Everyone who has succeeded as an entrepreneur has one thing in common: They plan. Somewhere along the entrepreneurial journey there’s a point at which we make the conscious decision to plan and achieve our goals or we unwittingly decide that we’ve embarked on yet another failed project-no two ways about it. Planning just makes sense. You’ll find that those who plan achieve far more than those who don’t, as planning is a sign of true leadership abilities.
Planning doesn’t have to be a daunting task. In fact it can be quite fulfilling when approached from a place of self care and professional growth. I started planning because I found comfort in working from lists. Checking things off as I’ve accomplished them makes me feel productive and that I’m moving forward instead of standing still. It’s important to develop your own personal style of planning but if you need examples, there are plenty of them on Instagram or Youtube.
The most popular styles of planning are the traditional “month-at-a-glance” and bullet journaling. As I have an affinity for both and my readers stress how indecisive they can be at choosing one or the other, I thought I’d show you how I incorporate bullet-journaling into my everyday planning style. Like many women, I use the Erin Condren planner. I don’t endorse one planner over any other, EC just works for me. Bullet-journaling, by contrast, offers some unique opportunities for planners:
- Handwriting practice
- Doodling as therapy
- Prioritizing tasks
I plan weekly. I keep a digital calendar for logging meetings, workouts, family schedule, etc., but I prefer a paper planner for mapping out projects, research and other long-form tasks. Once I put my tasks into my weekly planner, I use the following bullet-journaling techniques for ensuring tasks are handled appropriately.
- Key: I place a “key” in my monthly goal section of my planner to mark off priorities. Each symbol can be used to quickly categorize tasks.
- Arrow: arrows symbolize migrated tasks
- X: an “x” symbolizes completed tasks
- Hollow black circle: symbolizes an event/appt
- Filled in circle: symbolizes research needed
- A red star: symbolizes urgent/priority; ususally used for my “top 3” daily priorities
Bullet-journaling incorporated into your personal style of planning helps you stay focused on the task at hand without being an enormous time suck. Once you have a system, developed from your own style, planning will be seamless and eventually you’ll be achieving like a boss!