It’s Friday, and you’re battered from a 5-day attack on your focus, attention, and patience; a battle that started the moment your alarm blared Monday morning.
If you had a plan to begin with, it’s now buried in the rubble of a hellish week that bombarded you with hundreds of emails, dozens of phone calls, and the constant pull of customer demands. Your reserves have long since been exhausted.
Yes, the work-week struggle was real, and though it’s now over, another battle looms next week.
The person who enters the weekend with a clean slate, who ties up loose ends, and who thoughtfully closes open projects will start next weeks campaign fresh, reinvigorated, and ready to crush it. What’s more, their free hours won’t be consumed with thoughts of unfinished tasks or worries over the many troubles next week might bring. They’ll enjoy a truly restful weekend.
This all begins with a weekly review.
Borne out of David Allen’s Getting Things Done methodology, the weekly review is a staple of consistent productivity. His method is straightforward. I’m going to make it brain-dead simple:
Start with your physical space. Clear your desk, organize your papers, shred old bills and receipts.
Move to your digital life by closing old browser tabs, shutting down once-useful programs that now clutter up your taskbar, and get any processed/read emails out of your view so as not to distract you next week.
Review your notes from the week, capturing unprocessed actions. Consolidate any remaining actions into a single todo list. Move all emails, actions, notes, and other files (both physical and digital) to their appropriate locations. Keep them with associated projects so you don’t have to search for them later.
Also, for those unreturned emails and phone calls, go through and mark them for follow-up or set a reminder so you don’t forget to track them down next week.
Look at your calendar for future meetings and events, doing or scheduling any up front tasks so you’re ready for them. Lay the groundwork for project milestones that are due the following week. Schedule any tasks or blocks of time that need focused attention, reserving that time now before other people or distractions steal those times away. Finally, list out anything else on your mind such that, when Monday morning comes around, you’ll be able to pick up right where you left off.
This might take you 30 minutes at first, but after a few weeks, you’ll knock it out in 15 minutes.
The time you’d otherwise spend in disorganized chaos will more than repay the minimal time investment in this weekly review.
Bonus points if you capture your weekly review in a checklist you can reuse week after week.
About the Author
HUSBAND, FATHER, ENTREPRENEUR, BUSINESS STRATEGIST, AUTHOR, FITNESS NUT, ORGANIZATION FREAK, PRODUCTIVITY JUNKIE
I help high-achieving entrepreneurs organize their brain and schedule so they can organize their life and business.
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