Find a way that works for you!
I am not a natural planner, but I understand that it can help me manage my life and work better, and avoid stress.
I admire people who make long, elaborate to-do lists to encompass every aspect of their life and then consistently work through the tasks systematically, at a steady pace.
If I even attempt a to-do list, I tend to either miss half the tasks, lose it halfway through or abandon it altogether in favour of anything else.
But I need to work with the way the world goes, and things generally need a bit of forethought and management to avoid descent in to chaos.
A particularly useful tool for me is this little week at a glance pad. A stocking filler from last Christmas, I initially ignored but have come to love.
Every Sunday I work out the week ahead. Because this is me, I only include the key things:
A) the book I plan to read to reach my 52 books in 2018 challenge and a guide for number of pages I need to read each day to finish it,
B) the meals we plan to have
C) events or appointments on each day of the week
D) 3 or 4 other tasks to achieve such as call insurance company, buy card for Joe's birthday.
I then have a similar system for work, on my outlook calendar.
For me to pre-plan that much is more than I can usually keep true to. So some weeks, I don't achieve a single one of those tasks, whereas other weeks I might get 3 done. Importantly, for essential tasks, I work as much as possible 2-3 weeks in advance of the deadline to give myself lee-way.
The message I wanted to convey though is that by having them there, visible and few in number, I have dramatically improved the likelihood they are completed, and nudged my unplanned nature more in-line with a way that works with the way we live.