Ask Us Anything #1 - Podcast Episode 16
Have you wondered how we approach planning? Or what advice we give when we talk with friends about planning? Are you simply curious to know more about us?
For the final episode of this season of our podcast, we dive into questions we received from our community! They range from personal questions, to planner-related questions, to general productivity questions.
Join us for a laid back and fun conversation!
Time-Blocking Made Simple - Podcast Episode 15
Time-blocking is a powerful productivity tool for maximizing the amount of time you have available, and for liberating your time to focus on what matters most. Yet over the years of talking to women who use our planner (and others who have a heart for intentional living), we’ve found that many of people are intimidated by the concept of time-blocking, don’t know how to make it work for them, or simply feel like it’s just too structured and stiff.
We totally get this! No one wants to feel pressure to make their intuitive daily rhythms “work” on paper before they're "allowed" to move forward on them. No one wants to feel like there’s no flexibility for spontaneity, or to feel false-guilt when things don’t go “as planned.”
Thankfully, the way we approach time-blocking feels nothing like putting a straight-jacket on your day.
Identifying Your Productivity Season - Podcast Episode 14
Although productivity and time-management resources seldom address this reality, different seasons of life significantly affect your productivity in different ways. It can be easy to get caught up into thinking we should be able to plan and execute tasks regardless of what is happening around us, but this simply isn’t the case. Your productivity is going to fluctuate based on the season you find yourself in, and that's not a bad thing.
As we've studied our lives and others', we've come to identify three seasons of our productive lives. Everyone goes through these seasons (and it's possible to be in between seasons), but the key is to recognize each season early, and to understand and embrace the ways your current season will inevitably impact your productivity. In fact, knowing what season you're in and having clarity about the types of goals and tasks you should be focusing on in that season, is a key component to a sustainable time-management strategy.
Why You Need A Hub for Your Brain - Podcast Episode 13
A few years ago, I read this crazy statistic that shocked me. It said the average person spends 5,000 hours in their lifetime looking for misplaced items. Ladies, that's over 6 months solid spent feeling totally disorganized, simply trying to unblock your progress. I think the reason this hit me so hard was that I completely identified with this statistic. I knew it had to be accurate based on how I tended to feel in that season of my life. I also knew that this disorganized, fretful overwhelm was seriously holding me back from accomplishing the big goals I deeply cared about.
I realized I needed a hub for my brain—a one-stop home for #allthethings I was trying to juggle. I knew that if I could capture the important details of life in one place, then I could arrange the tasks I needed to do into my schedule, and my brain would have everything it needed to prioritize and stay intentional with my time. The Evergreen Planner was born out of this desire to finally feel truly organized.
Now, when I'm feeling spacey, I have a single place I can come back to in order to know what tasks I need to tackle next. This tool has saved me so much of the precious time that I used to waste spinning my wheels, and empowers me to be more present in my home, stay on top of my daily todos, and weekly make progress on those bigger goals and dreams that motivate me to stay intentional.
How to Build a Morning & Evening Rhythm - Podcast Episode 12
Effective yet flexible rhythms are one of the key building blocks in a sustainable and intentional lifestyle. But trying to copy a guru’s routine, whether for work or home life, quickly becomes overwhelming. There are dozens of “best practices” out there, so where do you start? How do you decide what you need in your personal rhythms?
Create a rhythm for your unique lifestyle
In this episode of the podcast, you'll get long look into how each of us approaches our morning and evening rhythms. Although we all have similar values—and we're even in similar stages of life—each of our rhythms look different.
Here's the thing about rhythms: they have to be crafted for your lifestyle, congruent with your season of life, and based on what you and your family value. I remember listening to a podcast years ago that said that "'should' is not a sustainable why." This idea holds true for rhythms. Feeling like you "should" get up before the kids, will not be a strong enough "why" when your alarm goes off at 6am. But if you begin to know in your core—because you've taken the time to reflect on your personal experience—that getting up before the kids sets you up for a better, more peaceful morning, this core knowing can easily become a very strong "why."
6 Tips to Get Out of the Crazy - Podcast Episode 11
When you are in an overwhelming season, it can be hard to know where to even begin. Crazy seasons can come out of nowhere, and often come from things outside of your control. But what we have found is that when you go back to the basics, and gently work on getting back to your life-giving rhythms, that there is always something you can do to relieve some of the pressure.
