Wednesday, June 22, 2011

5 Steps to Planning Everything, Book Review, 2-a-days

Awww thanks you guys!! I'm even more excited about my trip now (and about the tomatoes that should be ready by the end of the week!). So part of my work in that leadership program involved identifying a strength and then sharing it with other people (we have an internal facebook so to speak). In thinking about my strengths, I felt that I could help someone when it comes to planning. Yes, a broad term. But, as many of you regular readers may know, I feel like it's how I approach all things whether it be walking/running 1,000 miles a year or eating. LOL

one of my mantras - doesn't apply to everyone but definitely applies to me! Without a plan I'm kind of a kid in a candy shop

I can safely say that these are the 5 steps I go through when planning programs at work, parties for friends and the list goes on (to include errand day, lake trips, my work week, you name it).

Step 1: What, overall, do you hope to accomplish? Write it down.

Step 2: From there, identify every. single. thing. that must be done to accomplish that goal, down to the nitty gritty. Don’t forget about who needs to be involved in each of these things, and how much money you have to spend on this goal is important to note as well!

Step 3: Once you have all ‘to-dos’ down, put them in chronological order. What has to happen first? What items can be grouped together to increase efficiency? (some prefer one post-it per to-do then moving them around; I however type everything and copy/paste)

Step 4: Timing is everything. Begin with the end in mind – what date do you want to finish? Now, back up from that date and assign dates to all of those To-Dos. Is your timeline realistic? If not, change the scale of the project (i.e., remove to-dos) or back the ‘end date’ out to accommodate your schedule.

Step 5: Stay on track, hold yourself accountable, and don’t miss deadlines. When you miss one deadline, it can result in you missing the other 25 to-do’s deadlines = not good.

No, I don’t think this is rocket surgery (love that mixed metaphor) but I DO think this is how my brain works… seriously, I can’t even plan a birthday party without following this process, breaking it all down and building it back up, to ensure everything I want to do gets done on time, and on budget. Is there more to it than this? Sure – but overall these 5 steps get and keep me on track.

Q: What’s your number 1 planning tip?

Q: What's one strength you have? What's a tip or How-To you regularly share with your readers, or plan to?

And back to normal programming! In true Tuesday form, I did a Two-a-day! I got up early and did 30 minutes of spinning, followed by a 1/4-mile walk and a 1-mile run. Then I worked before heading to the gym with Stacy during lunch for a 3-mile walk and abs. Great day! Then I just worked more before heading home to the family where two new pieces of furniture had been delivered! Pics to come tomorrow - can't wait to post! (well clearly I can but you know what I mean! haha) I also finished up an audio book, Joanna Philbin's The Daughters. I suppose I just wasn't the target audience for this. I mean I knew it was young adult, and it sounded cute, but it was just very high school. Shocked the library had the audio book as kids this age wouldn't listen to an audio book. Anyway, the book was about three girls living in Manhattan who all had famous parents. The girls each had their "struggles" (my dad is too busy for me; my mom is a supermodel and i'm not pretty; my mom is a pop star and she's trying to make my music pop). I guess I just couldn't relate, but I also didn't enjoy it or the characters enough to suspend reality and empathize. So it was kind of a wash for me. While I think it would be a great book for middle-schoolers (no drinking, cursing, etc.) I just needed something more to stay focused. Oh- and at the end something really interesting happened, but it ended. Turned out they were setting up a series. grrrr. I give it a 2/5.

K - off to enjoy Wednesday. Hope you're having a good day so far!!

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