Creating A Master Calendar That Works
In the modern world we are busier than ever trying to fit family life, work-life, and leisure into an increasingly shorter day, so it is no surprise that we often forget appointments, anniversaries, or what time the kids need picking up from the after school class.
It is also common to use many different types of calendar; from the one on your email that handles your work events to the one on your phone that arranges your personal life, and maybe one hanging from the fridge that organizes the kids.
With multiple calendars on the go it is no wonder we get confused and miss some events, so here we are going to look at how to create one master calendar that actually works.
Write down your life
The first step when it comes to amalgamating all the calendars in your life is to write down a detailed list of what you do every single day and how long each activity takes. This may seem daunting at first but you may quickly find your weekdays fall into a healthy routine revolving around the kids and work, whereas your evenings and weekends may be more about socializing and exercise.
The purpose of this is to understand what you are really doing on any one given day and whether you are making the best use of your time. You might find you are drinking far too much coffee when your time could be better spent in the gym! Find out where you have spare time (if any!), you might have that burning itch to take up a new hobby, and now could be the time to fit it in.
Many people lead a haphazard life, so now that you have a written log of your entire week’s activities you can start to analyze it to make sure you are really using your time wisely. Sure, there are going to be many immovable entries perhaps regarding the children being at school or the hours you need to be in the office, but could you condense all your weekly shopping into one longer trip to save hours elsewhere? Start looking at repeated activities and see how you can rearrange and structure them more effectively. You will likely find that you have much more spare time on your hands in which you can enjoy life.
Merge your calendars
Once you have analyzed the structure and timings of your days you need to import all the details from each of your individual calendars into one master calendar. If they are all web-based then this should be an easy task, however, if you are old school and use a paper and pen it may take longer to bring the entries into one electronic format.
The key is to keep them together, and an electronic format easily allows for new entries to be added, or others to be removed. If you are looking for an example of different master calendars then check out this website where you can find many different styles. You can download them or even print them off so you have something visible on your desk or in the kitchen to remind you of your schedule.
If you have been really thorough in preparing your master calendar you will have a clear view of your plans for each day well in advance. This means you can mentally prepare for each day the night before, so you know when you are going to be busiest, and hopefully, if you have planned carefully, you will have some free time, or ‘me’ time to look forward to. This should be all the incentivization you need to complete all the events in your calendar. There will be non-negotiable events during the day but there will also be optional entries that you might loathe doing but have to do. This is where discipline is key. You have decided to create a master calendar for a reason: to better organize your life, so make sure you stick to it!
Organizing our busy lives is no mean feat in the 21st Century. We all struggle with it at times, and we wish there were more hours in the day, however, with a little bit of forward-thinking and some careful planning you can make better use of your time by creating a master calendar to include all your daily activities. Once you know what you have to do and how long it takes you can start to structure your days allowing you to be prepared in advance.
You will need to be disciplined, but if you succeed your busy life will become that little bit less hectic and a lot more enjoyable.