Like most reasonably organized small business owners, I have a to do list. Although I have a running tally of detailed tasks and projects listed on my computer, my weekly to do list is actually just a piece of paper printed out from Microsoft Word. My "weekly planning calendar" is a four-column seven-row Word table.
The first column has boxes for the date. Then I have columns for AM Activity, PM Activity, and Appointments/Calls. I evaluate the giant overall task list that lives on my computer in my contact management program (Chaos Intellect). Then I print out the Word document, and hand write in what I'm going to do each morning and afternoon into the table cells. It may sound mildly archaic, but it works. I think there's something sort of important about actually writing down the tasks by hand.
Plus my little Word document sits in front of my computer, so I always know what I'm supposed to be doing. I figure you can't always be looking at your contact management software on your computer, so it's easier to ignore than a piece of paper in front of your nose. Plus, as anyone who has ever used a contact manager can attest, when you load a lot of tasks into a contact manager, some of them never come back out. Yes, certain items on ye olde to do list get so ancient, they start to get cyber-mold on them.
The other day, I finally took one of those moldy oldies and moved it to my planning calendar. For months I have known that we really should have testimonials from our clients on our Web site, so it's been on the big to do list. This week, I finally did something about it. I'm so glad I did! It's really satisfying to get good feedback on your work. And the fact my enormous to do list is one (moldy) item shorter isn't a bad thing either ;-)