How to reorganise and keep up with a changing schedule during covid-19

How I’m keeping up week by week

This is a diversion from what I usually write about, however this is a massive insight into how I’m coping and continuing to run my business with things changing so rapidly and how I’m managing to get my schedule back on track. It’s also resonated with so many people I’ve talked with in the last week that I thought sharing it will likely help you too.

As with a lot of change, mine came about after a bit of a disaster! 

When I moved into my own apartment in November last year, I went through a huge learning curve about myself. You see, I’m an introvert. I love time to myself, when I do training with a team, I am wiped afterwards and over the years I have experienced those crazy days where I’ve worked 12-14 and on rare occasions even more, hours per day and it takes me 2 days to recover. Despite the trade off, I still make that error…. it is what happened last Thursday.

But first, what I learned over the months of being back in Sydney, living by myself with a home office and not having many friends…. is that even as an introvert, I crave some company. As humans, we are not built for isolation. This schedule was okay, but I wasn’t feeling any spark, no excitement to get up in the morning. A weird relationship with my phone as the main ‘person’ I spoke to each day. December came around and I had a little socialising, which helped, January was mostly me going through my days as best as possible. Then things began to kick off in February. Networking events, I met a fantastic group of business ladies, I met another great group of local ladies, and I got my first speaking gig at the Mind Body Spirit Festival. THIS, is where I finally found a balance of moving PFSEA forward in Australia and having an excellent social and intellectual outlet with friends and still plenty of time by myself – I even joined a philosophy club with my aunty, which was GREAT! This was a routine I could thrive in!

And then, the gates began shutting down (I’m picturing Get Smart with the electronic doors closing down as the dynamic duo run through the corridor – anyone else an 80s baby here??) and I found myself all alone again. COVID-19 protocols meant socialising was off the table, big group events CANCELLED. My first Sydney event that I was running, shifted to online and was an intimate chat for two – not quite how I’d imagined my Sydney debut – but lovely all the same. The schedule had changed again.

This happened quickly for me…

For others, I feel they were a week or two behind and this is when we are nearly up to date. Last week, I was accepting calls to catch up; some social, some work related and on Thursday 5 calls, on top of my usual work routine. 10 hours of alert time, 5 hours of face to face interaction on the phone. All calls were great, and that’s part of it, I gave my energy freely and I learned a lot and enjoyed it but even as the day was coming near the end, I knew I’d overdone it. I cancelled a meeting for the next day. Another had no one turn up, I had a nap!

and then a little magic happened…

Having felt the repercussion of what I’d done by taking too much on, having a very unproductive day on the Friday, I decided to fix it and future proof my time. And now my schedule is organised, has clear boundaries, is flexible and well… quite pretty!

Here’s what I did and I encourage you to give it a go too.

  • grabbed a bunch of sticky notes (mine are reused from an event last year, so I have blu-tack holding them up. if you have paper that’s got one side printed and you don’t need it any more, you can cut it into even squares and also use blu-tack to put it up and feel nice and eco too)
  • wrote out one day per sticky note. I work on a 7-day system but if you want to just use this for a 5-day work week that’s great too. Stuck them up across a wall in my office.
  • made a list of my business priorities and what day they need to happen (some of these aren’t strict), added one per sticky note and added them to the wall.
  • went through my google calendar and wrote each appointment out on its own sticky note
  • added in things I want to do – in this case Nia classes. I’ve started with 2, but just added a third sticky note for this because it gets me moving my body which is a great thing to do! and it feels good for my mind and body.

I’m so excited that after tomorrow I get to clear off all the one-time events, keep my canvas for my recurring events on the schedule and plan out a fresh new week. I will not put more than 4-5 notes per day and if someone requests a meeting on a day that’s full, i can see if something can move or I tell them no that it will need to be next week! I am loving this system. It is working so well and helping me keep organised and on track, whilst flexible and adaptable and also it’s beautifully visual which makes it really easy to know exactly what I’m up to at a glance.It is also helping me get through my tasks each day and I feel so productive!

Here’s a photo so you can see how my week panned out. It might be hard to read some items, because they’re in pencil so I can erase them and reuse the sticky note again. But it will give you a really clear idea. and the ones in marker are my repeat events so I know those notes are most important!

Have a go and let me know if the comments if it works for you too. Got any questions, then feel free to ask those too! Make sure you get all the latest direct to your inbox, sign up via the link below.

These are crazy times, and I’ve found this system is helping me to stay focused and organised and I hope it will help you too!

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