How to make a daily schedule you can stick to (at least, mostly)


168. That’s how many hours we all have in a week. If you average 8 hours a night for sleep, it leaves you with 112 waking-hours. In that amount of time, you could do a lot of things. Like: make 12,320 vinyl records, quilt 5.5 quilts or read the entire Bible roughly 1.6 times.

My iCal schedule

Needless to say, we all have a lot of time in life. Yet, the most common complaint is, “There’s not enough time in the day.” I’m guilty of this complaint, and it is usually an excuse for poor planning. The issue at hand is that we don’t schedule and prioritize our time according to our life vision and goals.

It’s great to write out a life-vision and life-goals, but if they don’t translate into every-day-action, then they are useless.

When the way we spend our time reflects what we ultimately want to achieve in life, we don’t feel aimless and distracted, our morale is built up by a sense of achievement, and strain is reduced on our relationships.

I moved out of my parents’ house last weekend. It’s a great time for me to tweak my schedule and take an evaluating look at my life plans. It’s a good idea to make small tweaks to your schedule at least once a month.

While laying out my schedule, it forced me to evaluate which activities are really important to me. Once I prioritized my activities, I found my schedule to be full, but with gaping holes. How can this be? I laid out everything I wanted to do, but there was still tons of time open. 

The consequences of not planning your time:

  1. Life will seem tiresome (Eccl. 1:5-8).
  2. Life will seem unfulfilling (Eccl. 1:8b-9a).
  3. Life will seem uncontrollable (Eccl. 1:15).

The benefits of planning your time:

  1. Life will have focus.
  2. Life will be simplified (prioritized).
  3. Motivation will increase (achieving tasks increases motivation).

There are a lot of great tools out there to help you manage your time. Here are a few that I recommend:

  • iCal/Google Calender – The best calendar apps out there are iCal and Google Calendar. They can create events that repeat weekly and have multiple color-coded calendars. (For example, my home calendar is blue and involves things I do in my personal life, while my work calendar is green.)
  • 2Do for iPhone – This app is amazing. It’s the best to-do list app I’ve ever used. It can sync your tasks with iCal, created projects and checklists, and even have tasks repeat (great for newsletters, paying bills, etc.)
  • Day planner – Don’t own a good computer or a ‘smart phone’? There’s always the good ole fashioned pen and paper. While I haven’t used this method myself, I have heard others say they have planned their weeks this way for decades. Some prefer it over digital planners.
  • A few things to keep in mind:
    • If you can stick to your schedule at least 75% of the time you have made a huge success
    • Since it is your life you’re planning, it’s totally fine to deviate from the schedule and say, “forget learning Danish – I’m gonna go get a banana split!”

Similar posts:

Living Life Without Regret 

Choice by Choice

5 Reasons Why You Should Commit Your Goals to Writing, Michael Hyatt

Copyright © 2015 Evan and Sarah Olsen. Site by Evan Olsen.