Tag Archive | to do list

Mastering the To Do List by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

Is your To Do list cluttered or covered in dust?  Maybe your To Do list is a mess of subconscious worries prone to resurfacing at the most inconvenient times.  A To Do list is a work-at-home mom essential.  Here are a few tips to help you manage the job that never ends:

Write it down.  Give your brain a break by writing everything down.  When you are juggling a career and family your mind is bound to be distracted at various times throughout the day.  Once you have noted an action that needs your attention, your mind will be free to return to the task at hand.Path

Keep it all in one place.  Whether you prefer a notepad, daily planner, or PDA, be consistent with where you keep your To Do items.  A note in your purse, another on the back of your hand and a third hanging on the refrigerator only adds confusion to an already hectic day.

Use single action items.  Your To Do list should consist of specific action items, not projects or goals.  These are the steps you take to complete a project, or accomplish your goals.  When you finish a task, cross it off.  When you work at home your boss isn’t there to pat you on the back, so you may find it gratifying to assess what you have accomplished at the end of the day.

Be specific, the more details the better.  If you include all the information you need to complete the task at hand, you will be able to finish it with ease.  This is especially helpful when squeezing things in throughout the day.  A quick phone call while you are in the waiting room of your doctor’s office becomes simple when the phone number is at your finger tips.

Estimate the time you need.  Be realistic with yourself about how long it actually takes to get things done.  If you block off a half an hour to run 30 errands, you’re not likely to stay on schedule.  Your schedule is there to help you plan out your day.  Overextending yourself will only leave you feeling stressed out and let down.

Categorize your list.  Breaking your list into categories will help you become more efficient.  Use a page in your planner or notebook for errands, another for phone calls, and a third for emails.  If you are in the car, flip to the errand page and check off anything on the way to or from your destination.  You can save loads of time by accomplishing similar items while you have the resources readily available.

Set priorities.  Use priorities to keep from falling behind.  Make sure you accomplish the items at the top of your priority list, but don’t be afraid to group those items with less urgent tasks that can be done at the same time.  The goal here is efficiency. 

Reassess regularly.  One phone call can change your priorities in an instant.  Review your priorities and change them as necessary.  If your To Do list isn’t quite working for you, switch it up a bit.  A few minutes invested now can add up to hours of time saved in the long run.

www.sandrabeck.com
www.motherhoodincorporated.com

Mastering the To Do List by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

 by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

 

Is your To Do list cluttered or covered in dust?  Maybe your To Do list is a mess of subconscious worries prone to resurfacing at the most inconvenient times.  A To Do list is a work-at-home mom essential.  Here are a few tips to help you manage the job that never ends:

 

Write it down.  Give your brain a break by writing everything down.  When you are juggling a career and family your mind is bound to be distracted at various times throughout the day.  Once you have noted an action that needs your attention, your mind will be free to return to the task at hand.path1

 

Keep it all in one place.  Whether you prefer a notepad, daily planner, or PDA, be consistent with where you keep your To Do items.  A note in your purse, another on the back of your hand and a third hanging on the refrigerator only adds confusion to an already hectic day.

 

Use single action items.  Your To Do list should consist of specific action items, not projects or goals.  These are the steps you take to complete a project, or accomplish your goals.  When you finish a task, cross it off.  When you work at home your boss isn’t there to pat you on the back, so you may find it gratifying to assess what you have accomplished at the end of the day.

 

Be specific, the more details the better.  If you include all the information you need to complete the task at hand, you will be able to finish it with ease.  This is especially helpful when squeezing things in throughout the day.  A quick phone call while you are in the waiting room of your doctor’s office becomes simple when the phone number is at your finger tips.

 

Estimate the time you need.  Be realistic with yourself about how long it actually takes to get things done.  If you block off a half an hour to run 30 errands, you’re not likely to stay on schedule.  Your schedule is there to help you plan out your day.  Overextending yourself will only leave you feeling stressed out and let down.

 

Categorize your list.  Breaking your list into categories will help you become more efficient.  Use a page in your planner or notebook for errands, another for phone calls, and a third for emails.  If you are in the car, flip to the errand page and check off anything on the way to or from your destination.  You can save loads of time by accomplishing similar items while you have the resources readily available.

 

Set priorities.  Use priorities to keep from falling behind.  Make sure you accomplish the items at the top of your priority list, but don’t be afraid to group those items with less urgent tasks that can be done at the same time.  The goal here is efficiency. 

 

Reassess regularly.  One phone call can change your priorities in an instant.  Review your priorities and change them as necessary.  If your To Do list isn’t quite working for you, switch it up a bit.  A few minutes invested now can add up to hours of time saved in the long run.

