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How to remember to do things!

Yesterday at The Business Woman’s Network we had a great talk from the fabulous Steve Clarke .

Notes had been taken and everyone was buzzing with ideas. But as I spoke with women afterwards and gave them some ideas on blogging,  a common theme arose – “How I am going to remember to do these things?”

Now business coach Mandie Holgate would probably suggest that some of them who were using the “not remembering” thing were procratinating. And she is probably right.

But when you are working, either running your own business or working for someone else, there are lots of thing to remember which means there are lots of things to forget.

Woman on two phones - Sometimes there is just too much going on

Sometimes there is just too much going on

So here are my tips on ways to remember – they are mostly techy ways (well I am an IT Fairy) but the “old methods” are good too!

Actually, it is just one tip but there are different ways of doing it so I feel justified in saying I’m giving you tips. Drum roll please…….

WRITE IT DOWN

Ok so you were expecting more. And so you’re not disappointed, here is some more.

When I say write it down, I don’t mean have a To-Do list. Far too many people have a To-List that they carefully craft everyday and at the end of the day there is hardly a dent in it as the list is been buried under whatever paper turned up on the desk or it’s been completely forgotten as other work came along.

When you write it down, put in your diary. Look at the task as an appointment  you must keep. I needed to book to my car in for a service. A letter from garage came last week and while I could have done it as soon as it arrived I knew that this week I would be catching up with lots of client and making appointments with them and so I want to keep my diary clear of the car service thing until today. So put calling the garage in my diary as a thing to do at 4pm today. And it’s now booked.

Now I do love my technology and so I use the calendar functionality in Outlook to keep track of my appointments. In fact I use it to send appointments to my husband (don’t worry, he’s in IT and it’s his preferred method) so he knows when there are things on at the school etc. It’s a good method because he can’t say I didn’t tell him as I can see when it left my computer and when he accepted it! Using Outlook like this means a reminder pops up on my screen.

But equally if you like a paper diary, then write in there when you are going to do things.

If you have a set time to do a task then you are much more likely to actually do it. (Unless you are someone who never looks at their diary in which case there probably isn’t much hope for you!)

There are also online systems and a variety of apps for iPhone, Androids, Blackberrys etc. I don’t intend to review any of them here but instead suggest you go to Google and search for  “Reminder Lists”

Now having said you need to put a time to do things, I am going to give you a non-time way for those things that are not so important and urgent but still need to remembered! Say it’s the end of the day and you suddenly have a idea for a blog but don’t have time to write it then (work-life balance is important) but equally you don’t want to forget this brilliant idea. Yes, if it’s that brilliant you probably won’t forget it, but who wants to lie awake at night thinking “I must remember that brilliant  idea”

Sticky Notes

Write it down!

In this situation, sticky notes are your friend!  If you love paper PostIt notes, then these are the thing for you.

In  Windows 7 , click the Start button and in the search box, type Sticky Notes. Click on Sticky Notes in the list of results and off you go. Simples. For a more detailed guide go to Using Sticky Notes

And Mac users, I haven’t forgot you  – see  How to Use Sticky Notes on a Mac |

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The IT Fairy
Clare is better known as the IT Fairy because the way she can make complicated things easy is simply magic.

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