Woman sitting at a desk by a window happily reviewing her routine tasks.

It’s a new year and I’ve decided my focus for 2023 is ‘simplicity’. One of my yearly January routines lends itself nicely to setting up a great foundation to accomplish just that. 

At the beginning of every year I find that I have to set up new files, folders, reports etc. Maybe you do this too? When I’m setting things up, instead of just copying what I’ve been doing, I take the opportunity to review what I did last year and notice if there is anything I can do to improve or simplify, if you will, the process for this year. This is a great time to stop doing things that are no longer needed and review if there is a better way to do the things that are.

Here are 4 examples of things that are often on autopilot (you do them so regularly that you don’t even think about it) that you may be able to upgrade: 

1. Systems

Systems could be things like your filing structure, how you send invoices or pay bills, your morning routine, or anything else that has specific, repeatable steps. Frequent tasks are a good starting point.

Slow down and review what you have (or don’t have) in place. Could a system you have in place be improved? Is it still needed? Are there places where you could implement systems to make your day run more smoothly? 

2. Meetings

Meetings are a great way to connect with team members on projects but when we’re not mindful about them they can end up taking over our days and making us feel unproductive. 

Consider the following when setting up your meetings for 2023. Are they still needed? Is the amount of time scheduled adequate? Could it be booked for a shorter amount of time? Does the frequency of recurring meetings still make sense? Are there places where you don’t have regular meetings booked that would be beneficial if you did? 

What about meeting notes? Are you taking them? If so, are they clear, helpful, and easy for everyone to access?

3. Reports

I can’t think of a job that I’ve worked that doesn’t have some sort of report that needs to be done as part of it. 

When running your reports this month ask yourself, is there a way they can be simplified? Could part or all of the report generation be automated? Is there a more efficient process you could implement for running them? Are they still needed at all? 

4. Technology

Technology is ever changing and the tech you use can have a big impact on your day, especially when it’s not working for you. 

Make time to take stock of your technology. Are you paying for something you no longer use?  Could you be using what you have better? Have you taken time to learn about any improvements that have been made over the past year? Could you implement it in more places? Has some of it become redundant?

I encourage you to take time this month to slow down as you do your routine tasks, think about what you’re doing, and notice what you could be doing more efficiently. It doesn’t take much extra time and when you make updates now it will end up saving you time over the year. January works well for this process but this is truly something that can be done any time. 

Let’s get organized! Questions to ask yourself when reviewing routine tasks for 2023:

  • Is it still needed?
  • Is there a better way to do it?
  • Should I put something in place?
3 Questions to ask yourself when reviewing routine tasks for 2023. Is it still needed? Is there a better way to do it Should I put something in place?

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