In my previous post where I was talking about my goals for 2018, I had mentioned time management as one of the important things that I wanted to address this year. All during my student years, I managed multiple projects, assignments, classes, preparation for exams and more, along with having fun and enjoying the typical college life. I’ve always been good at drawing up schedules and streamlining my day to handle different projects. Honestly I think I’ve just been lazy the past one year. So I brought my A-game back this year and so far I’ve been powering through to-do lists and meeting my deadlines like no tomorrow this entire month. So it’s been a great start to the new year!
Trousers: VanHuesen | Top, earrings: koovs.com | Bag: KateSpadeNY | Shoes: Catwalk
Photography: Meghna Chinaiah
Location: Groove 9
I also thought I’d list out some of the apps that I find most helpful when it comes to scheduling and managing various tasks. These are the ones that I use on a daily basis and simply can’t do without!
Calendar on Mac OS (previously iCal)
My macbook’s default calendar app is what I mainly use to plan the ‘big picture’. I keep track of event and shoot dates, I also use it as an editorial calendar to list what to post on which day on my blog. The calendar app is simple and straightforward and is perfect for basic scheduling. I have different colour coded mini-calendars for my blog, youtube channel and for two clients that I consult for. All I need to do is select the calendar view by ‘week’ or ‘day’ to know what my daily/weekly tasks are for each of my clients and platforms.
If I need to change the time/date, I just drag and drop the event. The best part is it syncs between my MacBook Pro, MacBook Air and iPhone. So no matter where I am, and which machine I am using, I can view my schedule anytime at my convenience.
From the time I discovered this app about two years ago, I’ve become addicted to it! It’s the most neat interface I’ve seen and I love it for creating lists. If you are someone who loves to check-off items on a list at the end of the day, this app is perfect for that. The three main lists I have are ‘To-do’, ‘Important’ and ‘Shopping’. To-do keeps getting updated everyday with new tasks. Important has all the bigger long term stuff like, need to renew my car insurance next month or pay a particular bill by next month etc. Shopping again is to keep track of what I need in the near and far future so that I can budget and plan accordingly. This includes both personal & home shopping. Other than these 3, random lists keep getting created. One list that I have had since two years is ‘Tattoo Ideas’. I’ve been adding/deleting ideas since two years as and when I keep changing my mind. And based on the rate at which I change my mind about what tattoo I want and where, it looks like that’s not happening any time soon!
Stickies on MacBook are again a boon for someone like me who keeps shuffling between 10 different tasks a day. I have a different coloured sticky note for a couple of my clients where I’m noting down immediate ideas and steps that I need to do in the next few hours. Since I manage their social media strategies/marketing, it’s super useful to have sticky notes with immediate-plan-of-action sitting right there on the desktop. The best part is it’s there even if I shut down my laptop. Extremely useful when you are a one woman army managing a blog and a consulting business with minimum help!
Notes on iPhone
This is again something that I use a lot. I also like the fact that you can doodle on notes. So that’s where all my rough ideas, rough schedules, drafts of posts and minutes of meeting go before making it to Wunderlist and Calendar. I even use it to take quick notes during meetings and calls. I don’t generally use a notepad since I find typing on the phone easier. Plus I have all information on one device so there’s no worry of misplacing a notepad with important minutes of the meeting!
Okay so I am a bit old-school in this aspect, that no matter how well I use technology and apps to organise and schedule my life, I need a physical notebook where I can write. Since cutting down on internet time was also one of my goals, I feel having a notebook helps me in achieving that. While using a laptop or phone, I automatically tend to wander about in between to check WhatsApp messages or scroll through Instagram.
So I have two notebooks one for each of my businesses, where I ‘ideate’. From strategy to marketing plans to content ideas, I find that moving away from my laptop and just taking time out to write, actually write with a pen, makes me think of different and better ideas. I don’t write any to-do lists or make an editorial calendar in the notebook. It is purely for a creative purpose, to come up with new and unique ideas for the blog, concept shoots and for my client’s branding strategies. Even the notebooks reflect the personality of each of my businesses which I customised with stickers and doodles on the cover.
So these are all the apps and ways I use to keep myself organised and schedule my time. I use the basic minimum, and each app I use has a specific purpose. That way you actually make use of the functionality of each and utilise them to the fullest!