If you didn't get around to making resolutions in January, or if you have already forgotten them...you have a second chance. The Chinese New Year starts on Feb 14th, and it just happens to be the Year of the Tiger...let's make that the Year of the Paper Tiger.
What: Maybe your resolutions have always fallen flat, and like me you just stopped making them. You do, however, need to set goals in order to know where you are heading and how you are going to get there. You can’t just punch this in your GPS and expect to get directions, so you’ll have to do a little work.
So What: Once again, get a piece of paper, we are going to write this down. When we are working with a client on organizing, we first start with what we call the Productive Environment Process™. I made a few modifications to the regular steps in the process to make it work for my goal setting.
1. Design Your Vision: Where would you like to be by the end of the year, or whatever your time frame may be? Be as broad or specific as you like, because you can break it down later.
You may think of your calendar as only a time management tool, but it is also an important organizing tool. Barbara Hemphill, author of “Taming The Paper Tiger at Work”, teaches an organizing method called the Magic 6™, which we use at Living Orderly. The calendar is number three of her Magic 6™. You can eliminate a lot of incoming paper and computer files by using your calendar.
When you are going through your inbox or email, the key is to take the information you need from a document or email, enter it in your calendar, and ditch or delete the original. If there are details, that are too much to enter into your calendar, keep it but file in a Pending File, Action File or a Tickler File. (I will write more about using a Tickler File later. I use a Tickler File called the Swiftfile, and it is absolutely one of my most essential tools.) Depending on your filing system, you may want to note on your calendar where you filed the document with the details.