One of the questions I often get is: What is your most essential productivity tool? Hands down, the most important thing I do every week is my weekly review. I absolutely cannot function without giving some focused attention to what’s coming up over the next seven days.
In this post, I’ll explain why doing a weekly review is a great investment for you and I’ll walk you through my own weekly review routine.
Why should you invest 30 minutes every week in a weekly review?
The short answer is that you will be more effective and take action more efficiently in the week to come. Truth be told, there are a lot more benefits from weekly review. My main benefit is decreased stress. I am a very visual person—I need to see what’s coming at me so I can know how to prepare. Far and away, the most effective way of visualizing my coming week is to construct a mind map of the week ahead.
Second, a weekly review allows you to interact with your life in an unique way. Rather than just checking on your schedule, you’re actually handling and gaining familiarity with each item. For example, if I’ve got a media appearance coming up, I don’t just note that I’ve got an interview on Wednesday. I also check that I have the right phone number, I review the interviewer’s bio, and make note of the questions I think she’ll ask. It’s an almost kinesthetic experience for me, in part because I’m fully present to each event before it happens! This kind of mindfulness also invites a reverence toward each event—keeping in mind that all time is precious—and that by bringing sincerity and devotion to my days, I am acknowledging the divine in every moment. That, my dearest, is soul-full productivity!
Finally, you will gain great benefits. Part of being a Sexy + Soul-full woman is being centered, bold, and confident. Those attributes are much easier to embody when you know what’s coming up and you’re able to prepare in advance. Moreover, you can take advantage of unexpected opportunities because you know what’s already on your plate (but don’t forget to practice saying “no” with love and courage!).
How to Do a Weekly Review
Creating your own weekly review routine is simple.
- Choose your day and time. I prefer Sunday mornings, after church, when I’m in a reverent prayerful mindset. This also helps me keep love in mind as my highest priority throughout my weekly review.
- Create a simple mind map. You can hand-draw a map like the one you see here or you can use software like MindManager or MindMeister. For my mind map, I like to have a node for each day of the week plus a “This Week” and a “Coming Up.”
- Open your calendar, your journal, and/or your task management list.
- For This Week, note the big rocks that don’t necessarily have a day associated with them. For me, these are projects like product development, drafting an essay for an upcoming book by another author, and important client work. If needed, I allocate space in my schedule to undertake these important actions.
- For each day of the coming week, note the big rocks or important events. I like to assign tasks to particular days like “Write Thursday’s blog post.” I also use shorthand like “Admin + EMQ” tells me that I need to handle administrative tasks and email correspondence on a given day.
- In the space for “Coming Up,” I add big ticket items that are more than a week away but that I want to keep “on my radar,” so to speak. This is a huge anxiety reducer for me because I never worry than I’m going to forget or overlook an important coming deadline.
As the week unfolds, I use my weekly review mind map as a compass to keep me headed in the right direction. This is especially important if I’m experiencing anxiety, having insomnia, or feeling overwhelmed. My mind map acts like an anchor to keep me firmly attached to the present moment and reminds me that love is my highest priority. I exercise faith and trust by relying on my map, which I made when I was at peace (some spiritual writers call this a state of “consolation”).
Get out your calendar and schedule your first weekly review. You only need about 30 minutes! Look for a space in your schedule when you know you’ll be relaxed and have a positive mindset.
Join me live on Periscope on Mondays at 9:30 am PT (12:30 pm ET) for more Sexy + Soul-full productivity advice and how to live a heart-centered lifestyle. You can see replays on Katch.me/tararodden anytime!