Claire writes: “It was more than 20 years ago, that Mark Forster, author of Get Everything Done and Still Have Time to Play commented that the people who write time management books are the people who can already manage time well… and that those of us who struggle with managing our time also struggle to apply the whizzy solutions we read there.

I guess that I get better with time and necessity, but it’s not easy. The best tip I was ever given came from a colleague/friend who taught me about 1,4,8. Every week, I spend half an hour looking at my diary coming up:

  • 1 weeks ahead – will I be ready? what do I need to confirm, what bits do I need to bring together so that I’ll will have what I need on the day?
  • 4 weeks ahead – what do I need to prepare or write or check up on?
  • 8 weeks ahead – what do I need to start thinking about – what do I need to do about travel or accommodation or logins? What arrangements do I need to delegate?
  • And I add -1 week – what needs following up or learning from last week?

This means that every week gets looked at from 3 (or 4)different perspectives. It works for me – and it’s been interesting that I have shared it with a few people in the last few days – who have asked directly.

If you know this already, delete this! If it’s useful, feel free to make it your own.”

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