HOW TO GET ORGANISED AND SMASH 2018
I feel like 2017 was a real learning curve for me and this blog. There was a lot of learning and a lot more wingin' it along the way. But with all of that came a hell of a lot of insight into how I'd like to do things differently this year. You lot know I love a plan. I love a list. I love ticking things off, especially whenever I feel like my brain is a big ol’ jumble of to-dos.
Do you ever feel like you have too many tabs open in your head? Like you were just doing one thing, caught sight of an email popping up, ended up there, then clicked through to the ASOS sale and somehow now you are not quite sure what you were doing...?! Well hey, that's the story of my life. In order to nip that cycle in the bud, I've learnt to structure my life a little better to make for much more efficient working.
THE BIGGER PICTURE
There’s something that’s both equally terrifying and tremendously optimistic when it comes to setting goals for the year ahead. Being the plan-obsessed, control freak that I am, I bloody love it and practically pant with excitement at the thought of New Years resolutions, so I’m never one to pass up an opportunity to pinpoint some areas to tackle in the year ahead.
It's always a good idea to have a sit down and think about where you'd like to be personally, financially and career-wise when the 31st December rolls around. Set some realistic goals and then I'd suggest you jot them down and either pin them up somewhere you can see them daily, or pop ’em on a page in your notepad that you turn past frequently. That way you can’t get away from them and they’re easy to find when it comes to planning your month ahead…
Joe and I recently spent an evening brainstorming and setting goals for the year ahead and it was the most motivating thing ever. If you can rope in a boyfriend / parent / friend to bounce ideas off of, it's a real help and can be great fun!
MONTH TO MONTH
I tend to plan in a way that’s more focused on week-to-week, but when the first of the month rolls around it’s nice to be able to look at your calendar in a snapshot and see what the next four weeks are shaping up like. After being a slave to my paper diary for so long, I’m now the biggest lover of Google Calendar - mostly because of the fun pictures... but as well as that, it means you can easily make changes, updates and add extra information so much easily than trying to find that tip-ex. Noting down key events of each month - e.g. Valentines Day - will also help to trigger content ideas, brand collabs etc.
WEEK TO WEEK
I used to plan daily; writing these lists that were as long as one full-page, detailing every single, little thing that I had to get done each day, with tasks broken down into 15 different steps and a shedload of other bits and bobs to tick off. It meant that I spent a large proportion of the day trying to produce neat, little ticks but also y'know, spending far too long actually writing the god-damn list. Generally, my day looked overwhelming from the get go, and if I didn’t complete my to-do list it looked as though I still had another 26 different things to do before I’d actually get to the end of it. And when you look down at that, after already working for 10 hours or so, it's not particularly motivating. And we all know that motivation is key!
However, I think I've found a system that could work for me over the next year. In the world of blogging, and many other creative careers, you're forever learning on the job and there's constant personal development to be done. Juggling a multitude of different platforms which all require different tools and techniques, can become very overwhelming, very quickly. So instead of trying to tackle everything at once, I've decided to stick to a 'one main focus' per week and in short, just be more realistic about what I can get done.
DAY TO DAY
After almost 6 months of being self-employed, I've sussed out when I'm most productive and use those times to my advantage. I’ll try and write blog posts during times of the day when I’m least likely to be disturbed and do shorter, more errand-based tasks when my flatmates are around or when I know the postman is likely to knock at the door - mostly always, mid shower. I also find that keeping my phone on silent and if possible, turned facing down helps minimise distractions and I keep my mail app closed on my laptop to halt the constant pings.
I am so ridiculously excited about 2018 and what opportunities it has in store!!! LET'S SMASH IT!