Before writing your schedule, you've got to download the running list you've been keeping in your head!
You know the one.
All the projects you've been meaning to do. Those receipts that have been sitting on the counter. Your purse that desperately needs to be emptied. The laundry that needs to be done. The vet appointments that need to be made. The subscription service you meant to cancel two years ago. The dentist bill that's 3 months overdue. Oh yeah, those things. This part may shock you. You'll have things pouring out of your brain that you didn't fully realize were in there! I know I did.
The very first time I did this last summer, my list was LONG. Like, 50 items long. And to think I had been storing alllllll of those to-do's in my brain, trying to not forget them, manage them and yet, not do much about them. No wonder I felt tired! My next thought was, omg, how am I going to keep this up? This is A LOT to do every week.
Let me alleviate some concerns for you! Your first list will always be your longest list and your first schedule will always be the hardest to write! It's why so many of us quit. We think we'll have to keep climbing Mount Everest every week. You won't! Promise. In fact! It's kind of like you scale Mount Everest on your first list/schedule and when you're done with the first one, you're already at the top of the mountain. It's allllll downhill (in a good way!) from that point.
After you've emptied everything out of your brain, ask yourself: what else? Keep asking until you think you've got it all.
The next step after this is to go take a walk if you're tired! But seriously. If you're feeling mentally fried, give yourself a break. The scheduling part does require a decent amount of focus and concentration. I think my first schedule took me two hours to write. Not saying it'll take that long for you, but it could! 1st one is Everest, remember? You can do hard things. Now it takes me less than 30 minutes to write everything down AND schedule it. It gets significantly easier.
Ok after your break, you'll want to make another list. I suggest spreading out everything you wrote as a to-do over 3-4 weeks, depending on how many things there are on your list.
If you're like me you'll dive all the way in and schedule a 15 hour day for yourself and burn yourself out in a week. Sustainability is the goal!
Schedule the urgent and time-sensitive things accordingly, pop in the rest as you see fit.
Depending on what you included on your list and how much focus-energy you have left, you may want to consider adding things like, reading, workouts, when you'll eat, time for thought work, cleaning tasks, laundry, etc. Again. OPTIONAL!
But how long will things take!? In general, as long as you give them. Just use your best estimate to start, you're going to learn as you go!
Can I use a paper calendar? I did at first (last summer) but I switched to Google Calendar this past February and haven't looked back.
Another note: there is no one "right" way to follow a schedule. If it works for you, you're getting everything done that you want done, congratulations! You're doing it JUST right.
Are you ready to do more in less time? I can help! The first step is hopping on a call.