 

www.sandrabeck.com

www.motherhoodincorporated.com

 

End the Clutter Crisis Today by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

 Today’s clutter, as unassuming as it may seem, is tomorrow’s crisis waiting to happen.  Be it a misplaced phone number, unpaid bill, or botched assignment, there is little worse than a headache that could have been prevented.  Follow these tips, and you’ll be well on your way to a clutter-free workspace. Rose

 Schedule It

 Set aside time each day to take care of paperwork, such as opening incoming mail, refiling documents, and shredding items that contain personal information.  These tasks quickly fall through the cracks of a busy day, and leave behind telltale piles of paper throughout your home office.

 Take Action

 Taking immediate action on open items will prevent paper, and stress, from piling up on you.  If you are unable to complete a task immediately, record it in your To Do list along with a due date.  Create a Pending file for items that require further action.  Note any actions you have taken in the file, then schedule some time in the future to follow up.

 Go Paperless

 Store anything possible on your computer.  A scanner is handy for filing documents electronically.  Organizing data files into folders makes it easy to retrieve what you need, when you need it.  Gone are the days of the sticky note.  A PDA is a handy way to jot down any important information, not to mention schedule appointments, track your expenses, and store your To Do list.  Be sure to back up your PDA and your computer regularly.

 Start Small

 Set small, reasonable goals, then schedule a few minutes a day to achieve them.  Try cleaning out one file drawer at a time, or clear out your inbox.  If it’s not useful, throw it out.  If you feel uncertain about tossing something, store it in a box and label it to be thrown out at a later date.  If you still haven’t used the item by the date on the box, it’s not likely you will need it again.  Taking small incremental steps will keep things moving in the right direction, off of your desk and out of the way. 

 

www.sandrabeck.com

www.motherhoodincorporated.com

End the Clutter Crisis Today by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

By Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

 

Today’s clutter, as unassuming as it may seem, is tomorrow’s crisis waiting to happen.  Be it a misplaced phone number, unpaid bill, or botched assignment, there is little worse than a headache that could have been prevented.  Follow these tips, and you’ll be well on your way to a clutter-free workspace.  planning-ahead

 

Schedule It

 

Set aside time each day to take care of paperwork, such as opening incoming mail, refiling documents, and shredding items that contain personal information.  These tasks quickly fall through the cracks of a busy day, and leave behind telltale piles of paper throughout your home office.

 

Take Action

 

Taking immediate action on open items will prevent paper, and stress, from piling up on you.  If you are unable to complete a task immediately, record it in your To Do list along with a due date.  Create a Pending file for items that require further action.  Note any actions you have taken in the file, then schedule some time in the future to follow up.

 

Go Paperless

 

Store anything possible on your computer.  A scanner is handy for filing documents electronically.  Organizing data files into folders makes it easy to retrieve what you need, when you need it.  Gone are the days of the sticky note.  A PDA is a handy way to jot down any important information, not to mention schedule appointments, track your expenses, and store your To Do list.  Be sure to back up your PDA and your computer regularly.

 

Start Small

 

Set small, reasonable goals, then schedule a few minutes a day to achieve them.  Try cleaning out one file drawer at a time, or clear out your inbox.  If it’s not useful, throw it out.  If you feel uncertain about tossing something, store it in a box and label it to be thrown out at a later date.  If you still haven’t used the item by the date on the box, it’s not likely you will need it again.  Taking small incremental steps will keep things moving in the right direction, off of your desk and out of the way. 

 

www.sandrabeck.com

www.motherhoodincorporated.com

 

Mastering the To Do List by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

By Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

  Is your To Do list cluttered or covered in dust?  Maybe your To Do list is a mess of subconscious worries prone to resurfacing at the most inconvenient times.  A To Do list is a work-at-home mom essential.  Here are a few tips to help you manage the job that never ends:flowers2

Write it down.  Give your brain a break by writing everything down.  When you are juggling a career and family your mind is bound to be distracted at various times throughout the day.  Once you have noted an action that needs your attention, your mind will be free to return to the task at hand.

Keep it all in one place.  Whether you prefer a notepad, daily planner, or PDA, be consistent with where you keep your To Do items.  A note in your purse, another on the back of your hand and a third hanging on the refrigerator only adds confusion to an already hectic day.

Use single action items.  Your To Do list should consist of specific action items, not projects or goals.  These are the steps you take to complete a project, or accomplish your goals.  When you finish a task, cross it off.  When you work at home your boss isn’t there to pat you on the back, so you may find it gratifying to assess what you have accomplished at the end of the day.

