There are as many strategies on setting up and utilizing your Google Calendar as there are people. Some go crazy and color-code everything, others set up a reminder for everything in their lives, and there are some who just jot things down in a very approximate way. Since this year we are all about goal setting and productivity, I wanted to share my Google Calendar tips with you.
As many of you, I tried all sorts of strategies before but this simple and straight to the point calendar routine is the one that has been working the best for me. Hope these tips will help you to handle your Google Calendar in the most efficient way.
Google Calendar Set-up and Tactics
I used to have a million different calendars, color-coded and dedicated to each group of tasks and reminders. But at some point, I realized that it takes me longer to properly color-code my appointments than it actually saves time while planning my day. These days, I only have one calendar in use that to rule my entire life. If you look at the screenshot below, there are also “Reminders” and “Tasks” but these come automatically with Google Calendar and I don’t use them at all.
My Google Calendar Routine
I have a set routine for using my Google Calendar. When I go through my emails, I always have my Google Calendar open in a separate tab, so I can immediately see if I can commit to the event or meeting requested in the email. If the event sounds interesting and I would like to attend, I use a template saved in my Google Keep to RSVP (it’s connected to the new version of Google inbox, so you have your saved files available right in your email window).
Having an event RSVP template saves me so much time! Don’t be ashamed of having the same response to the same person who is inviting you to a few events – all they care is your answer, not your creativity in writing RSVP emails – so the same event acceptance answer will be just fine.
Once I RSVPed, I immediately put the event on my Google Calendar. I use the following tabs:
- Event Name – usually, just copy-paste the subject line from your event invite. If it’s a meeting, I will put “Meet [Person’s Name] // [Company Name]” for convenience. For instance, if I was planning on meeting myself, I would put “Meet Katya // @StyleSprinter.” Easy-peasy and straight to the point.
- Address – it’s crucial to have an event location on your calendar so you don’t search through your mail when you need to leave.
- Travel Time – when you have an address set in Google Calendar, it sends you notifications about traffic and when you need to leave the house to be on time. Super handy if you are struggling with punctuality.
- Notes – usually, I just copy-paste an entire email so I have a hostname and any additional event info (hashtags, product launch dates, etc.) in one place. This part is crucial if you are attending a lot of events. These notes will help you to feel prepared when you glance at your schedule the night before. And, again, save time as you don’t need to search through your inbox.
In addition to events and appointments, I have financial reminders on my Google Calendar. I pay all credit cards on the 25th of each month so I have a reminder 3 day before an actual due date. Once a Calendar reminder goes on, I immediately open my bank app and pay the card. If I happen to be on the event and didn’t have a chance to do so immediately, I will still open the app on my phone and will not close it until the transaction is done later in a day.
This year, I decided to set-up two additional financial reminders. One at the beginning of the month, when I go over my upcoming projects and see how my earnings look like at the moment. For instance, I might see that there are not enough projects coming my way, so I might need to reach out to the brands I worked with before for additional projects. Or, if it seems like I’m getting overwhelmed with upcoming projects, I will revise my events and meeting schedule and try to free more time for working on these projects.
At the end of each month, I set-up a reminder to go one more time through all my earnings and expenses of the month and analyze how I did this month. I will go over the Budget spreadsheet mentioned above and add any transactions that I might have missed. Also, I go through the Invoices spreadsheet and mark all the paid invoices for the month or, if needed, send invoice reminders.
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There you have it: my go-to tips for setting up and organizing my calendar for blogging. I hope these tips were handy and you learned a strategy or two about organizing your calendar. I wonder what are some of the strategies you use to set-up your calendar and reminders? Let’s discuss in the comments!