The original Quo Vadis Agenda Planning Diary weekly format was created more than 60 years ago as a time management tool. That format is still in use in our Trinote, Septanote and Prenote weekly planners. These planners have time management features built directly into the pages: space for your day’s priority, categorized task lists, space for notes and recording information, and days timed to the half hour so you can see your entire schedule at a glance.
This post is the first in a series where I will show you specific ways to use our unique Quo Vadis weekly format to increase your productivity, set and reach your goals, and balance your schedule.
In this post I will give you tips on how to use your planner to help you focus your priorities and work your goals into your daily schedule.
Last year I wrote a post on The Difference Between Goals and Priorities, And How to Make Yours The Same. In that post I discussed how Goal tasks usually fall into the category of Important But Not Urgent, so it’s all too easy for them to get put off for things that are more urgent. In that post I also discuss the importance of assigning urgency to your goals to get you to prioritize them in your daily life.
I thought about how I could better use my planner to focus my priorities and reach my goals. I realized I had been using the priority boxes in my planner like this:
There’s nothing wrong with using the priority boxes for reminders of birthdays and bills due. But you can go a step higher and use the priority spaces to prioritize your goals.
(For help figuring out your goals, read this post for step by step tips on deciding your goals and working them into your schedule and this post to help you focus those goals into actionable tasks.)
Once you have decided your goals, make them your priority each day. Whether they are goals for achievement at work, personal growth, or improving relationships, decide what to focus on each day and write that day’s priority in the Priority box at the top of each day.
In this example I have used purple ink to signify social connections, blue for personal focus, and red for work goals.
By treating your goals as priorities and keeping them at the top of your day, you will acknowledge their importance, remind yourself why they have meaning for you, and encourage yourself to be mindful of these each day.
Writing your day’s priority seems like a small thing but it’s actually a very powerful way to get yourself to focus on your goals. Just the act of writing it makes you think about what your priority should be that day and gets you to make decisions about what is important to you. By doing this exercise every day you will teach yourself to decide what you want to focus on. The accumulation of your decisions day after day will take you in a certain direction.
Where do you want to go? Choose wisely! The choices you make day after day will take you on a journey. Make sure it’s the one you have consciously chosen.
Look for Part 2 in our Quo Vadis Productivity series here on Quo Vadis blog soon!