When it comes to organizing my workflow as a blogger, I spent a few days at the beginning of this year to find templates that will help me to work more efficiently. I’m hosting most of my work files on Google Drive so these are always available when I’m traveling and using my laptop instead of a desk computer and keep my schedule in check by keeping all the important stuff in Google Calendar.
As it turned out, there are all sorts of ready to go templates specifically designed for Google Sheets. The ones I found particularly useful are from Smart Sheet. These are 100% free, you just need to create a copy of the template on your Google Drive, customize it a bit for your preferences and you are ready to go!
I used this website to download the following Google Sheets templates:
This template looks much more organized and neatly designed than the DIY one I used for years. Since that’s the spreadsheet I use the most in my day to day, I figured having a cute template will motivate me to be even more productive.
I love the layout of the template and that it allows to see the financial progress and calculate in one place all transactions. Previously I used the template that comes with Excel but that one had too many bugs that I didn’t know how to fix, and this template looks a bit more user-friendly.
One of the resolutions I set up for myself in 2018 (and miserably failed at) was to follow-up with people. I did some process in that department, but I felt the need to improve more. So, I downloaded this template with the single goal of reminding myself to follow-up timely on my emails.
This template is an elevated version of a to-do list where you can set-up deadline reminders. This template is especially handy for bloggers and other creatives who need to stay on top of their deadlines and plan ahead. In this template, you can also calculate how many hours you spent on each particular task – this will give you a better understanding of how productive you are with your time.
Even though this template is designed for online store managers, I use it to keep track of beauty samples I receive. That way, I can stay on top of all the new product launches and report to you guys when the new product is launched or goes on sale.
The list of invoices sent, and payments received. This spreadsheet helps to understand when invoices are due and when (if needed) to send payment reminders.
How to Organize Your Workflow
One of the things that I learned in 2018 is that traditional “put your to-do list as notifications on Google Calendar” approach doesn’t work for bloggers. We just have too much going on and having an over-floating calendar schedule feels too overwhelming and frankly destroy your creative juices floating. I tried putting all the reminders on my calendar and failed miserably, but the method I describe below truly works for me. I hope it’s handy for you too.
To implement my organizing technique, you will need a Google Calendar and a planner that has both monthly and daily graphs, together with a “to-do” section for each day. The idea is to have all the events and appointments on your Google Calendar and save the Planner for your to-do items.
I also use the Task app for my phone to save non-work-related to-dos like reminders to call a vet or pick-up a dry cleaning. These are the tasks that have no specific date in mind, so I just have a glance on them when I’m heading out of the house and have a spare moment to run a task or two.
For instance, if I’m heading to the event, I will pick up a package that I want to mail and spend a few moments before commuting to my event to drop it off the post office. I will not write this task down as it’s not a set-in-stone event. For instance, if it took me too long to get ready for the event, I will drop the package off later that day, while walking with my dog. That way, I still keep track of everyday tasks but schedule them around my to-do list and don’t let them overwhelm my schedule as these are not priority items on my list.
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There you have it: a complete breakdown of all the techniques I use to organize my life as a blogger. I hope you found some helpful tips and were able to create your own handy spreadsheets to manage your life in a more efficient way. Please let me know in the comments which topic about blogging as a career would you like me to cover next?