In the left column, list your reasons for putting it off (ex: it's too hard, it will take too long, I don't think I know how to do it, etc.) it only works if you're completely honest with yourself. Then on the right, make arguements against your stated reasons (ex: if I break it down it will be easy, I've done this before and it wasn't so bad, I know more than I give myself credit for, etc). Then hopefully you will come to the conclusion that it's best to dive in, wirte it down at the bottom plus any dates/schedules times you want to do it.

Paper size: 
Index Card (3 x 5)
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
Microsoft Excel
Language: 
English

Simple Day Planner

A really basic day planner.

Usage advice: 

For simple planning.

Paper size: 
Letter and A4
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
Adobe pdf
Language: 
English