The Monday memes are ubiquitous. Everyone is hatin’ on Monday. Why? Because it’s the end of the weekend and the beginning of the work week.
So, why do I LOVE Mondays? I think it’s because I am never happier than when I feel organized, and Monday is the day I organize the rest of my week.
You can start to love Mondays, too!
Think of Monday as a clean slate or a blank sheet of really awesome paper.
First thing Monday morning I grab a steaming cup of coffee, two colored pens and a notebook and head to my desk positively bubbling over with thoughts to pour out on the paper.
Tip 1: I start with my weekly To-Do list.
I’m one of those annoying people who like to write in two colors, partly because I just think black ink is boring but mostly because the list is easier to read if I alternate the colors. I don’t try to organize this first week-long list into any sort of order. I just let the future tasks flow off the end of the pen. They have to get out of my head.
And, I include EVERYTHING I know that I have to do, down to specific phone calls I want to make.
Tip 2: Prioritize
Once I have the weekly list fleshed out, I usually recharge my java juice and then sit down and number each task based on priority. What needs to be done first? What can wait?
For this exercise, I use a pencil, because as I go along I often change my mind about the importance of one task over another.
Tip 3: I create daily To-Do lists.
Prioritization allows me to write effective daily To-Do lists.
Each list gets its own sheet of paper and day/date at the top. Monday, naturally, begins the same every time: #1 ORGANIZE THE WEEK. After that, I break up the prioritized weekly list across the days.
Most of the time, my most important tasks of the week are listed on Monday and Tuesday. However, there are times when a top priority has a place towards the end of the week. It could be because I know that a client will only be available to talk on Thursday. And, sometimes it’s just too hard to fit ALL my top priorities into one or two days. It may be easier to spread those out for the first tasks of each day and fill in the rest of the day with lower-priority tasks.
It’s all about what works best for you in the long run.
Also, be sure you leave some empty slots on your daily lists. No matter how thorough your agenda, things always seem to pop up that need to be added as the week goes by. Stay a little flexible.
Are your daily lists too long? If you find that you are consistently unable to finish your daily tasks, you may be trying to cram too much into your day or you may have too many high priorities listed on those days. Wiggle some of your tasks around and see if that helps you get more accomplished.
Do you have other tips for making Mondays great? Share them in the comments! I’ll gather them into a compilation post and give you credit.