What are some of the tools you’re using to stay organized and on top of things this year? I shared this post last year, and while much has remained the same, I’m sharing what worked, what didn’t and what’s new for 2022. Here’s how and what I’m using to stay organized and on top of things this year.
✩ TANYA PATRICE ✩
PERSONAL & FAMILY STUFF
ONE+ I’m still using a paper calendar on the fridge attached with magnet hooks to track family activities, travel and appointments. The new addition from last year, this Small Dry Erase Whiteboard on the refrigerator, is still being used. We keep a running grocery list as we run out of stuff and a “To Do” for reminders of other things to do or to buy.
TWO+ I still use Google Calendar on my phone for personal appointments but I use CAL (Any.do) app as a widget to display appointments on my phone (just like how it looks). I rarely use it on the computer.
THREE+ New for this year is that I’m also using a paper Blue Sky Stay Chic planner for personal stuff. In this, I use the monthly calendar for tracking $$ – CC payments / balances – future Zwift events. There’s a “Notes” section to the right of the monthly calendar, and I put a habit tracker column here to track my Spanish study and supplements. There are some monthly calendars from 2021 and I’m re-purposing them to track a “to be read” list for reading challenges as well as the tv shows and movies I watch. My to-do list goes on the daily pages and I like that at then end of the week there’s a “List It Out” section – which is where I put my meal plans and a “Currently Loving” section at the bottom of the page, which is where I’m tracking my favorite things for the month (since I do a monthly faves column here on GXO). This planner doesn’t leave my bedside table – I take a picture if I’m going out and think I need to remember something from the planner.
FOUR+ Also new-ish Ordering groceries and grocery pickup. After the first few months last year, I stopped doing online grocery orders, however – I’m back at it! When I plan meals, it’s great to be able to put the items I need in my “online grocery cart” and also, it makes it easier to companion price the items. That doesn’t mean I don’t go into the supermarket, but I’m working my way to going in less and less.
FIVE+ Also still in effect – Automatic, paperless and online bill paying, and using banking apps and using eWallet to store passwords and account numbers for everything from drivers license numbers, car license plates, insurance information, Netflix login … errrvrrything.
SIX+ I’m not using Keep Notes much anymore. I will still use it to make a quick note if I’m on the go, but the info will be transferred to someplace else later. When I want to remember things like where I parked my car at the airport, I’ll text the info to the hubs. I figure it’s better that someone else also has the info too.
SEVEN+ I tried a few different systems last year, and ended on what I think is the best combo for me. A simple paper planner – monthly calendar to track travel dates; a daily section where I simply have my Top 1-3 “To Do’s” for the day; and the notes section in the back combined with sticky notes.
EIGHT+ My Outlook calendar has (almost) EVERYTHING else. I’m no longer just putting work meetings there. Anything that needs a follow-up or I need to work on goes on that calendar at a time slot for when I will do it. This is as simple as moving the email to the time on my calendar when I want to work on addressing it. Boom – done! I have a gazillion tasks that need to be managed everyday and writing it all down just wasn’t effective.
NINE+ I’m also using Microsoft Planner for 2 on-going year-long work streams that have specific steps that need to be accomplished for multiple locations, and I need to be able to see where I am in that process easily. I tried a habit tracker style which also worked, but I’m going to stick with Microsoft Planner for this year because it can track a few more things – like deadlines. I have reoccurring times blocked on my calendar to work on those work streams.
READING & WATCHING
TEN+ Im still using Goodreads and paying $9.99 / mth for Scrib’d in order to “borrow” audiobook and eBooks. I was a big library user, but had to give it up since I live in an unincorporated area – which means I have to pay some exorbitant amount of money to have access. I’m also on Netgalley to request advanced reader copies of books and using the Netgalley Shelf App to read (or listen to) the eBooks and audiobooks that I’ve gotten approved for.
ELEVEN+ I’ve also been using the Kindle app on my tablet a lot more. I subscribe to a few magazines digitally.
TWELVE+ Nothing has changed with this. Kim and I use Evernote to keep our blogging calendar, Feedly (app and website) to follow blogs and keep up with all your lovely updates and I’ve been using the WordPress app more and more to respond to comments, and work on posts without opening up the laptop.
THIRTEEN+ The virtual cycling and running platform, Zwift was a game-changer for me last year and I have a Garmin watch, which syncs activities to Garmin Connect along with a Stryd foot pod (for treadmill runs – syncs to Zwift and Garmin). I’m using the Strong App to track my weight training / stregth – also using the “Workouts” feature on Garmin mainly so I can sync it to Strava which is the platform I use to look at all the activities (I like the community feel of that platform). I’m no longer using Fitbod and I use the Peloton app every now and again.
FOURTEEN+ I’m still using FitRadio for music and sometimes their coached runs. I’ve started watching more Youtube videos during strength training workouts (which I do at home) and sometimes listen to Spotify.
That all seems like a lot now that it’s written down! What are some of the apps / things that you use everyday – and what are you tracking this year?