Thursday, January 17, 2013

planning....what's your process?

Today I listened to a podcast about blogging and before the topic even began to be discussed, my mind was awhirl with ideas.

But as I began to think about my blogging plans - I also started thinking about how I process ideas.
When ideas start to flow, my first instinct is to grab a pencil and paper and sit down at my desk.
Then I remember that I always work better typing a list on my laptop.

So I sat and typed up a long list of blog topics, making bullet points and articulating specific ideas and steps to follow.
Now my head feels much clearer.

Something else that keeps me organized is having an ONGOING document called "Thoughts From Today."
It's just a place to hold random ideas and thoughts that might otherwise be lost.

Here's an excerpt that shows how random the ideas are, all piled together.
 
I keep this document (in Word) readily accessible by making a shortcut to it on my desktop.
When I think of something I want to remember, journal, scrapbook, a work idea, etc. - I pull it open and add it. Why do I keep it on the desktop? 
 
I used to get frustrated with the task of keeping my computer organized so I started keeping anything "pending" or "temporary" on my desktop. 
When I make a document or image that I either want to get to a lot or I know I will delete soon - I put it on my desktop. 
The beauty is.....most of them are deleted soon after and my computer stays organized.  
 
Here's a peek at my desktop. You'll see that I have some Silhouette files I created that I'm using for a class this week. Once the class is over...I will see them there and remember to delete them. (They aren't something I'll use again so they don't need to live in my computer forever.) Same goes for any image I right-click to save temporarily.

I love being able to stay organized with my thoughts and ideas.
I'm really working on "follow-through" this year. That means, not just wishing and hoping and thinking about what I want to do, but making goals and then listing step-by-step what I need to do to accomplish those goals.
 
What is your process for organizing your thoughts and how do you work best when you're in planning mode?
 

12 comments:

Briana Johnson said...

My process is very similar. I make a Page doc with Mac and save it to my desktop where things are subdivided into folders. SOme of those I feel good leaving there forever like JBS Mercantile Kit layouts - because those are things I go back to blog, to submit, to upload to two peas. Since I edit then drop the final pictures onto my desktop, then I just drop them into the folder. But back to Mac Pages - like Microsoft Word - I have Dec Proj Life Notes and Jan 2013 project life notes that lives on my desktop as I add to it. Crazy part will be that even after I get that info onto the pages, I still won't be able to delete that list from my computer.

TracieClaiborne said...

Yay! My blog's not broken! Thanks for stopping by!

Mary Pat Siehl said...

wow- so organized-- i don't have a process at all-- i make a project- either for myself or for a DT and then i move on -- i have a calendar on my desk that has my bog posts charted out because i have very specific dates that i have to reveal my work-- i have to keep those straight and i usually schedule those way in advance.

Crystal said...

I love how organized you are. I have no organization. My process is just put everything in front of me and get to work.

emily said...

I too have been working on putting my thoughts/goals into action this year. I like seeing others' organization ideas...it gets me motivated!

Lisa Echerd said...

Love this idea for a random though document on your desktop. My blog helps drive my process. "What have I not done and posted in awhile?" often motivates me. I'm also enjoying the '5 year journal' I found on Get It Scrapped. You answer one question a day. Takes just a minute.

Jann Gray said...

Great Post Tracie!

I use the "stickies" program (they are colored squares that look like the sticky note pads) on my Mac to record similar type things. Here are the stickies I currently have going:

Valentines Projects for YouTube
Books to Read
Manufacturers (new CHA products)
Blog Posts
Techniques I want to try
Denver (business trip details)
To Do Lists (1 for home, 1 for work, 1 for on-line classes)
Daily Something (this one I add a note to every day within a month)
Scrappable (just ideas or stories I want to scrap)

Love how you think...and love your desktop organization tip...so gonna borrow that as temporary stuff seems to stay PERMANENTLY on my computer!

Mary Jo Rhoda said...

I am so old school that I still do a lot of my planning in a small journal I bought at target! :)
I like the idea of keeping a file on your desktop though for easy access.
I also just added an Easy Notes app to my phone, so wondering if that will help as well.

LauraB whosthischick said...

I use a household planner and personal filofax with note paper and write it all down anytime it hits me.

Jennifer Grace said...

I like the idea of an ongoing word doc. My thoughts all get forgotten or written onto scraps of paper that get lost!

I do the same thing about putting files onto the desktop when I need to access them for short periods.

Barbara Eads said...

Being a retired, professional organizer, I'm all about keeping things in order. I have exactly 10 folders on my desktop. I even use the vanishing dock feature on my Mac so as not to have all those icons sitting around. I like to have a clean and clear view to my desktop picture. I, too, keep a running Word document of blog ideas and topics. Here's the problem: I have so many ideas that when I update my blog, I hardly ever get back to those older ideas. If I ever hit a dry spell, I'll have plenty to refer to.

Barbara Eads said...

I forgot to mention that I have an album set up in iPhoto called: "Blog Now" that I use to move the pictures in that I want to post. The pictures themselves are memory joggers for my posts. Plus, I have the added benefit of being able to go straight to this album when I'm writing a post and not having to search for photos.