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Productivity Consultant at Organize For Success, LLC...
Helping You Make Every Minute Matter!



Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Does your calendar help you focus on your purpose?

January is "National Be On Purpose Month", which is further outlined at http://bit.ly/eCj4Ts, and I firmly believe your calendar solution can help you stay on the path of your selected purpose, especially when that tool is utilized to its fullest.

Many available calendar solutions walk you through how to select your own specific purpose, determining how you want to be remembered and what kind of footprint you'd like to leave on the people you know, the world you've lived in and the future of our society. Almost any Franklin Covey option, whether paper or electronic, is a great example of calendar solutions that enable future planning, mission / vision development and analysis of your personal or professional goals. Have you used any such tool for your own future planning and, if so, what level of success did you experience or do you recommend one tool over another?

Whether you've selected a paper or an electronic option, your calendar helps you see how much time is available each day and, then, allows you to determine how best to fill your available time. When faced with more than one appointment option occurring simultaneously, you have to deliberately determine which opportunity is more in alignment with your own specific purpose, making a conscious decision as to how you'll spend that available time. Do you have a clear purpose and, if so, what questions do you ask yourself when determining if an upcoming opportunity aligns with that purpose closely enough to be added to your calendar?

That same calendar solution often allows you to manage tasks on your to-do list. If you are using Outlook or another electronic calendar solution linked to your email, you can actually add the associated item to your to-do list as the email containing the action item request is received. If you are using certain paper or electronic calendar solutions, there are tools included for prioritizing such tasks on your to-do list. However, there are limited hours in each day, and one person can only complete a certain number of tasks, especially when intertwined with scheduled appointments. Do you delegate or discard tasks unrelated to your own specific purpose?

Still, enabling your selected calendar solution to be a tool in your staying on the path of your selected purpose depends on whether you take time to fully learn the bells and whistles of what that calendar solution offers and, then, keep the solution where you'll reference it frequently to fully utilize all of those available bells and whistles. Are you aware of all the options offered by your electronic calendar solution, like scheduling repetitions of activities at whatever might be your desired intervals, programming audio, text or email reminders of upcoming events / celebrations and easily updating directly from existing email applications? Are you aware of all the options offered by your paper calendar solution, like sections for meeting notes, built-in holiday notifications, areas for tracking expenses, auto service or medical records and references for toll-free numbers, weights and measurements?

Which calendar solution are you using for 2011 and how is it helping you stay on the path of your selected purpose?
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