Learning to plan

Hi,

In the process of planning your activities, or projects there are something things that I’ve done that have helped me out quite a bit.  I will share these with you, by way of examples.

I was thinking about developing a software program, something that would take any article I’ve written and create multiple versions of it.  I’d seen all the free stuff out there, some of it OK and others VERY GOOD but I didn’t like the way they were implemented.

So I got to work.

I sketched out exactly how the program should work and how I’d like it to work.  I found that sketching out or thinking on paper helped me to develop the software.  This acted as my blueprint and when I started to code the application, I didn’t need to spend a lot of time thinking about how I would do something since I’d already drawn out what I wanted to do.

Last post we talked about creating your plan. 

So perhaps the plan is for your first information product.  You will need to identify the tasks to complete the project.  These tasks are action steps that are needed to reach that goal — which is to complete your product.  Determine these steps before you proceed and create a brief outline of the project or goal.

A good outline is your road-map to successful accomplishment of the project.

It may help to write the process out on paper.  It may seem to be a useless task, but by sketching it out you could be developing your next product or generating ideas for future blog posts or articles.

As you are identifying the tasks needed to reach your goal, don’t underestimate the amount of time it will take to complete specific tasks.  Remember, the tasks you’ve identified mght be high-level and there may be several other things that need to get done before you can mark that task as having been completed.

Depending on how meticulous you want to be with your day, you could breakdown the day into hourly chunks.  I’ve found it hard to stick to this, so tend to write out my plans at high-levels and then look at the sub-tasks needed to complete the primary task.  For some people, breaking their day down hourly helps — it may for you.

With your plan written out you need to ensure you stay on track so you need to be focused on the task.  That’s why you need to spell out how to complete the task, that’s why you’ve identified the sub-tasks.  This way you are focused on the task, you know in advance what you have to do whether that be research on the internet, or heading to a book store for something.  You will stay more focused since you’ve spelled out what needs to be done.

Something else that may help you at the end of your day, is to spend a few minutes to review what you’ve done and plan for the next day.  You don’t need to spend hours — only 10 or 15 minutes.  Then the next day, when you come to your list you know what needs to be done without wasting any time!

One thing you need to remember that there may very well be distractions throughout the day, you should not beat yourself up if you fall into one of the distractions.  Allocate some time on your plan for these distraction, in the end if you make these provisions you will be more productive and less stressed.

Regards,

Mohamed

About Rob 'n Mo

I'm a man of mystery. I like anonymity, but on the WWW there is not much of it...
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