Thursday, July 16, 2009

A Professional Make-Over

CHICKS ROCK! welcomes our latest guest blogger, Monica:

Monica Diaz is owner of Style Matters, Inc., a style consulting firm catering to image needs of individuals and corporations. Monica offers one on one personal consultations as well as group workshops. Look for Monica when she demonstrates personal style makeovers at our upcoming TWM Members-only Event on August 26th!

Helping others organize themselves is part of my business as a personal style consultant. But when it came to organizing my schedule, I was in desperate need of a make-over. I was given some advice from a friend who suggested I stop relying on scattered notes on different pieces of papers.

So I put together a plan -- it was time to get a calendar and start crossing items off an actual To Do list. I’m already seeing results. I feel my work life is more focused and at the end of the day, I feel accomplished. I’m so excited about my results that I want to share the plan I’ve implemented.

I began by looking through papers to get rid of what was completed. This gave me a sense of accomplishment from the start. Next, I organized files so that each project has its own folder. Before, I had one big pile that left me feeling tired just by looking at it, so this helped a lot.

Once I was rid of the clutter, I found a calendar that fit my needs. I prefer one with month-at-a-glance, then broken up by weeks, and a To Do section. I list items on the To Do list in order of priority, indicating how much time it will take to complete each task. I then enter each item from the list to the calendar with designated dates and time allotted.

The last few tips are sure to come in handy:
1. Don’t be too ambitious: only have a maximum of six things to accomplish per day.
2. Don’t get distracted -- if you have a deadline, don’t answer calls or respond to messages until you’re done.
3. When setting appointments outside of your office, schedule traveling time. Then call before leaving because your appointment might be running late, which can change your schedule.
4. Finally, make sure you cross off completed items from your To Do List; the items you have not completed carry over to the next day.

Hopefully you can benefit from this plan as much as I have - feel free to share any of your own organizing tips, too!

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