Getting Organised | Tips and Tricks for 2020

I have a constant battle with to-do lists. I find a system that works, then I go to the extreme and start adding on more than I can hope to achieve and it becomes this stressful, overwhelming situation I can’t get out of. Then I change strategy and start it all over again.

This year, however, I want to focus on being productive but not attempting to achieve too much. I have no idea whether I can carry this off, but I figured that if I can at least try, it might get me through a few months, right?

To do list planner

I’m trying a few different techniques this year:

Pomodoro Technique

I discovered this last summer after getting increasingly frustrated with not feeling like I was utilising my weekends. For those who don’t know, this is a timed technique: I have mine set on the standard, which is 25 minutes focusing, 5 minutes off, repeating three times and then a longer break period. The idea is that your brain gets used to focusing for that timed session and you break down activities into how many sessions you think it will take and plan accordingly.

I’m still learning how to use this the best as I’m either setting too long or trying to break tasks down too much into the 25-minute slots. But even with not quite getting it right yet, it’s certainly working to stop me feeling like I’m wasting time when I know I want a productive day.

Laptop, calendar and bullet journal
Photo by STIL on Unsplash

Bullet journaling

I’ve wanted to have a proper bullet journal for ages but my lack of artistic skills means I’ve never tried it because I would want it to look pretty. I then bought some stencils – and have been having a great time with it.

I’m currently trying to figure out the best plan for me. I currently have monthly goals, then a weekly plan that breaks those down and then setting a few daily tasks to actually tackle the list. It’s helping me focus and work on bigger projects rather than a long list of not achieving much.

I’m finding that it’s therapeutic even just decorating it for the week, even if I haven’t got the task list quite right yet. Either way, it means it’s doing me some good.

Blog planning

This is where I’m struggling. I tried out and it seemed absolutely perfect, until I realised it wasn’t free and there was no way I was spending £22 a month. I’ve tried different spreadsheets as well which has helped – I find it easier than a hand-written one because I’m often chopping and changing.

I like having an overall monthly view and being able to list the posts for ease when I need to see more details. I’m currently trying to build a spreadsheet on excel to help me keep track – and plan ahead – but my excel skills are lacking so it’s proving problematic. If anyone has any planner suggestions, I’d love to hear them.

How do you keep yourself on task and organised?

A Rambling Reviewer

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39 thoughts on “Getting Organised | Tips and Tricks for 2020

  1. I tried the Pomodoro technique but it doesn’t work for me. I changed it a bit, now I work 50 minutes and then have a break for 10. I have to say, I get things done much faster now 😁

    Have you tried Trello? I use it for organizing my content and lots of other things. And it’s free!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It seems a little hit and miss for me – if I can’t focus it works just to make me do stuff but if I’m already in a productive mood it doesn’t work as well 😂

      Ooh no I haven’t. Thank you – I shall check that out!


  2. The Pomodoro technique works wonders for my adhd brain. Finally I get tasks done that would have lingered around for months before. I started it back in October and wouldn’t want to miss it 😁

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s fantastic! I dip in and out of it – if I’m feeling out of sorts and unfocused, it gets me moving, but other times I don’t need it in the same way. It’s great that it works so well for you!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ooo I never thought about using stencils! I have always wanted to bullet journal, but I’m just not a very good artist. But I’m also super picky, so I want it to actually look good. Stencils is a wonderful idea! Thanks!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Lol I love hand written lists. I try to make mine simple. Tasks with extra notes(mini tasks)
    Techniques are useful too but my focus time can vary during days but mainly stay within a range I set.
    Great post though.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s great that you’ve got the focus there. I have some times when I’m fine and other days where I just need that boost to get me going – normally at the weekends to be honest.


  5. I have never heard of Pomodoro technique – this is absolutely fascinating and such a great technique to make your time more productive. I really need to get my time organised this year too – good luck in reaching your goals xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • If I’m having an out of sorts day, I find it really hard to get going on anything productive, which is when I use the technique to get me going and then the mindset takes over. Good luck with yours too.


    • Me too – which is why it’s frustrating me that I can’t find the best way of actually planning it this year. I’ll get it sorted. It’s an interesting technique although not necessarily for everyone.


  6. I’m still working on getting organized. Right now I’m planning a week at a time. I post every other day. That, in and of itself, seems grueling to me. However, it’s the promoting that is all-encompassing.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Time management is the bane of my existence which can be hard for a perfectionist like me lol. I’ve never heard of the Pomodoro technique before but it makes sense and I might give it a go 🙂 Thanks for the tips!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I currently have an excel document but I don’t think I’ve got quite the right format yet because it’s not really working for me. Any excuse to buy more notebooks, aha!


  8. I cannot for the life of me do the Pomodoro method – my five-minute break always ends up becoming five hours. However, bullet journalling always makes me so much more productive – having a list and working through it piece by piece.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aha, fair enough. I can only do it because I’ve got an app that does the timing for me or I’d be a nightmare. I just have to make my lists achievable, that’s my problem, I get carried away!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Oh my goodness that would actually be amazing if it isn’t too much work!! I’ve got a spreadsheet but it’s so basic that it’s not really working because my excel knowledge is apparently rubbish!


  9. I’ve also experimented a bit with Pomodoro. I find it works best if I don’t make myself take a break, but give myself permission to take a 5 minute break every 25 minutes if I feel like it. No obligation, just being flexible with myself. I could take a ten minute break in an hour or just 5 minute break in 45—however I feel like it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s a really great way of doing it! It’s whatever works for you that helps you to feel productive and that you’ve made the best out of the day. For me, it just helps me focus when i’m feeling a bit all over the place and has stopped me having those wasted days.


  10. I’ve been planning my blog posts ahead of time (like months in advance) and using the batch writing method a bit. It’s been really helpful! Thanks for all the additional tips.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s a great idea doing them in batches – I might try and do some like that over this weekend to get me to where I want to be as I’ve got a few to catch up on. Thank you!


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