How has it been a week since I last blogged?!
The problem I’m facing–as I’m sure a bunch of you are as well–is I can go days without caring about anything because post-Trumpian, pandemic reality is awful, and I’m ready for a new timeline. It’s not gonna happen, but a writer who lives in a fantasy world can dream on paper, in her head, and every other moment, right?
That got away from me.
When I was still teaching in the college classroom, I prided myself on my time management and organizational skills. My calendar was damn near perfect. I knew where I needed to be and when, and if I didn’t, I knew where to look. My grading spreadsheets (that I made) were color coded to my paper folders. I had a notebook with a note-taking system that helped me track everything. I had my shit together.
Then I quit teaching, started my own business, and time no longer made sense. I’ve struggled for almost ten months get organized. I have (literally) six notebooks on my desk, all partially used. I’m using too many apps to get it together, and I’m not sure I understand colors let alone color coding anymore.
I guess what I’m saying is major life changes can throw everything into a river, you included, and leave you to save yourself. But that urgency can help. Throughout January, I hit a low point in the pandemic, and I knew I had to start finding what was actually working. Each week, I experimented with the tools I have, got rid of what didn’t, and I think I’m starting to find my groove. Maybe these tools can help you through this darkness.
- One notebook for professional notes: I use Em and Friends spiral notebooks THAT THEY DON’T HAVE ANYMORE WHAT AM I GOING TO DO
- One notebook for personal journaling, which includes menstrual cycle tracking, gratitude lists, self-compassion therapy homework, daily accomplishments, and sleep tracking
- An online calendar tied to an app: I use Google Calendar, have it pinned in my browser, and have a widget on the home screen of my phone
- A project management tool and app: I’m using Trello, and things are starting to come together!
- A time tracking app: I only use this for business purposes, but I use toggl and have it pinned in my browser
- Sticky notes . . . there are never enough sticky notes
- Many, many TUL medium ink black gel pens, and if I were single, buying these as a gift for me would be a great way to get me to sleep with you because I am a pen whore
- Good cloud storage: I rely heavily on Dropbox, but Google Drive is my backup.
- A trusty browser with tab pinning options like Chrome
- A place to nap, which is anywhere the older I get
Of course, as needs change, adapting is key, but when I have these tools at the ready, I feel more organized and adulty. Have you tried any of these? What are your favorites besides anything here? What are your best tips for keeping time and stuff from throwing you in a river? Tell me in the comments!