Templating your days

Yesterday we have been invited to a 30th birthday party in Ingolstadt, which got from 1 PM to 9 PM. This required me to travel 220 kilometers which took about 3 hours, which resulted in about 6 to 7 hours in the car without being any means of productive, because I had 4 people in the car, so I wouldn’t say, “Hey shut up, I want to listen to my audio book”. Also the 8 hours there, I couldn’t just sit into my car and work. I also don’t want to at this kind of days. To not fell like I suck and didn’t get anything, these days need special treatment. And that’s what this post is about. What a long intro.

There are more kind of these days, where you can’t find lots of time, to getting stuff done. So I thought about a way to create templates for different types of days. This post isn’t about the templates for each type of day, just about the idea, how to identify them and get the most out of it.

Yesterday I have written down a few template names, that came to my mind and I am sure, some of them are also relevant to you. They are either work or personal related:

  • Meeting Day
  • Driving Day
  • (Parents) Visit Day
  • Gym Day
  • Weekend
  • 4 hour day
  • Sick Day
  • Lazy Day
  • Writing Day

If you are relating to one of these days, you probably know, how many time you are going to have on that day. For example, let’s take the meeting day, my least favorite one.

If you are in a higher position, or working for yourself, I bet you know them. A full day, where your agenda is packed with meetings. Meetings can be useful, but they usually soak the energy out of you and interrupt you from important work. You could create a template, to make sure 2 hours before your first meetings starts, you are ready and sitting at your desk, to work on your most important task for that day, before getting your brain fried by meetings.

Even if you now spend 6 hours in a conference room talking about more or less useful stuff, you have gotten the important work out of the day. End this day with something like going to the gym, to balance out your all day sitting and you will feel better about that day, then before.

Another good example would be the visits day. Anytime I visit my parents I need about three hours to get there. Since I am always going by car, I cannot open my notebook or tablet and work on some tasks. Usually I am going to listen to my podcast list or an audio book. So at least I learn something new on the road. If I am spending more than a day at my parents, I can put in some work in the evening hours, which mostly results in some research for projects that I am working on. So I can end it easily and still have my work saved in Ulysses or Evernote.

Conclusion

Everyday is different, but most of them can be broken down to a template. By using daily templates it’s easier to stick to a plan and know in advance how you will handle the situation. If you need help scheduling your day or need ideas on what to do in a certain situation, drop me a comment, see you tomorrow!

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