Planning has always been a huge part of my life, and there’s a reason for that: by planning I see results.
That’s it, that’s my secret for success; I plan for everything. And that includes my finances, my blog, school, events, goals, etc.
By doing this, I was able to pay off all of my debt, and what’s more, I now can save some money, and also allocate some of my resources to things I don´t necessarily need, but do make me happy.
In addition to that, by planning ahead of time, I’ve been able to accomplish things I had only dreamed of, just because I can take the most advantage of my time.
Today, I am working on seven different sources of income, including writing several books, and I am doing great in school and it is all possible just because I am smart with my time.
So… let’s get to it. There are some things I use and do when planning for the following year, which I will describe below. I hope they work for you as much as they do for me.
- The Planner
Contrary to what most people I see on the internet do, I don’t like really cute, but bulky planners, that end up being filled with receipts and just random papers.
What has worked for me is the Moleskine Weekly Planner, which you can get on amazon by clicking on the link below.
I love this one specific planner just because it is concise, it has the perfect space for me to plan every single day without overloading myself with tasks, and it also has some space for me to braindump, write down my ideas, my goals, books I need to read, thinks I need to do, etc.
Plus, this planner is just the perfect size, it fits in my backpack, it doesn’t add a lot of weight, and it has enough room for me to write down everything I need.
- My Goals
I feel like the majority of people love writing a huge list of goals they want to accomplish the following year. This is kind of like a ritual we all do to feel better about ourselves.
But in reality, writing my goals like that doesn’t help. And this is just personal opinion.
So instead of just writing a huge list of goals and things I need to do, I write the steps I need to take to achieve every goal.
So for instance, if my goal is to read 10 books this year, I will select the books I want to read and then write down each day the chapter of the book I have to read. So I will go “January first: chapter one, book 1 – January second: chapter 2, book 1” and so forth. This way I know exactly what I have to do, and when I have to do it.
And, let’s be honest, I need to break down my goals into super doable things, so that way I’ll never feel overwhelmed or intimidated by them.
- Recurring Tasks
This is an easy one, but one in which a lot of people get lost. So basically what I do, is, I allocate designated time to things I already know I’ll have to do in a specific time.
So take, for instance, walking. I know I walk every single day for an hour, from 4 am to 5 am, so I don’t take into consideration that hour when planning for the tasks I need to do every day.
This has helped me get used to a routine, and be ten times more productive because I’m not wasting time trying to figure out what I have to do next. If it is a recurring task, I do it usually in the morning, and I do one after the other, so I have a well established morning routine.
Having these things in mind, also helps me to understand the true amount of time I have so that I don’t over plan for myself.
- Time Blocking
When I first heard of this technique I didn’t like it, and the reason why was super dumb. I felt like there was no way for me to truly know how much time I would need to finish each of the things I had to. Moving forward, I learned how to time myself, how to use my time wisely and also how to be more efficient with the task at hand.
After getting used to it, time blocking has allowed me to stay on top of everything I have to do, stay on top of all of my projects and just do my best. This has also boosted my productivity to a whole new level.
- Plan Ahead Financially
As crazy as it may sound, I have a five-year financial plan. This includes every single bill I have to pay, the money I want to spend on myself, and also, the money I want to save each month.
I created an amazing excel spreadsheet that has helped me to stay on top of my finances and understand when I need to stop spending so much, and also when I will have to spend more than usual (like during Christmas and the months before that).
By having all of this in front of me, I’ve been able to truly understand where I’m at, and create a program that helped me pay all of my debt, and stop overspending. Now I don’t relly on my credit card to make it to the end of the month.
I used to spend a lot of things I didn’t need, but I thought I did, so now that I plan everything, I understand what is truly a necessity and what is just a pleasure I want to indulge in.
Thanks a lot for reading, I hope this works for you as much as it does for me!