One creative project at a time
At university I learned that I can focus on one project at a time. If I had two essays due on the same day, I conserved energy by finishing one early before starting the second.
In my work I’m learning the same lesson again. When I try to do a bit of this and a bit of that, I spread myself thin, and spend too much time gearing up to switch tasks. When I have the freedom of focusing on one project at a time, I take it.
Using the ‘Today’s Focus’ Box in Passion Planner
For all the years I’ve been using a Passion Planner, I’d never felt confident about how to fill in that ‘Today’s Focus’ box at the top of each day.
I’ve landed on a system that excites me – and it’s pretty much as titled: Today’s Focus. Not a task, but a project. Let’s look at some examples.
At the weekend, I focus on either Adventure or Home. (Or planning, if I haven’t done this by the weekend). Assigning these ‘focuses’ help me see at a glance which day we’ll be in and which we’ll be out.
During the week, my daily focuses include:
- Recording audio and video
- Everyday Wonderland updates and launch prep
I have days for working on writing projects, days for recording a YouTube video (like the one below!), and days for focusing on the administrative side of Everyday Wonderland, and getting ready for the next launch cycle.
Grouping these thematic tasks together is more effective than working on them a little bit each day.
Plus, if I’m recording a video, I can take advantage of having all the equipment out. If I need to record audio for an Everyday Wonderland postcard, for example, it makes sense to do that at the same time.
Planning Around Snug the Dog
Each morning, Snug knows that I go out to a cafe while she naps. I come home for lunch and we keep each other company in the afternoon.
If I have an appointment outside the house in the afternoon, that’s a good day to fit in a morning recording.
On Everyday Wonderland prep days, I take her out for a big walk up Arthur’s Seat in the morning. Usually, I start my day with writing, but on admin days, I find a brisk walk to be a better venue for my thoughts.
While I’m in the Neighbourhood…
Another way I use the ‘Today’s Focus’ box is to indicate when I’m visiting a certain part of town. If I’m going to Stockbridge to check in at Golden Hare, where I’m the Blogger in Residence, my focus for the day is ‘Stockbridge’.
If anything else needs to get done while I’m out there, I’m reminded to fit it in. As I fit things into my weekly layout, this label reminds me of my whereabouts at a glance.
How to Use the ‘Today’s Focus’ Box in Passion Planner:
In this video, I give a tour of my weekly spread, and walk through my ‘Today’s Focus’ strategy in more detail.
Focus on one project at a time, and use the ‘Today’s Focus’ box in your Passion Planner to allocate your creative energy.
Be mindful of what makes you work better. What slows you down? How can you rearrange when and how you work to optimise your attention to projects?