One of the ways I stay organised and plan ahead around my business commitments, goals and events together with organising a busy family is to have a big wall planner with a whole year calendar on the office wall. I use mine to keep track of the big things – school holidays, gymnastic competitions, guide camps and dance shows along with business events such as networking meetings, client deadlines, conferences and workshops. And of course, my holidays.
Having the whole year available at a glance helps me to visualise how busy upcoming months are going to be, planning around public holidays and how long before the next school holidays. It is also a helpful tool in letting everyone in the family see how busy we all are.
My tips for using a wall planner:
- Hang it where you can easily see it and reach it to write on. Consider where you spend most of your planning/working/thinking time and have it close by.
- Colour code your entries – eg green for family, blue for business. For me I narrow it down even further - each family member has a different colour, as do different business activities. By the end of the year it is very colourful.
- Add items to your wall planner as soon as you become aware of them, leaving them to memory to add later takes up too much mental space and of course you could forget altogether.
- I also add to my Google calendar online so I have access anytime, anywhere to what’s coming up and can check what days are available when out and about. But it’s pretty difficult to see more than one month at a time on a phone or computer screen.
- Add stickers or your own doodle art to truly personalise your wall planner.
- Cross out the days as they go – you can really see how far you’ve come.
- Make sure family members or staff know whether they can add things to the calendar or notify you first to save confusion and misunderstanding over what the event is.
In past years I’ve gone down to my local office products / stationery store and just grabbed whatever they had. And then spent the year thinking about how ugly it is. Not this year – I’ve got even more organized and created my own wall planner in three different designs. Even better, you can download a free printable pdf of my wall planner to use in your own home or office. Now nobody has to have a boring, ugly wall planner. Check them out here.