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Peace of Mind Organizing

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Articles tagged with task-management

Gaining focus when I'm feeling distracted

24 August 2017 | Comments [0] »

I’m thrilled to have a two whole days at my desk this week (today and tomorrow) and a light client load next week. It’s after 3 pm and while I have created some order, not a whole lot else has been accomplished. I’m particularly distractible today—I’m finding myself bouncing from small task to small task and website to website. I have a task list, but I’m not exactly plowing through it.

When this happens, I know that it’s time to pull out my secret weapon: My timer. I know from experience that when I set my timer for just a few minutes—as little as five minutes—I get stuff done. I like playing beat the clock, and knowing the clock is ticking in the background tends to keep me focused.

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The hallmarks of a good task list

22 May 2017 | Comments [0] »

Do you keep a task list? I’m surprised by the number of people I meet who don’t. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that my memory isn’t what it used to be, but I think I’d be lost without my task list. And certainly I’d be less productive.

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Using the Reminders feature of Evernote

10 January 2017 | Comments [0] »

I’ve finally embraced Evernote and it’s become an indispensable part of my work and life. Every now and then I think about writing another blog post about how I use Evernote and I get overwhelmed at the thought of it. So my plan is to highlight one feature at a time, as the mood strikes me. Today I’m going to focus on the Reminders feature of Evernote, which I absolutely love.

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Making my desk day productive

3 November 2016 | Comments [0] »

My client schedule is light this week and I had high hopes for getting a lot done. I dusted off my important tasks so they were front and center along the urgent stuff. Yet, the last couple of days got away from me. Part of the problem is my obsession with Hamilton and the distraction of the coming election.

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Keeping the important top of mind

28 October 2016 | Comments [0] »

It’s so easy to focus on urgent tasks, rather than important ones, isn’t it? Every day I create a list of tasks I want to accomplish that day. (When I’m on my game, I do it the night before.) I try to keep the list short so I have a fighting chance of actually accomplishing all of them.

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Transpose + Kanban = Great task management

29 October 2015 | Comments [0] »

For the last month or so, I’ve been using a template I created on the fabulous form-making making website, Transpose, to manage my daily tasks kanban style.

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Transpose helps you create forms easily

10 September 2015 | Comments [0] »

I love creating forms and have been making them for years. I used to use Word, then I moved to Excel. But now I have a much easier way to create forms: Transpose.

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How I use Evernote

8 June 2015 | Comments [4] »

A year ago, Springpad, the online digital organizing system I’d been using, went belly up. Fortunately, all the notes and notebooks I’d created in Springpad were transferred to Evernote, a similar, less graphical product. But I was sad.

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Worth repeating: Bingo anniversary

23 March 2015 | Comments [0] »

Back in 2011, I created a Bingo board to hep me get non-urgent tasks done on a regular basis. I blogged about it four or five times and today have selected one of the most useful of those posts to repeat to spread the word about the value of building fun into your task list.

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Your memory is a terrible thing to rely on

23 February 2015 | Comments [0] »

When I was in my twenties, I had a mind like a steel trap. Oh, the things I could keep in there and recall in a nanosecond! It made me a valuable employee; my ability to keep details straight and handle logistics well allowed me to work on some great projects. (For example, I organized—and attended—small conference in Africa with participants from all over the world. I put it together from my office in Washington, D.C., and this was before the internet.)

Now that I’m in my fifties, my memory is a shadow of its former self. But I’m lucky: in the intervening three decades, technology has emerged that helps me compensate. There’s no need to store things in my brain. I can write everything down and access it instantly using the app of my choice. That frees my brain for more important things.

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Revisiting personal kanban

24 October 2014 | Comments [2] »

Back in 2010, I discovered personal kanban , a system of visual task management that I used for awhile. In a nutshell, I divided a large whiteboard into three sections, Backlog, Doing, and Done. Then I’d use Post-ItĀ® notes to write down individual tasks and move them through the process.

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Working during times of stress

21 July 2014 | Comments [4] »

Since my schedule lightened up a couple of years ago, I’ve lived with relatively little stress. I work hard, which is occasionally stressful, but it’s good stress, since I love my clients and my work. Everything else has been on a pretty even keel. I know that I’m very fortunate.

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RIP Springpad

2 June 2014 | Comments [4] »

I was so excited at the beginning of this year to partner with Springpad, the digital organizing assistant, to create some custom Springpad notebooks. When they first approached me in November 2013, I started trying out the service to see if it was something I wanted to be involved with. From the beginning, I loved it. It was the first electronic task management system that ever worked for me.

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Adding structure to an unstructured day

21 March 2014 | Comments [2] »

The other day I found myself with a work day with no appointments in it all. Nothing to structure the day into chunks. I had a task list, but I found the lack of structure made it a little hard for me to focus on what I needed to get done.

