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How Do You Plan Your Week?

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This topic contains 11 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  Yvonne A Jones 6 years, 2 months ago.

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  • #5426

    Yvonne A Jones

    Whether you work exclusively from home, or you have a full time job with a
    ‘side hustle’, how do you plan your week? Weekly? Daily? Mornings or the
    night before?

    Please share what works for you.

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  • Author
  • #5431

    Scott Hogue

    I am going to make a quote here:
    Planning works poorly, but better than any other option we have.

    My plans usually go out the window by 10 am. In management training I was taught that good planning time returned at least a ten fold return on investment. The problem is most project style plans are like links in a chain, steps that require each other. There is a lot of single point of failure in my life. The grandson’s ear drum ruptured recently. Since most of the family work in jobs instead of businesses as I do they aren’t as flexible when it comes to picking a child up at school in the middle of the day. How do you think that event affected my plans for the day?

    So how do I plan? I have repetitive tasks, like balancing the accounts and making the deposits that are the foundation of my plans and the work arounds. These things have to be done. Sort of like you can’t hire someone to do your pushups for you. We have to do a lot of work, to just be able to work. Think of how much work it is to get up, eat breakfast, shower and just show up at a job!

    I do a lot of Earl Nightingale method of planning, He said, “I take a piece of paper and write down what I want to do, then frequently during the day I look at it and see what I can do right here where I am before I move on.”

    The trick is really knowing and facing what you want to get done. Do you really want to clean the kitchen or do you want a new article.
    The kitchen may seem urgent, but really how important is cleaning the kitchen to your long term goals?

    Steven Covey talked about the four quadrants of activity. Here is a link to a pdf that is pretty good on it:

    When I was in industry I took a legal tablet and would write down 25 things to do that were related to obtaining my goals. I would do as many as possible before lunch, transfer any unfinished after lunch to a new page, mark off the completed, date the sheet and file it for future reference. It was so effective that my boss had me teach it to everyone that worked for him, but even so, I was the only one that used it.

    We fight against having our time so scheduled. It is human nature.

    The trick in planning is to know what you want in life and then plan or intend to do the things that are necessary to achieve your desires.

    It is easy to plan for others. Not so when you have to exercise discipline.

    Without clarity you really can’t make effective plans. You are just scheduling activity or busy work.

    When we can mark something off of our list that feels good, so instead of achieving our main objective, lists often become busy work and good feeling props. Sort of like candy without nutrition or long term benefit.

    I know this is rambling, but I hope it gives you some ideas.
    I didn’t have time to make it clear and connected, I have some plans I need to tend to…

    Scott Hogue CChH
    Follow me in the "Use What You Learn Challenge" as I create a website using what I learn from Sean that is a Platform for my niche:

    The thread on this group that explains it:

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    • #5502

      Yvonne A Jones

      Hi Scott,

      I read your reply twice because you covered many areas. Loved how you answered giving different strategies, some of
      which have worked for you, while noting the pros and cons as you went along. The Earl Nightingale method can still
      work, I believe, but in a world where we’re pulled in so many directions, it would need to be tightened up a bit.
      You also spoke to whether one may want to stick to what they wrote down. Therein lies one of the challenges – mindset.

      I too like to write it down but no longer do my 6 most important things to do list as I was taught many years ago. My
      focus is on what are the three priority tasks I must do in order to get closer to my goals. I adopted this from Sean’s
      training and find that to be more effective.

      Thank you for your feedback.

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  • #5433

    Don Sturgill


    I use a system called The DEEP. It helps keep me on track by aligning my daily tasks (The MAP – “my action plan”) with my weekly/monthly/yearly/life ambitions.

    The DEEP is essential to me … since I’m the kind of guy who can forget who he is and where he’s going … then end up somewhere else quite quickly.

    Real soon, I’ll get a tutorial prepared and loaded here on PreneurPal so folks can have a look.

    Bottom line, though, for weekly planning is that my primary focus is on daily planning and chunks of accomplishments. It’s like the wise man told the monk … here’s how to get to the holy mountain: keep walking in that direction.

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    • #5439

      Yvonne A Jones

      I like your weekly planning with the daily chunks of accomplishment that keep moving you toward your goals.
      Yes, please share the DEEP tutorial with us when available.

      Thank you,

      Are you ready to leverage client relationships and grow your business quickly?
      Download your Free Guide, "Relationship Marketing: Key to Small Business Success" at

      2 users thanked author for this post.
  • #5453

    Dana Cassell

    I’ve used a small Windows program – Quick To-Do Pro – for years. Was going to post the URL, but it is “not reachable,” so suspect it is no longer available. But there are probably newer, even better apps today. The reason I’ve stuck with this is because I can put in a recurring task, note its priority level and which project it’s assigned to, give it a due date, then note how often it needs to show again – for example, weekly, monthly, annually – and it will show up as assigned. So last thing each Sunday evening, I look over the coming week to see if any changes are needed, add in any new or one-time tasks, then print out my tasks to do for the week in deadline order. (Yes; I like to have an old-school sheet of paper on my desk to cross off or add notes to.)