The steps below aren’t pie-in-the-sky ideas, these are the real steps we have each taken to bring more peace to the chaotic seasons we’ve been through.
How To Do Lists Hinder Your Productivity - Podcast Episode 10
We know the to-do list cycle all too well.
You have a hundred things rattling around in your brain, so you write out a massive list out on a piece of paper, and then jump into frenzied action.
But you feel like you're spinning your wheels, like you are working all the time, and still have so much to-do and can't get ahead of the to-do list that grows faster than you can manage.
The Problem with To-Do Lists
To-do lists tend to fragment your focus. Alone, they can never be the time-management strategy you need to organize your tasks within the context of your week. To-do lists encourage you to take action, but it is most often un-prioritized action, meaning you will never make progress on the things that actually matter most to you.
Quickstart Your Planning - Podcast Episode 9
You want to create a personalized time-management strategy and maximize your planner. But you're not sure where to start or how to keep making the space to figure it all out when you're still trying to juggle everything you already have on your to-do list.
If that sounds like you, then you're our people.
And you need the Quickstart Your Planning Guide (download for free at the bottom of this post).
About This Episode
If you listened to the first season of our podcast, you’ll remember our Four Rules of Planning. Those rules were a helpful start, but in the months after publishing those episodes we realized a couple of things...
First, we don’t like rules. We like planning strategies that are personalized to each individual, and rules can rarely accomplish that level of customization.
Second, we couldn’t easily remember the four rules… and we wrote them. We knew that wasn't going to work; we needed something easy to grasp that was memorable.
Setting ROOTED Goals: Developed by Providence
Last week, we talked about the secret sauce for making progress on your important goals— even when things change —by writing your goals down frequently, even daily, so you train your brain to care about your goal. This week, we're wrapping up the entire ROOTED goals system by talking about the most critical mindset you can have when setting and executing your goals.
Your goals must be Developed by Providence, the final step in the ROOTED goal setting system.
The Kingdom of God does not rise and fall by the successes and failures of our written goals. Knowing this gives us an incredible amount of liberty to simply follow the Lord's leading through the messy middle. Leading our lives with integrity and excellence is a deeply meaningful endeavor, and God loves to give us the grace to do that. Having a Christian growth-mindset allows us to set our goals with an "amen" posture towards God's unknown plans for the future, knowing that when we give our goals back to God, we can trust Him to develop them in the best of ways.
Setting ROOTED Goals: Etched into Your Memory
Last week, we talked about how to create a symbiotic relationship between your goals and your lifestyle so they mutually support each other over the long-haul. This week we're going to talk about the secret sauce for making progress on your important goals— even when things change. When you train your brain to care about your goals, your subconscious joins the team and starts looking for every reasonable opportunity for you to make progress.
We call this "etching" your goals into your memory, and it's step 5 in the ROOTED goals process.
Setting ROOTED Goals: Tailored to Your Lifestyle
Last week, we talked about how to make sure your goals are clear and actionable, so that you can make significant progress whenever you have the time. Today, we're going to talk about that time, about how to create a symbiotic relationship between your goals and your lifestyle so they mutually support each other over the long-haul.
Step 4 is all about how to Tailor Goals to Your Lifestyle.
Other goal setting systems might show you how to reverse-engineer your goal (what we talked about last week), but then they end there and wish you good luck. This system shows you how to look at your goal in the context of your daily life, and then make strategic shifts in your schedule in order to make space for this goal.
Setting ROOTED Goals: Outlined for Clarity
Last week, we discussed the importance of finding the overlap between your core calling goals, your starting point, and your deepest long-term priorities. It is in this intersection that we can find goals that are Organically Growing Out of Your Context—goals that make sense for you, where you are, today, and that act as a bridge to help you get to the next level.
This week, in step 3, we’ll be talking about how to Outline (“Reverse-Engineer”) Your Goal for Clarity.
Other goal setting systems will encourage you to outline your goal for clarity—and there’s a reason for this. Our brains crave step-by-step clarity. This phase is all about being specific about your goal and breaking it down into actionable steps.