Planning any project is important, but it can also be a massive distraction to actually sitting down and doing the work. It’s easy to get so consumed with finding the right productivity tool that we forget the tool is a means to an end, not the end itself.
With that in mind, here are a few sweet and simple planning tools that will enable you to get on with doing the work that really matters:
Daily Greatness Business Planner
The Daily Greatness business planner contains a year’s worth of weekly planner, review sheets, quarterly planning sections, annual business goals, and more. Each day, if offers helpful little mindset and productivity-related questions. At $40, they are not the cheapest planners on the market, but I’ve found it invaluable for organising my ideas, projects and goals.
If you’re interested you can get 5% off your own planner here.
Getting Things Done
My husband introduced me to Getting Things Done by David Allen about six years ago. Now, I don’t know how I managed my life pre-GTD.
It takes a while to get your head around this system and implement it, but it’s well worth it—especially if you do a lot of creative work. GTD is especially useful for capturing those nagging thoughts, ideas and to-dos that are most likely to pop up just before we fall asleep or right in the middle of a really important client session/project.
On a psychological/emotional level, it’s also great for our self-trust and stress levels to have a system that enables us to stay on top of our most important projects without getting overwhelmed..
You Need A Budget
YNAB is the best solution I’ve come across for financial software so far (as a Brit, I don’t have access to services like Mint). It’s not perfect, but it’s easy to use and much more aesthetically pleasing (and therefore nicer to use) than some of the alternatives.
Certain features that would be super useful, such as support for multiple currencies, aren’t yet available. Still, YNAB encourages good financial hygiene, for example living off last month’s income, which is invaluable as a freelancer or solopreneur.
Sometimes, the most effective planning sessions we have involve ourselves, somewhere new, and a few hours journaling or brainstorming.
Try free-writing (also called stream-of-consciousness writing), where you write at a steady pace, not stopping to think but just recording whatever comes to mind.
What are your favourite creative planning tools? Leave a comment and share your thoughts.
- Why we procrastinate (and what to do about it)
- The 4 key mindset shifts we need to make to get it done, make it happen, and find fulfilment in the process
- Practical tools and suggestions for getting started and taking action with any stretch project
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