Can you relate to this cartoon?
Are you inundated with to do’s, tasks and projects?
Are you in a tumult trying to find that email, that idea, that …. Thing?
Do you get, as my friend calls it, sick pit, that awful feeling in the pit of your stomach when you think about all the things you have on your plate(s)?
I hear you. I get you.
Tracking to do’s, reminding yourself of who owes what information to which email, remembering if you’ve remembered to respond or if that person owes you an email is exhausting.
Feeling organized and sorted is a blissful feeling … IF you don’t have to spend a huge chunk of your days working at getting there.
If you can sync your needs with the right tech tool, then you can swim off into the sunset.
One of my superpowers is being organized. Like really organized. Like impressively organized.
Corralling the flotsam and jetsam in my head makes me feel on top of things so that I can get on with serving clients, designing and delivering game-changing workshops etc.
Annnnd my business has taken a leap recently (yeah!) and I knew when I was feeling messy, disorganized, stressed and clearly not on top of things that I had outgrown my carefully honed system. I was overwhelmed with a capital O.
So what’s a gal to do? Six things in fact.
- I mapped my current suite of tools; I made a list of what tech tools I was currently using and for what.
- Then I tracked my pain points; I made notes on what wasn’t working
- With as much detail as possible, I brainstormed what I needed my new system to do. Here’s what I was looking for:
- Able to sort by task, tags, due dates
- A list feature
- Shareable, for example with my Virtual Assistant
- Syncable with Gmail and Google Cal
- Ideally compatible with Siri
- Can set reminders
- Can drag and drop
- Then I had a discovery session with Amber de la Garza, a productivity expert, where the above really helped me to get clear with her about where I was struggling and where I needed to get to.
- Sanity in sight, thanks to Amber, I found a solution.
- As much as I wanted to be up and running right away with my new solution, I knew that wasn’t practical so I saved myself some grief by deliberately making time to learn and practice the new tool.
Sweet baby Jesus on a bicycle! Sanity was restored with the fabulous feeling of being on top of things once more.
So what was the tool she recommended?
Before I tell you I have a few caveats to share:
- It’s tradeoff time; when you outgrow your current to do/ task management system, it’s because you’ve grown (yeah!) and when you’ve grown it generally means you need more features and that means a tool that’s a tad more complicated to learn BUT that suits your needs better.
- Generally speaking, the more features a tech tool has, the more time it takes to learn it.
- While the tool I’ll share with you below works like a dream for me, it’s based on my pain points so it may or may not work for you. Go through steps 1-6 above and you may come up with an entirely different tool. Which is great! Your system should be custom fit to you.
So what is the sanity saver tool I’m now using that Amber suggested? The tool is called ClickUp.
ClickUp isn’t the easiest tool to learn. If your bar is to be up and running with a new tool in 5-10 minutes, this tool is decidedly not for you.
But if you’re willing to put in some time to learn it, ahhhhh can you hear the angels singing?!
I also learned I don’t know what I don’t know. While checklists weren’t on my list of things I was looking for, ClickUp has that feature. It’s a game-changer. Now when I enter a new client into ClickUp I use a specific checklist I’ve created so I can immediately tell where we’re at with contracting, delivery of services, follow-up etc.
So sweet. So sublime.
If you’ve outgrown your task management, to do and/or project management system check out the steps above and find some relief that’s custom fit for you.
Now go on and learn, laugh and lead.
- I know tech tools can literally make you feel snowed under, but laughs are in sight.
- Track your pain points, what you need and be deliberate and strategic about trying a new tool. Now go forth and conquer those pain points.