How to Schedule Repeating Tasks

As the New Year starts, I thought it might be fun to talk about how to schedule repeating tasks — specifically, what yearly things do you do, or have built in to your year (month? quarter?) so that you can help stay on top of all the various tasks that build up, whether for your personal life, career development, job search, or more?

I think it all started with the “year in review” posts I’ve been doing here at Corporette for about five years now, as well as my attempt to keep on top of family photos from the past year enough to do a family calendar (also from the past 5 or 6 years or so). But the past few weeks this “review tic” has spread and I’ve been TRYING to sort way too many things lately, hoping the task will become a yearly one.  Lately my focus seems to be on drawers, and in the past week I’ve gone through my desk drawer, my makeup drawer, my sock drawer, my filing cabinets — all for the first time in a zillion years. I’m considering doing a brain dump of everything I’d *like* to sort through, then parsing them out into a few a month… but, well, I haven’t had time to do that yet.  I actually used to have a cleaning system that kind of worked like that — each month had a different “big” cleaning task (windows, blinds, duvet cover, etc) and it was all fine when I was doing it myself but I never seem to think about it since we’ve been using professional cleaners for a few years now… I should put it back on my to do list! (When I gear up for our taxes in a month or so I’ll do my yearly financial review of all the different subscriptions we’re paying for, since I tend to forget anything on autopayment. Oh, I’m also trying to get rid of a ton of bags we’ve had building up to donate and recycle old clothes…)

I’m sure that some of you guys must have even better systems, though, so I’d love to hear what you do — what do you do “every January”? Do you have different tasks for every month of the year? Do you only do big things like that (reorganizing drawers and the like) as they bug you? (What do you delegate, and to whom?) How do you organize regular review tasks like that in a way that doesn’t get overwhelming but keeps your life running as smoothly as you’d like it to?

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How to Organize Your Personal Email

how to organize your personal emailReaders, what are your tips on how to organize your personal email(s)? Do you use tools like Unroll.Me to keep clutter low, a ton of Gmail filters, or some other trick or hack? Do you practice a zero inbox policy with personal emails — and how do you keep from getting overwhelmed? (Psst: I know a lot of you use Outlook for work — have any great Outlook tips or hacks to share? We’re working on a separate post and will compile them all. Do you like to use a program like Outlook to handle personal email as well, or do you just visit the websites or use the apps?)

I’m totally overwhelmed myself, so I’m not sure I’m the best to share my tips and tricks — still, this is how I set up my various Gmail accounts (all four of them…)

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How to Keep Track of Work To-Dos

how to keep track of work to-dosHow do you keep track of different task items at work, readers? What are your best tips for how to keep track of work to-dos? Reader E wonders…

I would love a post on how people keep track of work to-dos. Do people write down their assignments on their calendars, keep a paper to do list? Some other system?

Great question, E! We’ve talked about different tools for time management, how to organize your office, as well as how to choose a great planner, and how to find a system like Getting Things Done, but I don’t think we’ve talked about how to keep track of different work to-dos. My own system is kind of simple (she said, preparing multiple bullet points) — OK, it’s not terribly simple, but it KIND of works for me. I could definitely improve, though, so I’m curious to hear what works for you guys!

Here’s the best ways I’ve found to keep track of work to-dos (and to-dos in general):

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Tips and Tricks to Spring Clean Your Office

tips and tricks to spring clean your officeDo you have a spring cleaning routine at home? Do you spring clean your office? I’m sure there are more “yes” answers to that first question. But no judgment here! After all, my office cleaning “routine” is typically something like, “Wow, how did all this dust get here? I guess it’s time to wipe it off!” We touched on office cleaning in our post on things to do in a quiet office a few months ago, but today we thought we’d share some tips and tricks to spring clean your office. (We’ve also talked about when an office is too messywhen to use cute office supplies and how to organize your office.)

Obviously, before you start to clean your office yourself, consider what’s already being done, such as work by a regular cleaning service at the office. You may want to coordinate the effort with them; for example, they may be able to sprinkle stuff on your carpets, vacuum vents, or dust blinds if they know the area will be clear. Depending on how strongly you feel about things, you may also want to ask them if they can give you a fresh trash can or recycle bin as well.

With that said, here are some tips and tricks to spring clean your office:

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How to Take Advantage of a Quiet Office at the Holidays

How to Take Advantage of a Quiet Office at the Holidays2017 Update: We still stand by this advice on how to take advantage of a quiet office during holidays, but you may also want to check out all of our posts on holiday business etiquette.

It’s coming: the dead period around the holidays when many of your coworkers are out on vacation, projects are done or winding down, and no one wants to start anything major before the end of the year. In late December, a quiet office can feel like a ghost town to people who are still there — but you can take advantage of it in many useful ways. What do you do when the office is quiet around the holidays and you’re still at work? 

We’ve rounded up several ideas of things to do in a quiet office:

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Closet Organization Hacks for Sweaters, Jewelry, Shoes, Bags, and More

Closet Organization HacksFor some reason I’ve been in a big mood to organize our closets, so I thought we’d discuss — what are your biggest pain points when it comes to closet organization? What solutions have you found that you love? What are your best closet organization hacks?

Pictured, clockwise: hanging necklace organizer / sweater bins / modular bag organizer / anti-tarnish zip bag for silver jewelry

 

Closet Organization Hacks That Are Working For Me:

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