The Day Before
On a family hike

The Day Before

I’ve never been a “figure it out as I go” kind of person. I prefer to control and plan as much as possible. I want to know what I’m getting into. To know what the outline is. And if I don’t have some kind of a plan in place before the time arrives to jump into action, I will probably be panicked.

Okay, I’ll definitely be panicked.

Being self-employed means that I have to create and organize and sometimes even seek out the tasks that will comprise my schedule. It means I’m the one arranging that schedule, creating my own timelines, and managing most of my resources.

There are plenty of folks who hate this kind of time management and prefer to work for someone else so that they don’t have to deal with it as much—and understandably so!

A question I’ve been asked several times is—How do you decide what to do once you have the time and space to work? Does it take you a long time just to get into a mindset that’s ready to work?

It always takes me a bit to get “into the groove”. I might need to go through my email, check the status of pending projects, review my notes, etc. But that “warm up” period is made much easier to navigate if I’ve already decided what I want to do.

Example of my one-week look ahead

For example, if I know that my kids will be with their grandparents on a particular afternoon (as their primary caregiver and homeschool teacher, having the kids under someone else’s supervision is 100% necessary!) then I know I can plan on that time to work.

When both of my kids were really young, it was common for me to feel lost and bewildered when I finally got a few minutes to myself to write. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to write or that I was lacking in ideas. I think my brain simply wasn’t primed. If I made a plan before the moment arrived, however, it made the whole process of “switching gears” became smoother and more fluid.

Again, not everyone gets as detail-obsessed about this as I do, and there’s nothing wrong with you if that’s the case! But if this is a tool that helps you at all (kind of like laying out your clothes for the following day on the evening before) I think using brain power to plan before Go-Time arrives is time very well spent.

Let me know if you like this idea OR let me know if you think I’m crazy. 😉


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