As promised, here's one of our favourite ways to stay motivated and on track in 2019.
Write It On Paper
With the advancement of technology we are bombarded with so much more information than ever before. To keep track of our to do’s, goals and more long term plans for life (if we even have time to think about that!) many of us have resorted to our phones to help us keep our brains straight and remind us of what’s coming up. Sarah and I started to realized that trusting yet another device wasn’t doing it for us. We wanted less screen time not more. It is a well known fact that screens can never replace the tactile experience we get when we touch paper. There is something about grabbing a pencil, a white sheet of paper and writing you thoughts down. So we decided to implement “Weekly Reviews”.
Every Sunday night, Sarah and I sit down at our kitchen table to take "inventory" of our week.
It includes the following sections:
What’s Not Working
What You’re Avoiding
We write down what our three main goals for the next 12 weeks will be. That's it. Only three. It can be anything important from getting healthier to spending more time with your kids. The goal is to decide what should be important to you in the short to mid term. If you need a guide to help you figure out what your goals should be, we break it down this way… One habit to form, one project to start, and then one miscellaneous.
Then below that, we proceed to do a brain download which means we write down everything that we can think of that either needs to get done or that we need to remember. Doing this helps with those sleepless and anxious nights as this process helps us with taking those worries off our brain. It's written down now, no need to keep worrying about it! After you’ve written everything down, look through your list and see if there’s anything small that can be done right then and there. It feels so good to scratch something off your list!
On to goal tasks! Take a minute to choose one actionable step that you can take the following week for each one of your goals. Your weekly goal tasks don’t have to be huge, the focus here is to make sure you’re doing something that will move you towards the end target.
The next part is my favorite. You write down your wins from that week. Include everything you can think of that has had a positive impact on you. From having a good coffee with a friend, to landing a contract. I have found this has helped me with my gratitude as I literally take inventory of all the things that went well last week. So healthy for the soul.
The next section includes two things, what’s not working and what you’re avoiding.
What’s not working is a great section to mindfully go through your week and take stock of what maybe didn’t work out so well and ask yourself what you can do about it. So for example, maybe you want to drink water first think when you wake up in the morning, but you just keep forgetting. A solution to that would be placing a water bottle beside your bed.
What You’re Avoiding… For some reason or another, we occasionally encounter things that we just want to make disappear. We have found that writing them down and then finding easy actionable steps to solve them is usually easier than we thought at first. You can take as long as you want on this, as long as you do something about it no matter how little. One step at a time and you'll get it done!
And finally, your values check-in. This is where you take a moment to check in and ask yourself if your life is aligning to your core values. So say one of your core values is relationship with your family - do you feel connected to your loved ones this week? Did you do anything that strengthened your relationship? You get the idea.
The cool thing about weekly reviews is that while you write down your shortcomings, it also allows you to prioritize the areas of your life that need the most work without feeling like you've failed. You didn't do a good job last week? You have a new week right at your door step.
There are a few other steps to a weekly review, but we don't want to write a novel! Here is a photo to show you what one of our weekly reviews looks like. If you want to learn more about how to do a weekly review, you can check out Muchelleb’s Youtube channel or read David Allens’ book “Getting things done”. We have learned a lot from these resources and adapted the information to better help us individually.
Let us know what you think below!
Manuel + Sarah