The past week has been an interesting experiment for me. I’ve been enjoying it much more than I thought I would, and the planning and calendar checking didn’t take as long as I had originally thought. In all honesty, I can definitely see how taking the time to sit down and plan out your month, week, and day can really free up a lot of time and create a happier, more balanced life.
When I first bought my Panda Planner, received it in the mail, and opened up the fresh, crisp pages I thought “This sh*t is going to take up so much of my time, there is no way it’s going to work.” After the initial hour or so spent planning my month and week ahead, the daily sections were much quicker and easier to complete. I think with “practice” and getting used to this habit, I’ll eventually have it down to a “science” and will be able to complete the monthly and weekly sections more quickly as well.
Not to mention, it’s just been a lot of fun. I started out very plain and boring, but then I started adding stickers and getting more creative with it. It makes me want to take lettering classes so that I can make the dates, affirmations, and plans look pretty too! But for now, my simple cursive and bubble letters will have to do.
So, it’s only been a week. And good habits are not established in just a week. There is still a good possibility that after doing this for a few weeks — or even a few months to be honest — I will lose my excitement over planning and organizing and fall off the “get my sh*t together” wagon. I don’t want to create a false sense of accomplishment for completing a week of my challenge, but I’m still pretty optimistic I’ll be able to succeed. It also helps that my daily affirmation for the month is “I believe in myself and my ability to succeed.”
Also, don’t get the impression that I accomplished 100% of my goals and got everything done as planned, because that was not the case. There were tasks I had and plans made that never came to full fruition, as well as tasks that ended up just taking a lot longer than I realized, so the timelines had to be pushed back a bit.
A major one was a project that I’m working on for work. I had the goal of completing the project this week, but as I got into the meat of the work I realized it was probably more of a two week job. But that’s okay! I still got a lot of work done on it and am halfway to fully completing a job for work. One that I am hoping will please the boss and help me in becoming a more important part of the company.
And the little tasks that I didn’t manage to complete were almost always moved to the next day and completed then.
For example, after putting off a call for more than two weeks, once I put it on my task list in my planner, it only took me two more days to complete (hey, it’s an improvement!). I got it done and it was a major step in closing out a financial issue I’ve been dealing with for months (water leak at the house, HUGE water bill, had it repaired, getting water company to adjust the amount owed).
I have major anxiety about being on the phone, for whatever reason – maybe I need to have that examined – and it just takes me forever to finally pick up the phone and make that phone call. When it’s something this important, I really need to get it done more quickly, and having it written down as a task to complete for the day, and then knowing the feeling I would get once I checked it off, was a major factor in getting me to ACTUALLY, FINALLY make that call! Once I did it, I was so excited that it all worked out, so I whipped open my planner, checked it off, then felt an overwhelming sense of satisfaction.
Week one check-in summary: I’m feeling optimistic, organized and much more together. I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished in a week and am excited to continue this forward progress.