    I’m sorry I cannot offer the program’s page, but if you Google “Quick to-do Pro” Google shows screenshots of it, plus after those it lists possible tools that may do the same thing.

    My takeaway is that if you find some small app like this to automate the scheduling of your recurring tasks (am becoming familiar with Todoist, which appears to be able to do this similarly), you don’t waste any time writing out a new list every week – or, worse, forgetting about some periodic task (such as tax or maintenance related).

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    • #5483

      Yvonne A Jones

      Thank you, Dana, for sharing. When you can find an app that automates certain areas of
      your business, I consider that a blessing, don’t you. Especially like the
      point about the app not allowing you to forget essential areas, as well as
      being able to set priority tasks.

      Are you ready to leverage client relationships and grow your business quickly?
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  • #5454

    Bruce Hoag

    I’m pretty much with Scott on this.

    There have been many times when I’ve planned a week. Usually, by Tuesday, something has happened to change that.

    Now I have a pretty good idea of what I want to accomplish in my head, and all I can do is see how the day goes.

    That may sound incredibly lackadaisical, but it beats being frustrated all the time because things aren’t going the way I’d like them to.

    There’s a book that I’d like to recommend. It’s called The One Thing, by Gary Keller with Jay Papasan.

    Your “one thing” is the thing you must do in order for everything else to go according to plan.

    Do you know what my one thing is? It’s going to bed before 9:30 pm.

    Do you know how hard that is to do? Much more difficult than you’d ever imagine.

    On those nights when I can go to bed at that time and sleep until 5:15-5:30 am, I stand the best chance of accomplishing what’s on my list. Those are the best days.

    But not being sleepy, getting back later than planned, coughing during the night, etc can change the best laid plans of mice and men.

    Bruce Hoag PhD
    The Internet Marketing Psychologist
    The Mindful Writer - for deep and persuasive copy

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    • #5493

      Yvonne A Jones

      Dr, Bruce, I can totally understand how the unexpected can derail our plans.
      This is why I believe we should avoid accounting for every waking moment, and
      give ourselves room for the unexpected. Otherwise it leads to frustration and

      Thank you for your feedback. Hope you get to bed on time tonight! 🙂

      Are you ready to leverage client relationships and grow your business quickly?
      Download your Free Guide, "Relationship Marketing: Key to Small Business Success" at

      1 user thanked author for this post.
  • #5459

    Julia Rotgers

    I keep it pretty simple and tend to use short “to-do” lists with no more than 3 items on it.
    This reminds me of the most important things I have to do in a day and if more gets done, that’s great!

    I’m also a big fan of chaos planning.
    In other words, allowing chunks of the day, week and month to be unscheduled and used for catch-up if needed.

    With chaos planning the stress is reduced and you can be flexible.

    Instead of planning every chunk of time to get something done, plan time for things to go wrong.

    For example;
    An hour of the day is reserved for chaos (playing with the cat or a nap :-))
    1/2 a day a week is reserved for chaos
    One long weekend a month is left open to take care of chaos (or things that were left undone)

    No more pushing things into next month or rolling “To-do” lists.

    The most important things get done and the rest is probably not that important anyway.

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  • #5491

    Sean Mize


    like you, I’m fond of keeping my to-do list really, really short.

    I find I do much better with one big project and do it A-Z than to have 20 small projects . . I just get lost in them and don’t feel productive at the end of the day!


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  • #5495

    Steve Allen

    Great thread to start Yvonne. Thanks.
    What I do for planning is a simple to-do list I built in a Word document that I cut and paste prioritized things to the top. I added a quote at the top that says, “Sloppy Success is Better Than Perfect Mediocrity” to help keep me on track and moving. I add a ‘ONE THING’ line for each day of the week at the top of the page. Sean, a while back suggested a book called One Thing by Gary Keller and it revolutionized my planning process. The idea is that as part of every 40 line to-do list is one thing that if you complete you’ll feel accomplished for the day. I make that one thing something that always moves me toward my goals (that are written down on a separate document). If the one thing is done early in the day I move on to the next but I never finish a day without completing the task that I earlier decided was important enough to be on the ‘one thing’ list.

    So… at the end of every week I have at least 5 ‘one things’ done and can adjust the list for the next week. That way every month has 20 super important things completed where if I just went off my 40-50 item to-do list, I might get overwhelmed and not get nearly as many of them done.

    That is what works for me but I do believe that everyone has to do what works for them, their personality, their giftings, their hangups, etc. And really, the only people who will gain ANY benefit by planning are the ones who really want to move along anyway. Those without ambition, initiative and/or drive to succeed can plan all day long but never will accomplish anything. You gotta want it.

    If you're looking for a someone to bounce things off of in the IM world, I'm your guy and I really would love to help you out. Helping others is just who I am!

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