Be specific, the more details the better.  If you include all the information you need to complete the task at hand, you will be able to finish it with ease.  This is especially helpful when squeezing things in throughout the day.  A quick phone call while you are in the waiting room of your doctor’s office becomes simple when the phone number is at your finger tips.

Estimate the time you need.  Be realistic with yourself about how long it actually takes to get things done.  If you block off a half an hour to run 30 errands, you’re not likely to stay on schedule.  Your schedule is there to help you plan out your day.  Overextending yourself will only leave you feeling stressed out and let down.

Categorize your list.  Breaking your list into categories will help you become more efficient.  Use a page in your planner or notebook for errands, another for phone calls, and a third for emails.  If you are in the car, flip to the errand page and check off anything on the way to or from your destination.  You can save loads of time by accomplishing similar items while you have the resources readily available.

Set priorities.  Use priorities to keep from falling behind.  Make sure you accomplish the items at the top of your priority list, but don’t be afraid to group those items with less urgent tasks that can be done at the same time.  The goal here is efficiency. 

Reassess regularly.  One phone call can change your priorities in an instant.  Review your priorities and change them as necessary.  If your To Do list isn’t quite working for you, switch it up a bit.  A few minutes invested now can add up to hours of time saved in the long run.

www.sandrabeck.com
www.motherhoodincorporated.com

End the Clutter Crisis Today by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

By Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

 Today’s clutter, as unassuming as it may seem, is tomorrow’s crisis waiting to happen.  Be it a misplaced phone number, unpaid bill, or botched assignment, there is little worse than a headache that could have been prevented.  Follow these tips, and you’ll be well on your way to a clutter-free workspace.  The big picture

Schedule It

Set aside time each day to take care of paperwork, such as opening incoming mail, refiling documents, and shredding items that contain personal information.  These tasks quickly fall through the cracks of a busy day, and leave behind telltale piles of paper throughout your home office.

Take Action

Taking immediate action on open items will prevent paper, and stress, from piling up on you.  If you are unable to complete a task immediately, record it in your To Do list along with a due date.  Create a Pending file for items that require further action.  Note any actions you have taken in the file, then schedule some time in the future to follow up.

Go Paperless

Store anything possible on your computer.  A scanner is handy for filing documents electronically.  Organizing data files into folders makes it easy to retrieve what you need, when you need it.  Gone are the days of the sticky note.  A PDA is a handy way to jot down any important information, not to mention schedule appointments, track your expenses, and store your To Do list.  Be sure to back up your PDA and your computer regularly.

Start Small

Set small, reasonable goals, then schedule a few minutes a day to achieve them.  Try cleaning out one file drawer at a time, or clear out your inbox.  If it’s not useful, throw it out.  If you feel uncertain about tossing something, store it in a box and label it to be thrown out at a later date.  If you still haven’t used the item by the date on the box, it’s not likely you will need it again.  Taking small incremental steps will keep things moving in the right direction, off of your desk and out of the way. 

www.sandrabeck.com
www.motherhoodincorporated.com

5 Tips To Work-Home Transition Success by Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

By Sandra Beck, Motherhood Incorporated

 Last weekend I spent some time visiting with family.  My sister’s ten-acre lot has become something of an oasis these days.  The rural atmosphere is a delight for this suburban native, and a much needed source of rest.  As I cuddled with my toddler, tired from our hour-long afternoon hike, I remembered a time when my unwillingness to leave work in the office overshadowed our time together.  When you work at home, like I do, it can be all too easy to slip into an assignment during off hours.flowers1

As I became acclimated to the work-at-home lifestyle, I picked up a few easy techniques to help bring my mind back to the things that matter most at the end of the day.  Here are a few ideas for making the transition from work to home a successful one:

Set a work schedule and stick to it.  When you plan to work a set number of hours, it is easier to prioritize your time.  Once you have a plan in place, be diligent about staying within those boundaries.

Transition by spending time doing something you love.  Set aside some time to journal, blog, read a book, or partake in another hobby after you finish working for the day.  Time spent doing something you enjoy will help get your mind off of the job and ready for a restful evening.

Keep your To Do list accessible.  If a work-related thought begins gnawing at your brain, write it down and leave it for business hours.  You’ll have the reminder you need to get the job done at the appropriate time.

Resolve to power down. Shut down your computer, cell phone and other work-related technology at the end of the day.  Once it’s off, leave it that way!

When all else fails, get out of town.  A weekend getaway or an afternoon with family or friends is a wonderful way to smooth the rough edges left behind by a stressful work week.  You needn’t spend a lot of money to get away, sometimes a family trip to a local park is all that is needed to melt the stress away.

www.sandrabeck.com
www.motherhoodincorporated.com