In Part 1 of this series, I introduced the idea that a combination of mindfulness and planning can help you finish the year with finesse. We focused on a set of steps to gain focus and clarity:
- Celebrate your victories.
- Take a snapshot inventory.
- Clear your plate.
- Focus on next actions.
In this post we’ll bookend that discussion, as I teach you how to plan the last three months of the year. All too often, the momentum of planning we create at the beginning of the year has long fizzled by October. I’ll show you how to get that back!
Note: You can look at this exercise with more than just scrapbooking in mind. It’s your call.
Step 1. Estimate your time. Look at a calendar and pencil in the times you are likely to scrapbook or do scrapbook-related tasks. It’s important to be realistic, with a hopeful edge.
Look at every week day and weekend between now and January 1st. Think about your current habits and what that time of year looked like last time around. Take a good guess and pencil in 30 minutes here and 3 hours there.
This activity will give you a reasonable time budget, a general sense of how much time left in 2014 you have to scrapbook. Plus, making appointments for yourself now will make these estimates more likely to happen!
Step 2. Choose one big thing. With a context of time in mind, I suggest choosing one big thing to be the focus of your attention. This is not the time to spread yourself thin.
Consider whether that is a project you want to finish or one you’re itching to start. While I’m not saying you can’t do other things, you should select one activity as your priority.
Your time budget will give you a clue as to whether you’ll have just enough time for this one thing or you’ll have extra for something else.
Step 3. List essential tasks. The spaces around your big thing will be filled with everyday, almost non-negotiable, tasks. Activities like photo processing and backing up fit in this category.
Failing to include these “little” tasks (which actually add up), is one of the biggest reasons that plans fall apart. When you take on too many big things, there’s no time left for rest.
And the thing is, these activities are the ones that also contribute the most to memory keeping. After all, you need photos to scrapbook!
What’s your “one big thing” for the rest of the year? Leave a comment and share what scrapbook activity you will focus on between now and 2015.
P.S. If you would like help focusing on your one big thing, you’ll want to stick around. At the end of this month I’m opening registration for a 100% free community activity, the Holiday Focus Circle.