Most individuals might stand to be extra organized, particularly these of us working from residence and/or operating a enterprise. Fortunately, all of us have entry to Google Calendar. It’s free, can sync with different calendars and productiveness apps like Trello or Notion, and is comparatively simple to make use of. Transcend handwritten to-do lists; here is methods to use Google Calendar to plan your week.
Arrange Your Week
Many individuals use calendar apps to maintain observe of appointments or Zoom calls. That’s advantageous, however there’s rather more you are able to do. Utilizing Google’s Calendar app as a planner, you’ll be able to:
Make digital to-do lists
Create occasions and duties
You may as well add extensions to develop its performance. Some are aesthetic, like those that allow you to set a background picture(Opens in a brand new window) or choose colours past the usual ones Google gives for shade coding. Others can combine with video-conferencing apps like Be part of.me(Opens in a brand new window) and BlueJeans(Opens in a brand new window).
Make Process Lists, Calendars, and Classes
Earlier than creating your schedule, ask your self what you normally do. It sounds easy, however writing down common duties and essential gadgets, reminiscent of conferences, will provide help to get a greater sense of methods to handle your time. You can begin by creating a listing of to-dos.
Katrina Oko-Odoi, Content material Advertising Supervisor for CRM agency Copper, recommends(Opens in a brand new window) that folks “assume in each the lengthy and quick time period. File tasks or duties that you’re going to want to finish, even if you happen to need not get them carried out at present and even this week. For bigger tasks, attempt to break them down into actionable steps. This can make it simpler to plot time in your calendar.”
You may make your checklist utilizing different productiveness apps linked to Google Calendar, or simply use Google Duties(Opens in a brand new window) to maintain it easy. Duties is accessible from any Google Workspace app, reminiscent of Drive, Calendar, or Preserve. Click on the blue checkmark icon on the right-hand menu bar to entry it.
Use Duties to jot down a listing of the issues you already know you’ll should do all through the week in no explicit order. When you’re carried out, click on and drag them as new duties to particular days in your calendar. For instance, if you already know you need to block time for train in the course of the week, you’ll be able to create a process known as “train,” then drag it to the specified day and time.
Group duties by checklist so it’s simpler to maintain observe of them. You may, for instance, make a listing known as “chores” the place you retain common family to-dos, or “life admin” for issues like checking e mail and scheduling appointments. If you’d like the liberty so as to add and set up duties from anyplace in your browser, try extensions just like the Tasksboard app for Chrome(Opens in a brand new window).
Google Calendar additionally means that you can create separate calendars for various features of your life. You possibly can have a calendar for work and one for private occasions, populated with duties related to every class. For those who’re utilizing your calendar primarily for work, strive making a calendar for essential conferences, one for mission deadlines, and one other for work occasions to maintain your work life extra organized. Particular calendars will be toggled on and off from the left-hand sidebar.
To make a brand new calendar, click on the plus (+) icon subsequent to the Different Calendar part within the lower-left nook, then select Create new calendar. Add a reputation for the calendar, write an outline, and assign an proprietor (if a number of individuals are utilizing the identical Google account).
Add to Your Calendar
Including new duties, occasions, or reminders to your calendar is simple. Click on and drag on the precise day you’d like so as to add one thing and a brand new field will pop up the place you’ll be able to fill within the specifics. Or, simply click on the Create button subsequent to the massive plus signal within the upper-left nook.
If you wish to set a process to repeat, click on the time for that process the place it says Doesn’t repeat. A drop-down menu will open with a spread of choices you’ll be able to select to repeat the duty. Relying on the to-do merchandise, you’ll be able to set it to repeat day by day, weekly, month-to-month, or on a selected day of the week. You may set a time to your train process, and it will present up each week going ahead.
Coloration-coding your schedule may appear pointless, nevertheless it helps maintain issues straight so it doesn’t get overwhelming. While you create a brand new process or occasion, you’ll see a round shade icon that defaults to blue. Click on it to alter the colour that exhibits up in your calendar.
Don’t just like the choices you see? When you’ve got the extension for extra colours(Opens in a brand new window) put in, click on the plus icon within the shade field and insert a hex worth from Google’s shade picker(Opens in a brand new window).
Greatest Practices for Weekly Planning
When filling in your schedule, Oko-Odoi recommends including “non-negotiables” first. These are appointments, conferences, and different occasions that should happen on a selected time and day. You possibly can then fill in different essential factors out of your to-do checklist, pulling them from Google Duties or another linked app or extension.
Begin with an important gadgets, blocking sufficient time so that you don’t rush or get overwhelmed with too many duties in sooner or later. For those who’re engaged on one thing significantly dense, attempt to break it up into time blocks over a number of days. Experiment with each forms of time blocking to get a really feel for what you want, then run with it.
Productiveness YouTuber Jules Acree, for instance, has sure days marked off as “potato days” on her calendar whereas others are labeled “creation days.” On “potato days,” Acree handles enhancing duties and different to-dos that don’t require being on digital camera or trying fancy. Creation days are for filming movies and/or taking conferences.
Advisable by Our Editors
To create labels like she has for every day, merely add an occasion that lasts your entire day to your calendar and label it as such. Acree additionally shade codes deadlines in shiny yellow in order that they stand out—which is especially helpful for freelancers assigning their very own work schedule. If you wish to see her break down her organizational philosophy additional, try the video above.
Ensure you construct in time for breaks. Working for 5 hours straight would possibly look advantageous on paper, however you’ll be drained on the finish of it if you happen to do not take a second to step again once in a while. The reminders operate turns out to be useful right here—if you happen to’re the type of one who will get sucked into your work, strive scheduling stretch break reminders all through your work day.
Schedule blocks of time for calls, together with a couple of minutes to prep beforehand. That manner you’ll be able to decompress between duties and absolutely focus when it’s time to leap on that Zoom name. You possibly can name these blocks one thing like “prep time” and shade code them otherwise than the remaining.
Lastly, typically issues come up out of nowhere. When that occurs, you want time to take care of it. Attempt to put aside time simply in case you get an sudden name or have to leap to an unplanned process. Do this, and also you’ll nonetheless have the time and house to get your predominant to-dos within the can.
Attempt It for Your self
The extra you utilize Google Calendar, the simpler it turns into to prepare your week. Studying the ins and outs, reminiscent of sizzling key shortcuts(Opens in a brand new window), will assist make planning your days intuitive and easy. To recap, the fundamentals of planning your week with Google Calendar are:
Record out your duties and determine which of them are recurring
Categorize these duties
Create calendars for these classes
Fill in these calendars along with your duties
Coloration code gadgets by class
For those who aren’t certain this method is for you, strive it for every week to seek out out. Pull up Google Calendar, swap to week view, and skip to the next week. You may additionally want some further assist eliminating distractions, avoiding procrastination, and stopping fatigue to maintain up productiveness.
Fill in your deliberate weekly schedule and see how simple it’s to stay to your plan. For extra, try these Calendar suggestions and Google’s personal information(Opens in a brand new window).
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