A picture perfect day for preaching what I often forget to practice. A cloudless Sunday afternoon, facing the blazing sun fully outstretched in my lounging chair, reclined of course. Doing what I love to do most - writing. So allow me to pontificate. After all it IS Sunday. The morning wasn't quite this serene. A tail-wagging-the-dog kinda week and the prospect of office clean up wasn't exactly relished. But it was necessary. Hoover in hand, and a bucket of hot soapy water at bay, Molly Maid was never this good.
First though, dig through the carpet of cellulose to rediscover what I recalled as a desk. Photocopies, faxes, printouts, stick-ups stuck to stick-ups and a small plate that at some point in the week contained a sandwich of some description. Finally, a floppy disc of some program I thought I was so hot on trying.
Now before you start to scroll down to the next article assuming this is a "cleanliness next to Godliness" sermon, just hang in because this experience proved one more time that I am a creature of bad habit. And you know what? You could be too.
It is most difficult for the Virgo in me to admit this, but I am prone to falling into poor work habits. I had wondered why this week seemed like leap-frogging from one task to another. Contained in all of that paper wreckage were great marketing ideas, phone numbers of people I never called, notes of things I needed to discuss with my partner, various on-the-fly jobs that should have been taken care of, articles I should have read and a couple of unanswered faxes. So much that should have been taken care of, but wasn't. And, at the very bottom of the collage sat the very subject of this article. My task list from two weeks ago. Single pen strokes proudly dissecting each completed job. That period of time I instantly recall as running very smoothly!
The ultimate irony here is that I had a bare whiteboard hovering right in front of my nose the entire time. Burned out many a marker on that shiny surface. The greatest productivity tool known to mankind just staring blankly back at me throughout this week from hell.
Ok, enough is enough! A self-scolding and a personal pact that I will 'write' this wrong. I will not only build my weekly task list right now, but I will again pick up various colored erasable pens and put it in clear and constant view. Double-space each entry so fill-in jobs can be easily added. Start with a review of my masterplan (which I always keep handy, believe it or not:-), add what needs to get done this week, incorporate the "lost" tasks I just collected, and write away. Prioritize it first on paper and re-christen my forgotten friend on the wall.
Finished! A completely filled blueprint of what will be a much better organized and smoother next week!
I cannot emphasize just how important the job of listing jobs is. I love my computer and have a great program for this very function. But somehow that doesn't work for me. Many of my associates carry dayplanners (I have 2) but they don't work for me either. The whiteboard always has and I love to manually write, so whatever works. Point is, the physical writing down of a task, a plan or a goal is what makes it official. Anything less is pure fantasy.
So I added the task of writing my tasks at the top of my whiteboard, never to be erased. Too easy to forget in the heat of battle my friends. But such a weapon for winning the war!
My office is now sparkling clean and I reward myself with some freshly made iced tea with a twist and head out into the backyard with pad, pen and Beagle pup to write my creed and what amounts to a confession.
After all, it IS Sunday.
This article was posted at iReprint.info on 2004-01-04. Webmasters and publishers are free to reprint this article as long as the resource box and all the links remain intact.
About the Author Written by Rick Beneteau. (c)1998 NetProfit 2020 Inc., Marietta, GA. Rick is a partner in the Internet Marketing firm NetProfit 2020 Inc. Their newest product, I.D. IT! Plates (URL/EMAIL plates for your car),at http://www.netprofit2020.com/IDIT.htm is taking the Net by storm. Rick also provides copywriting and complete advertising services including corporate music production via his TrademarkeT company at: http://www.thehallway.com/ECOMMTR.htm . Rick is a for-hire freelance writer and you can contact Rick at firstname.lastname@example.org.