Schedule Your Day with Intention
Scheduling your day in advance has two benefits: maximizing your time and taking some pressure off of your shoulders. Here’s how:
Start with a list
Before you start scheduling, list out everything you want or need to get done that day. When we say everything, we mean everything! Your list should include meals, rest periods, exercise/movement and self-care activities.
Schedule your non-negotiables
Start by scheduling your needs before you schedule your wants. For example: you need to eat, so schedule in your meal times. If you have any meetings or appointments, plug those in first so that you can schedule other items around them.
Consider when you’re at your most productive
Are you most productive in the morning? Does putting off difficult tasks for the end of the day increase your anxiety? Schedule difficult tasks earlier in the day to save yourself some stress and tackle your hardest challenges head-on.
Don’t skip reward time
Science tells us that we’re at our best when we’re working in sprints, not marathons. Schedule breaks and rewards for yourself while you’re working on a major task, like 20 minutes of your favorite TV show or a short walk around the block. Getting away from your assignment can help you return with a clearer head and more motivation.
Expect the unexpected -- and plan for it!
Once you’ve scheduled your proactive time (your non-negotiables, tasks and rewards), schedule in some reactive time: time set aside for interruptions that you can’t predict, like a phone call from a friend or an impromptu meeting. Giving your schedule some flexibility helps you feel less overwhelmed when unplanned interruptions happen throughout the day.