Tackle it Tuesday is the day to focus and power down on what you consider to be the most daunting task or overwhelming task on your maintenance task list today – this will bring a lot of momentum to the rest of your week when you complete it OR if you need more than one day to finish it you have more days and the opportunity to end the week with it being crossed of your to dos.

Let’s also focus on being organized and your “Tickler File”!

You might be asking what is a “Tickler File”?

Noun 1. tickler file – a file of memoranda or notices that remind of things to be done to be organized

The first time I heard of a “Ticker File” a potential client asked me to add them to my “Tickler File” for two weeks – I said OK! And like any good VA I researched what the heck that was – when I found out I created one right away and it has been my BEST and MOST used tool since!

This organization tool ROCKS and helps keep you from keeping it all in your head OR in 5,ooo different places on your desk!

 Tickler File
Get Organized:Tickler File items

What goes in a “Tickler File”?  The items you need are:

  • A 3 Ring Binder (I suggest using a FUN color or if a white one make a fun cover sheet to slide in pocket, you want it to motivate you)
  • Number Dividers (1-31) (I suggest you find the fun ones, I use the rainbow colored tabbed ones)
  • A pack of 3 holed punched lined paper
  • A 13 Pocket Divider Pouch (I suggest a fun one or one that matches your binder)

 

You can usually get all your “Tickler File” materials around $35 – we are happy to create one for you and include some organization & productivity motivation and send it to you for $45 + shipping, ORDER HERE

Now that you have your Tickler File – how do you set it up and use it?

The binder part of the Tickler File serves as your monthly task tracker, the divider tabs (1-31) go inside the binder indicating each day of the current month and they are daily task tracker portion of your Tickler File – the 13 pocket divider pouch will serve as your yearly task tracker portion of your Tickler File.
Once you have your dividers in your binder & you have labeled the tabs in the 13 pocket divider pouch with the months ie: Jan, Feb, March and so on… it is time to get started using your Tickler File.

Place one sheet of lined paper in each divider tab – this is where you will note your scheduled committed tasks for specific dates.  You will have one lined sheet of paper that will be considered your “traveling task tracker” for maintenance things to do like: groceries, order book X, clean up database – tasks that do not have a “due date” and you can continue to cross things off and add things to it – daily you will move this from one day to the next in your Tickler File.

To get started go through EVERYTHING you can find that are tasks and projects you have to do – add them to your “Tickler File” in the appropriate location (either in the current month under the appropriate day of the month or filed in the pocket associated with the month you are to handle it)  Note on the traveling page your maintenance tasks and your “Tickler File” is ready to use!

How do you handle tasks that just “pop up” and your Tickler File?  We all have clients/customers that call with something that HAS to get done and done RIGHT NOW – be-careful not to fall into their panic emotions (or continue to reenforce this treatment) – my favorite quote is “Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part.”  Not that I am mean but I have still keep commitments that I have made to other customers/clients – you must evaluate their request honestly and be sure you do not make anything else suffer or stress yourself….  Is it really an emergency?  How long will it take you (and be sure to be honest)?  Will any other commitments suffer? And let your “requesting” client know what you can and cannot do and see if you can work it out.  Then add it to your tickler file in the appropriate location.

At the end of the day, review your Tickler File – check your “scheduled tasks” page for that day, did those items get done? If not move them to tomorrow’s “scheduled tasks” page and plan to complete them FIRST.  Review the “traveling tasks” and make sure all you got done is crossed/marked out and move it to tomorrow so you can continue working on it.

Tips on using your Tickler File and Being Organized

  • You must create a habit and use your Tickler File Daily
  • You must have your daily agenda from your calendar emailed to you (the Google Calendar can be set to do this) and print it in the morning – place it in your Tickler File for that day so you can be sure you are managing your time wisely with everything in one place
  • You  must make detailed notes when you are “noting” a project or task to be done before adding it to your Tickler File (what is the project, contact person, contact phone number, due date, details on the actual project/task)
  • Be sure to cross things off/out when you complete them in your Tickler File – I like to use hi-lighters because they are colorful and bright!
  • Be sure to keep your “traveling task” list moving from day to day in your Tickler File – you will come to a time when you need to rewrite it because you have crossed so many things off or added more to the list you need more room and a clean sheet is refreshing.
  • You will want to stay away from Stickies for making notes for projects and tasks – it is too easy to put them everywhere/nowhere and not put the task in your Ticker File appropriately.

A Tickler File can help anyone!  If you have an employee, have them set one up as well.  Teaching them to use a Tickler File can assist them in staying up on company tasks and things to do.  You can review their Tickler File and be sure things are getting done.

Be organized think: Tickler File ~ Tickler File ~ Tickler File!

If you need any assistance with any part of your Tickler File please feel free to contact us!


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