Coach of The Week – Juli Shulem

Weekly THEMED Time Management

THEMED planning is simple. It takes the concept of list making to a different level!

How many of you find that your ‘to do’ list has become a royal pain in the neck?  Some days I just didn’t want to make a list because I didn’t want to do those things on it. Ah ha! I said it! It can become so daunting, right? What I found I needed to do was see the big picture through the minutia.

If you run your life by starting a myriad of projects and rarely complete any, then you are creating more problems than you are solving in your life and that’s just stupid. My THEMED Time Management concept helps eradicate this problem.

Here is what I do:

First, establish what you know needs to be accomplished over the course of the upcoming week. This requires you to think more along the lines of the big picture, versus the details. I find that when thinking in terms of ‘themes’ rather than tasks on a weekly basis, it is far more productive and considerably less stressful.

I look at my list of major projects and based on logic, and pending deadlines, I choose which project or ‘theme’ of work to tackle first. For example last week, my website was in progress and my role of writing content was holding up the works, that had to be done first. So that became that week’s THEME.

Here’s how I did this:

I blocked out all available time (that which wasn’t consumed with client hours or personal responsibilities) and put my entire focus on that one thing: creating website content. I scheduled appointments with my developer and got clear on exactly what I wanted to happen and also decided that I wanted to get it all done by week’s end. So – there was week #1: Website content writing. Nothing new could be put in its place. I committed to getting this done.

Assuming I would get the bulk of it done in week #1, I could plan the following week.  I decided I would work on writing book #5, which was bubbling beneath the surface of my mind. So, I blocked several large chunks of time and planned to tackle that project the following week. Good! Now that was decided so I could give my full concentration to this week’s them of website content writing.

Now, be careful that everything else you may need to do doesn’t get tossed to the wind, and end up creating a future problem by being ignored. Just because I am focusing on one specific project for the week, doesn’t mean that I am not going to do anything else at all on any of the other subjects. The majority of my time is being spent on the ‘theme’ for the week in order to assure it gets done.

Ultimately, we would like to get everything on our lists finished – and although we feel like it all needs to be done right away – that is simply not possible. It will be done better and faster if concentrated time is devoted to it and your focus is with that one big project that you can check off your list by week’s end.

Now, look at your list of all that needs to be done. Denote the THEME of the week right now and schedule blocks of time to get moving on all the tasks associated with your chosen theme. Think of it like this…pretend you have a big exam coming up that would require you to spend the bulk of your time on preparing for that exam. That doesn’t mean you will ignore all your other classes. Instead, your concentrated focus would be on the exam preparation.

So, what’s YOUR theme project going to be this week?

About Juli

Coach Juli Shulem, CPC, PCC began as an Efficiency Specialist in 1984 with a focus in those with more difficult organizing and time management challenges. Her experience with individuals with ADHD has made her an expert in coaching those with more challenging issues resulting in wonderful outcomes.

Juli began devoting her professional life to ADHD Productivity Coaching in 2004, and she has helped thousands of individuals become more efficient, less stressed, and better able to manage their time so they can enjoy life more fully. Through her private practice, she provides coaching services around stress and frustration reduction, productivity, time management, organizing, efficiency, prioritizing, decision making, space planning and design, workflow management, paper control, and the special day-to-day challenges of living with ADHD. She has a particular interest in businesses and setting up strategies for an entire staff while working with the ADHD owner of the company.  She leads seminars, trainings, and workshops for corporations and colleges.

Juli has written and published two books: Order! A logical approach to an organized way of life and Home-Based Business Mom: A guide to organizing and time management for working women. Click here to find Juli in the JST Directory and connect with her.

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