I am a list maker and a lover of routine. My life is one of those filled with crinkled notebooks, to do lists for everything, excel spreadsheets for any given event or occasion. I love a list. When it came to lockdown, and my routine and to-do list being thrown out of the window, it took me a couple of weeks to get my mojo back and find a new way to plan my day, stay accountable for the tasks that needed to happen and stay motivated!
My first attempt was a very loose general ‘To Do’ list which quickly became the ‘Should Have Done But What’s The Point?’ list. In an effort to regain control, I tried a more strict approach and planned my day to the minute, assigning chunks of time to each necessary activity. Think Hugh Grant’s character in About A Boy. This was, in hindsight, clearly a stupid thing to do. It was much too restrictive during a time where everything was more up in the air.
Eventually, I settled on splitting my day into four sections of four hours – essentially a pre-work period, the morning and afternoon of a working day, and a post work period. Each day I set myself the necessary tasks of those sections and try and complete them within the four hours. I’ve found this works really well to keep me on track and not just watching Netflix all day and rushing around at night, and also gives you a sense of achievement at the end of the day when you can tick off all the things you’ve achieved.
You might be someone whose life has become so busy and stressful during lockdown that you can’t imagine needing to plan your day as it’s all dictated for you, and if this is you, you are an incredibly human being. However, if you are someone who likes to plan – maybe it’s for your kids home-school schedule, or you’re working on a project or blog, or just struggling to keep on top of what you used to consider ‘normal’ tasks – I have spent a very calming couple of hours creating a very green and zen version of my day to day planner that you can download for *free* below.
Hopefully this inspires you, like it did me, to stay as calm and focused as you reasonably can at the moment! Let me know if you end up using the planner, and I hope it does the trick. We can still achieve lots, even under current circumstances which even all these weeks on we are still getting used to.
Stay safe x