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How to Create My Online Planner in 6 Steps

I’d like to share with you a tool that I use with many of my clients. It’s an online planner. It’s a great tool if you need help with visual auditory and kinesthetic learning. It helps with motivation time management and just a great visual to get you started.

Each month the first step in using this planner is to create a Google spreadsheet. If you don’t have an account with Google, go ahead and make one. Once you have that account, then you will need to have all of your subjects or goals ahead of time so that you can put them across the top of the Google Sheet.

Once you complete this, color code them and then move on to the days the week on the left side of the spreadsheet. You’re going to put in the month and then below the month if you spell out the day of the week. Use the numeric number for the month date and year. If you highlight that box and drag it down, it will automatically populate all the days of the month. Once you do that, go ahead and save the document for the purpose of this. You can just say your name and you can say academic planner or you can say your name with planning goals. So that’s step 1.

Step 2:

Have all of your assignments due dates, tests, projects ready. You can find these in your syllabus or instructor’s website. Once you have those due dates. Go ahead and backfill them in. Start with the end in mind. Put in the due dates on the particular date that it’s due and then go ahead and put in homework assignments and anything else.

Step 3:

Now you have all of the assignments in and the big tests. What I’d like you to do now is to go through those important test dates, presentations, project deadlines and use the paint bucket tool at the top of the Google spreadsheet. You can click on it and choose the color palette. I like to use red just as a reminder since it stands out that it is an important due date. Go ahead and use that tool and highlight the cell that that particular date is due and color code it red.

Step 4:

What I’d like to do here is start with the end in mind and backtrack to chunk down the steps. It’s going to help you to be ready for that test presentation or project and make sure you’re giving yourself ample time. I like to tell students if you think that you’re over planning and giving yourself too much time, it’s not really true. Because what you’re doing is building in a what-if plan. You know life happens and you might not be feeling well or you might not be motivated on a particular day. If you have enough planning blocks set for that specific test or important project, then you have a little buffer built-in. So, it’s a good idea to just over plan and break down these steps into kind of micro, small chunks of blocks

 Step 5:

You should have everything entered.  What I like to do now is to go through and just bold out the subjects across the top.  Make sure the dates are bold and then I put in anything red in bold too.  It is really visually standing out for an important thing for you know you need to do. This is where the students really visually like this calendar.  As you are completing an assignment, your accountability is to yourself by color, coding it using the paint bucket. Highlight the cell light blue as you complete things.   The goal is to have as much blue on that page as you can possibly get.

Sometimes students like to even put their test scores on there too so they can go back and look at it in a different month and see that progress. Another thing you can do is to use the strikethrough key for missed work. Maybe you missed an assignment you were going to do but want to track it, so you’re going to use the strikethrough tool at the top. It’ll serve the purpose of letting you know that it was something that didn’t happen. It may be something you forgot to do and other times, it might be professors moving things around or occasionally they just abandoned things.

So, now you have the color-coding blue for completion or the strike-through if it’s a special circumstance and just didn’t happen and red for important things. Sometimes things are not always done, but they’re in progress. So on that we’re going to use the yellow bucket tool and highlight those so that you know you paid attention to it you’re on track. Still, you’re not quite done with it yet and you need to go through using this color-coding system will really help you know at a glance where you are what you need to get done and what your next step is supposed to be.

Step 6:

Now you’ve completed one month’s worth of work. Add a new month at the bottom of the spreadsheet by hitting the plus button rename it for the particular month you want to  copy and paste your subjects at the top.   Use the date populated that I discussed on the first step and start all over again!

Best of luck out there.

If you have anything to share please feel free to reach out to me at www.razcoaching.com  or www. coachingacademics.com. [email protected] Or follow my www.Instagram.com/razcoaching. I do daily mini blogs with tips of inspiration. I post almost every day.  There’s something in there for you that can help you with your focus for the day.