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Springpad launches Notebook Store

17 March 2014 | Comments [0] »

I’ve been using the free website and app Springpad for a few months now and if you’ve been reading my blog you know that I’m quite a fan. It’s helped me eliminate random notes and scraps of paper and, for the first time, I’m using an electronic task list successfully.

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How I'm using Springpad

24 February 2014 | Comments [0] »

For the last three months, I’ve been using (and enjoying) Springpad, the personal-organizer app. I’ve accessed it daily, either from my desktop, iPad or iPhone (often all three in the course of day). I wanted to share here how I’m using it and why I like it so much.

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My exciting partnership with Springpad!

6 January 2014 | Comments [0] »

As part of its Operation Organization campaign this month, Springpad is partnering with an elite list of organization professionals to launch exclusive, customized Springpad notebooks that include ideas, information and recommendations from these experts. You can find all of the notebooks at organize.springpad.com.

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A task manager I can take with me

23 December 2013 | Comments [1] »

I tend to struggle a bit with task management. I know that managing tasks electronically makes a lot of sense for me. I’ve had an electronic calendar for years and love that I always have the means to make an appointment (in the form of my iPhone and before that iPod Touch and before that Palm) in my purse or pocket.

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More wisdom from Mark Forster

16 October 2013 | Comments [0] »

Over the years, I’ve written 47(!) blog posts that mention Mark Forster, my favorite time-management guy. Mark really enjoys thinking about things like time management and productivity. I’ve been a fan ever since I read his book Do It Tomorrow and Other Secrets of Time Management seven years ago.

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Getting a handle on task management

27 February 2013 | Comments [3] »

I’m a bit obsessed with trying to find a great way to stay on top of my tasks. I find that when I’m a task-management groove, life is good. But when a system stops working for me and I get into task-management limbo, I feel out of control and tense.

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Juggling task-management systems

8 October 2012 | Comments [4] »

I know that somewhere around here I have a list—actually I think it’s more than one list—of potential blog post subjects. The idea is that if I sit down to blog without knowing what I want to blog about, I consult the list, where I capture ideas as they come to me, and voila a blog post presents itself.

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Bingo anniversary!

27 July 2012 | Comments [1] »

A year ago today, I first blogged about To-Do List Bingo. I created a bingo board after reading a blog post about social media bingo from my friend, Jacquelyn Kittredge of e-bakery.

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Mark Forster's latest task-management system

30 April 2012 | Comments [0] »

If you’ve been reading my blog awhile, you know that I’m a big fan of Mark Forster, one of the most creative time-management gurus out there.

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Mark Forster does it again

16 February 2011 | Comments [0] »

Every now and then I write here that my time management guru, Mark Forster has created a new task-management system and that it’s awesome. In fact, last April I wrote a love letter to DWM, which at the time was his latest system. And then just two months ago, I wrote about a new tweak to Autofocus, which has been my favorite of his systems.

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Mark Forster helps me keep my sanity

7 December 2010 | Comments [0] »

I’ve been a follower of time-management expert Mark Forster for years now. When he develops a new time-management system, I sit up and take notice.

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Personal Kanban for task management

28 June 2010 | Comments [7] »

For several years I’ve been using the various task management techniques created by Mark Forster. The most recent has been DWM. But life and work got sort of crazy and I spent a few weeks doing nothing but putting out fires. I ignored my task list in my DWM planner. These task lists are calendar based, so I needed to figure out how best to get back in the saddle.

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Yet another new task-management system from Mark Forster

10 February 2010 | Comments [0] »

Mark Forster is my time management guru. As I’ve blogged about before, I loved his book, Do It Tomorrow and Other Secrets of Time Management. I used his DIT system for managing tasks for a year or so, and then he introduced Autofocus in January 2009. I was a little reluctant to switch at first, because DIT was working for me, but I decided to try it. I was over the moon. (I’ve blogged about Autofocus many times.)

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Getting things done with Autofocus

17 September 2009 | Comments [0] »

I’ve written quite a bit about Autofocus, the task-management system invented by my favorite time-management guru, Mark Forster. The original Autofocus debuted on January 5, 2009. I was an eager beta tester and became an enthusiastic user.

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Brand-new, revised instructions for Autofocus

4 August 2009 | Comments [0] »

I’ve written in some detail about time-management guru Mark Forster’s new task-management system, called Autofocus. I’m a giant fan.

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Excited about my to-do list

9 February 2009 | Comments [0] »

Last week was one of those weeks I wasn’t at my desk much and when I was I had to be focused on urgent items. I’m not sure I actually looked at my to-do list all week, except to add to it.

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