One of the things I’m choosing this year is to be more productive. It’s hard to get into a routine since my days are all so different, so it’s been really hard to figure out the best way to be productive.
I have three things this year that are really helping me get stuff done. I have realized that I am all about extrinsic motivation. If I’m going to do something, I need to get something out of it.
The first thing I’m using is something I also used last year – Elise Blaha’s goal trackers. I use these to make my goals public and visible. I get to color in a little circle every time I accomplish something. It’s ridiculously satisfying to color in the circles, and to step back and see all the colored-in circles.
The next thing I’m using is my Get to Work Book, also from Elise Blaha. If you need some motivation, go check her out. She has incredible ideas and is a fantastic writer. It has taken me a while to figure out how to best use this book for me. I’m still figuring it out, actually.
Right now I’m using it to make daily to do lists in the daily sections. One thing I love about the planner is all the extra space for project ideas, little notes, and reflection.
I like using it for lists, but I’ve also seen some amazing ideas on the Instagram account. Once again, drawing a star on each of my to do items is ridiculously satisfying.
This last one is a new one. It’s an app called Forest. I set a timer in the app and if I don’t leave the app before the time is over, I get to grow a tree. Then all the trees are put into a forest. This app combines so many of my favorite things – trees, video games, extrinsic motivation, and pretty illustrations. I use it when I’m trying to get work done.
I also use it when I want to spend time playing with the kids without distraction. This has been the best part of it, honestly. When I have Forest set up, I don’t randomly check Instagram and Facebook. In the end I get a tree, and, even better, I know I have spent my time well.