Everyone needs a little inspiration at work once in awhile.
Whether you have the best job on the planet, work for yourself, are starting your own business, (or all of the above!) you probably need a little boost or nudge to get yourself moving sometimes.
We all do.
Have you been feeling a little robotic, bored, maybe apathetic at work? No matter what your situation, regaining that energy and interest in where you spend the majority of your day is CRUCIAL for you to succeed (and find meaning in what you do).
Why spend the day doing something that is just kinda-sorta okay?
Find Art In Your Work
One way I keep myself inspired throughout the day — whether I’m writing a blog post for my own site, or putting together a product release schedule for LKR is by surrounding myself with items that I love. For me – it’s all about WHERE I’m working, the TOOLS I’m using, and how they all look and feel to me.
Allow everyday items that you may take for granted to keep you excited about work.
Many of the items I use regularly–even down to my macbook pro, the pens, the notepads all ended up in my office because I love the look and feel of them. Each object is beautiful to me.
Beauty is inspiring.
But beyond all my little beautiful little gadgets, there’s one thing that I get really excited about and usually gives me the push I need.
It’s All In The Plan
Now, people (my husband) say I’m addicted to planners, calendars, Filofaxes…scheduling devices of any kind. Yes it’s true. In fact, I say, why do any schedule unless you can enjoy it and it’s a beautiful process?
I even get a little giddy when I’m using something that fits my mood–the way it looks, feels, how it was created, everything leads me to plan my day better and with more energy.
Here are my favorite planning tools RIGHT NOW – some are not so green, but they are gorgeous and make me feel productive even before I start doing my best work.
Get Inspired At Work With Scheduling Offline
1. Life is Messy Planners from Mayi Carles at the Heartmade blog, just make me happy. Not only are they incredibly useful and fun to use, but they are BEAUTIFUL. They are girly, whimsical, and I break them out when I’m creating something out of nothing. I usually use them for my personal work.
2. Charlie Gilkey’s – Premium Planners will have you getting down to business fast. For some reason every time I print these out, I think, “I better get this project planned out because Charlie’s watching.” At the top of every page is a question or directive that sets you in motion and gets you making a clear plan right away. These are great for brainstorming too – there’s a year-long planner, a quarterly planner, monthly planners, and an even blog content planner…so you can laser focus or look at the big picture.
3. Recent find: The Like There’s No Tomorrow Planner Pad from bobsyouruncle.com – is at my side from the start of the day. It’s always nice to have an actual written list of what you have to do throughout the day. I’ve started blocking out the hours I work on different projects – and it’s helped me stay focused instead of hopping back and forth like a maniac.
The retro look of the planner pad immediately spoke to me. I KNEW I had to have it when I saw it on the shelf at the Container Store. It feels utilitarian and practical but still has that creative edge that gives me just a little skip in my step (haha I AM SUCH A GEEK!).
4. I blame Laura Roeder for introducing me to the Desk-It weekly calendar from Poketo. Not sure why, but it makes me feel like I’m using an extension of my mac. It’s sleek, easy, and sits right at the bottom of my laptop – so I can easily sketch out the week or add any last minute items. Sometimes I just need to see the week laid out in front of me and this helps me keep an eye that the week doesn’t get too crazy! I put meetings, appointments, anything I’m apt to forget for work on this calendar.
Greener Solutions That Inspire Action
Want something a little greener for planning and scheduling? Some I use more than others, but these are definitely good ole standbys when I’m not at home and need something I can access online from wherever I am.
Wrike and Google calendar are the main online planners I use every single day.
Check out: 5 Productivity Tools To Get You Out Of The Office Now
Break The Cycle
So, yes, it looks like I love calendars a lot.
I do not use them all at once or every single day (except google calendar and wrike). I break these bad boys out when I need extra push or want a written reminder posted on my white board.
I don’t just sit at my desk filling in planners all day long.
So, now find tools like the planners I've mentioned to get you inspired, you may forget to work! It’s easy to get lost in pretty schedules and making plans for the future.
Warning: If you find yourself playing with your planner all day long, choose 1 item on that list or schedule that you can handle right away. Don’t hesitate. Just do it.
It’s fun to plan – I know. It makes you feel like you are accomplishing so much, mostly because you have to see yourself going through each step of the process. So, in some ways you are experiencing the task or the item on your list before you do it.
Again – Take action on the next thing in your schedule to break the cycle of over planning.
It’s as simple as that.
Charlie Gilkey says
I’m not sure how I missed this post, Anne, but I really appreciate it. And, yes, I am watching.
The second you tweeted that I was downloading my planners! Thank you thank you. Just the push I needed today to set some projects in motion.