Monthly Setup and Review

Monthly Setup and Review

A thorough Monthly Review is key for my planning system. I do a thorough Weekly Review as well, but the Monthly Review has two indispensable benefits:

  1. It gives me a Big Picture look at what I accomplished during the month, which keeps me motivated to continue moving forward.
  2. It helps me to catch any tasks I didn’t complete that I may have missed during the Weekly Reviews.

I do my Monthly Review while doing the setup for the upcoming month. This way, I can immediately migrate any unfinished tasks. I explain in the video below how I do a Monthly Setup and Review. I’ve also listed the steps below the video for those of you who may want to try this method for yourselves.

My steps for a monthly review/upcoming month setup:

  1. Prep the upcoming month booklet. For me, this means moving my Yearly Chart from the prior month booklet into the upcoming month booklet, inserting my DIYFish Monthly Calendar & Chart, inserting the upcoming week’s schedule (DIYFish v3s3, currently), and adding a tip-in for the weekly task list. (Having the weekly task list as a tip-in allows me to see it at the same time as my daily pages.)
  2. Migrate dates from my forward planning calendar onto the upcoming monthly calendar. I also check the shared family calendar (digital) for Mike’s schedule and anything else I may have missed.
  3. Migrate any applicable bill due dates from my financial planner pages onto the monthly calendar.
  4. Browse through prior month’s pages and index anything that I may have missed during the weekly reviews. These are only things to which I may need to refer at a later date; if it’s important enough, I snap a picture and upload it to Evernote.
  5. Migrate any incomplete tasks from the prior month to the proper place. If it needs to be done immediately, it goes on the upcoming week’s task list. If it just needs to be done sometime during the upcoming month, it goes on the monthly task list. If I’m not sure where to put it, it goes on The Big List (which gets reviewed every week, so things don’t fall through the cracks). (Full Disclosure: things do still fall through the cracks. I am human.) 🙂
  6. Check The Big List and all project pages for tasks that can be completed this month. I add these tasks to either the monthly or weekly task list, depending on when I want or need to complete them.
  7. Process all items tabbed with page flags. I use page flags to indicate notes and tasks that need to be processed, meaning that they need to go somewhere else (onto a list or project page, into my writing notebook, etc.).

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