October is not off to a great start. I have been sick for pretty much the whole month, I missed a week of work, and probably more concerning, I did not make soap (or do much of anything in the lab) from September 29th through October 18th. I was a sick gal. I didn't get any blog content made or YouTube video editing, in fact I didn't do a lot of anything, and now that I'm feeling healthy it is kicking me in the butt.
Am I worried or stressed out? A little, but not to the point of panicking. Why? 'Cuz I have a plan. That plan is called The White Board List.
The White Board List has been part of the soap lab for about a year, but it really hasn't been put to constructive use. I'd write stuff on it, erase it, write new stuff in an endless cycle of Just Having a List. I felt I was doing something, or being goal oriented, just because I had a list. Really though, I was not meeting any of my goals, I was running loosey goosey through my days in the lab, and I couldn't find my desk in the office to save my life. We won't talk about all the things I was avoiding for other areas of my business, or the deadlines I was missing.
I hit a wall in August. A wall of exhaustion and frustration. A wall that looked a heck of a lot like the Hall of Shame. Something needed to change. My goals needed to be at the front of everything I do. I made a list of my goals, and then I made a list of what needed to be done in September to accomplish those things. I put that list on The White Board. Front and center every day.
I then took that back on track list from The White Board, and made a monthly checklist - If I do these things every month, during these weeks, the jobs are smaller, I'm not forgetting anything, and I will accomplish my goals.
September was a great month. I didn't get everything done on the list, but I made lots of progress. At the end of the month, I evaluated, decided what was important for October, and created a new list. That list is keeping me sane right now because all of the things I want to do are on that list, but not all of them are priorities. I can edit that list, wipe things off, change things when better ideas come along, but not lose sight of my big goals.
And that is why I'm not panicking now. My white board list and the monthly checklist are working together to keep me on task on focused. I know what needs to be done, what is priority and what can wait until the priorities are done.
How do you use lists? Or not use them? Do you have a system for running your business, or your household? And am I really the only person who happily nerds out talking about list management?
Stay Soapy Friends!