Friday, 24 February 2012

Finding the right day for the weekly review

I spent a number of weeks when I first tried to make my review a truly weekly habit working out which day was best for my routine. Many people review on a Friday - clearing the decks and cleaning the system in time to enjoy a weekend free of work distractions. I tried this as my day for reviewing, but it somehow did not gel with me. So I tried a Thursday instead and had immediate success - the timing just felt right. I have been wondering about the reason for this and how my experience might aid others who might be struggling to make the review a habit.
  • Friday, for me, felt too late in the week perhaps because the nature of my work throws a large number of small tasks my way (as well as larger more involved projects). If I picked up on items during the review, I wanted to have the time and option of doing them before the end of the week. A review on Friday gave insufficient time for this
  • My energy levels often feel depleted by the end of the week - I wanted to give my review a good chance of being done properly and thoroughly
  • Urgent items to be completed before the weekend had a habit of shunting my review so that I either didn't do it at all, or only managed a part of it. I didn't get the full benefit of a complete review and the weekly clean and current feeling.

I can really recommend trying out different days and times (morning is best for me) to find something that really fits with your routine and energy.

With my review on a Thursday, I have ingrained the habit and am reaping real rewards. My system is more comfortable and complete and my intuition on what actions to choose is really keen. This is one habit that I intend to hold onto!

Sunday, 19 February 2012

The Power of the Weekly Review Habit

This week's review made me realise, once again, just how important and powerful the weekly review habit is. I had thought that I was keeping fairly well on top of things this week - all my lists were up to date, inboxes clear - but as I moved through the review I picked up on quite a number of items that were important but hadn't got into my system. I also spotted some important Waiting For items that weren't on my lists. If I hadn't stopped the world for an hour and reviewed my system I think a lot of these items might well have slipped through the cracks.

I have a reasonably solid system, which I trust, but a part of that trust is most certainly down to the weekly review and the uncanny ability that the process has to pick up on loose threads. If my reviews were more sporadic, I feel that the element of trust would be eroded and the safety net that the regular review provides would be rather holey. Building the habit each and every week has helped me to trust my system and fully take control of every area of my work with confidence.