[infographic] My “10 Simple Step” Blueprint to Killing it Monday Mornings
Most people hate Monday’s. We even have terms dedicated to the suckiness of Monday’s (as you well know if you’ve ever been the happy recipient of “I think somebody’s got a case of the Mondays!”).
I have to say though, I LOVE Mondays! I really do. I wake up feeling ready to take on not only the day- but the whole week. My secret to Monday morning bliss?…
(drum roll please…)
Sunday night is my sanctuary for keeping my week sane and highly productive. A little Sunday night planning can ward off the biggest problem with Monday mornings, which is a feeling of overwhelm.
You start work (either at an office or at home) overwhelmed that you have a whole 5 days worth of work ahead of you. Add to that a slew of unopened emails and tasks that carried over from Friday and it can be downright depressing.
But fear not! Below is a step by step guide to utilizing Sunday so that not only your Monday, but the whole week can run smooth and efficient. And you too can finally love Mondays.
(see full details below the infographic)
1. Find a clean & calm environment
You want this time to not only be productive and useful, but enjoyable! Seriously, I look forward to Sunday nights like it’s an evening at the spa. Create some ambiance, whether that’s with music, some candles or just a clean desk.
2. Grab a treat beverage of choice
I always have a glass of wine at my side during this time, it not only acts as a sort of reward for ‘working’ on a Sunday night but also makes the whole experience more relaxing and enjoyable.
3. Gather your materials
I personally still love to brainstorm and write lists with good ole’ fashioned notebook + pens. For me it helps my thoughts flow and makes me feel a little more creative.
I always have a couple of notebooks and a bunch of different colored highlighters and pens. You can also use note taking apps like Evernote or use documents on your computer if that’s how you work best.
4. Write out your global goals for the week
Take one of your notebooks and think about what you really want to accomplish this week both personally and professionally. The point of this exercise is to get you thinking about what’s really important to you, and should consist of things you know will make you feel both happy and satisfied at the end of the week. It’s a great way to brainstorm prior to listing out any specific projects or tasks for your to-do lists.
My goal list usually consists of about 10 things I really want to make happen that week. Some items make in into ‘projects’ or ‘tasks’ we’ll discuss in later steps, and others are just written down so that I keep them top of mind during the week.
Examples in case your stuck:
- Try a new work out video (personal)
- Get testimonials from 3 clients (professional)
- Finish a particular fiction book (personal)
- Complete and send out a proposal to a new client (professional)
5. Create a list of projects
Start with two lists: one for professional projects and one for personal projects. The reason
it’s important to consider both the personal + professional aspects of your life is so that you can allocate your time realistically. It’s very common to let life tasks interfere with work and vice versa. This helps you set priorities and expectations for yourself.
On each list write down the big ‘projects’ you have. Keep in mind these are global things you need to accomplish, that will take a list of various smaller tasks to complete.
Example: Send out logo proposal (this is a large project that will take many steps to complete)
6. Fill in tasks under the projects
Underneath each of your projects list out all the steps it will take to accomplish it.
7. Highlight for each day of the week
Take a look at your tasks and with separate colors, highlight what needs to be (and can realistically) be completed on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday…etc.
There will be items that remain on your list, because you are only focusing on what has to be completed on each of those days. There will be items on your list that don’t need to be completed until a later date, or that can’t be completed until a later date because, as an example, you are waiting on further information to complete the next step.
I use both Google calendar and the app Asana, which is a project/task management system that keeps my lists organized and actionable. Use whatever platform you will actually check regularly, and fill out each day with the appropriate tasks. I personally like Asana becauseI can create projects, with the tasks listed underneath. Plus everything can then be assigned due dates which I can view on the calendar.
9. Keep the original lists handy for down time
Put the highlighted list somewhere handy, so that you can refer to it when you have some free time to accomplish the tasks that weren’t deemed ‘necessary’. It always feels good to get extra stuff done and off your plate! Oh- and keep the list for next Sunday, it’s not only helpful to get you moving on your new list but it feels good to see all that you accomplished!
10. Review your goals + tasks to make sure they align
Review your goals and look back over your list of tasks to see if you incorporated actionable steps to complete your goals. Even if you didn’t specifically list a step for your goal (like say, finish reading your new fiction novel), at least make sure you left some time throughout the week to take part in meeting that goal. Also keep this sheet handy throughout the week for quick review to see if you’re on track.
That’s it! I’ve been following these steps each Sunday night for quite a while and it allows me to sleep so well knowing I have my whole week planned with actionable steps for me to be both productive and successful in want I need to accomplish.
Have you ever tried planning on Sunday night? Is there another time during the week you prefer to plan? If so please leave a comment below- I’d love to hear your thoughts, insights + suggestions!