I’ve experimented with various productivity life-hacks over the past many years, and one of the most helpful ones has been a weekly review.
In short, this involves scheduling a period of time, typically on a weekend, to overview the week and plan the upcoming one.
I’m sure different structures will work well for different people, but for the purpose of this email I’ll outline the process I use.
My review typically involves asking:
- What went well this week?
- What could be improved?
I then review my current task list. I cross off anything that I have done or is no longer relevant.
From the list, I will identify what are my priority tasks are for the upcoming week and rank them.
I’ll then roughly allocate each task to a period of time. For example, if I have a good stretch of time on Wednesday evening, then I would allocate that for my week’s key task.
I try not to spend too long on the above (I aim for < 1 hour), as it’s easy to let this kind of reflection drag on. However, I do see it as one of the most important periods of the week, and will spend longer if needed.
(Also, this weekly newsletter has in-part become an extension of this weekly review)
I find the weekly review increases my efficiency during the week, because I already know what I need to do and when. And if plans change, I know what my priority list is so can always return to that.
I don’t need to devote much time to doing “higher-level” thinking during the week and can effectively batch-process it on the weekends.
It also gives me a space to think of potential improvements to the approach I am taking in different areas of my life, and to assess the impact of those changes in approach.
If you decide to implement a weekly review, let me know how it goes :)