View Full Version : When do you do your weekly review?
08-24-2005, 05:27 PM
I have been doing my weekly review on Friday afternoon at the end of my work day at work and i just don't have the energy and it just doesn't get done. Place-wise I believe work is the best place to do it but I have been having trouble figuring out a day and time. I have weekends off.
What day of the week do you do your weekly review?
What time of day do you do it?
Where do you do it?
08-24-2005, 05:40 PM
I do the weekly review Thursday from 10:00am onwards. First few weeks it took 2-3 hours, now it is less than 1 hour (closer to 30 minutes). This is blocked on my calendar so as to safeguard my sanity.
Mini reviews can and have been done just about any day if the 'feeling' of missing something or of overwhelm.
Found that with this time period I can make calls or followup email prior to lunch.
Pick a day and time and try to make it a habit. May move the day / time until you can find a good fit. Of course there will be exceptions (offsite/training what ever) flow with it.
08-24-2005, 06:35 PM
Where do you do it? At work? If so, what kind of job do you have? I work in I.T. with a pretty busy day with lots of interruptions. I could solve this by doing it at home or after work but the context and energy level are just wrong at this time.
08-24-2005, 07:42 PM
I do my home weekly review on Saturdays or Sundays, depending on my schedule. I do my work weekly review Monday mornings.
08-25-2005, 01:16 AM
Here are some other related posts:
08-25-2005, 01:31 AM
Here (http://www.davidco.com/forum/showthread.php?t=3086) is a short discussion about the advantages of doing Weekly Reviews on Wednesdays.
I have been playing around (avoiding) the weekly review for over a year. I have tried mini-daily reviews, but did not capture more than the urgent. Tried the full review on Fridays, but too many fire-drills happen on Fridays and my energy level is pretty low then. Also tried doing this at home during the weekend (no interruptions), but I really did not have all the INs and resources to do a full dump. At the end I found myself doing it on Thursday monrings 730AM. This time gives me a full hour before interruptions start happening and gives me two days to re-prioritize before the end of the week.
08-25-2005, 05:54 AM
As a Pastor, the end of my week (Thursday-Sunday PM) is pretty full, so I do mine early Monday morning to ready me for the new week.
08-25-2005, 08:42 AM
I have been doing my weekly review on Friday afternoon at the end of my work day at work and i just don't have the energy and it just doesn't get done. Place-wise I believe work is the best place to do it but I have been having trouble figuring out a day and time.
You have defined your problem of time quite well. You need a time 1) when you are at work, and 2) when you have enough energy to do it. Only you can really know what that time is. You may have to experiment with some different times until you find one that works for you.
There is another solution, however, that may help you accomplish the objectives of your Weekly Review: to reduce the time and effort required to complete it. Three strategies can help you do this: 1) break the task into subtasks, 2) eliminate subtasks that aren't necessary, and 3) find tools and techniques to accomplish your objectives more easily.
The first strategy is classic problem-solving strategy of breaking a big problem into solvable subproblems. Lots of the activities of the Weekly Review described on pp. 185-187 can be done in different sessions.
For example, collecting and processing papers and notes can be done as required in shorter sessions throughout the week. I also collect ideas ("empty your head") mostly as they arrive, with the occasional short Mind Dump session that can be done whenever my mind is ready for it, not necessarily during the Weekly Review. Furthermore, I do mini-reviews most mornings (after coffee) and most evenings, checking off things I've done and reviewing Next Actions and Waiting For lists.
I once had a similar problem with housecleaning that was solved by breaking it into subproblems. I lived alone in my first 2 small apartments and cleaned them in one weekly session with speed-cleaning techniques, getting the whole place spotless in 30-45 minutes. However, when I married and moved into a much bigger house, that one session required 2-3 hours. I really hated devoting a big chunk of Saturday but didn't have the time or energy on weekday evenings. So I tried different strategies for breaking it down, starting with FlyLady-style routines. Those didn't work for me, either, so I figured out why and tried other strategies (5 or 6 different ones!) until I found one that works great for me. Now I do some cleaning most weekdays. I probably spend slightly more time than the one session, but my house is always clean and I never have to clean on my day off, leaving it free for other things. So I achieved my goal (a clean house) while also solving my problem (not enough time or energy to do it in one session).
The second strategy to make the Weekly Review easier is to eliminate unnecessary work. With the housecleaning problem, I realized I did not need to vacuum the guest room every week. If it ain't dirty, don't clean it. With respect to Weekly Review, I similarly decided not to review my Someday/Maybe list every week. My Someday/Maybe list is huge. Reviewing the whole thing takes a lot of time and is really not necessary every week since many of the items are pie-in-the-sky Maybes. So I broke those out to a separate list which rarely if ever needs review. (Maybe while I'm waiting in line or something.) I then review just the Someday list.
The third strategy to ease the Weekly Review is to find easier ways to achieve its objectives. The Weekly Review is so difficult for many to accomplish because of the effort required to maintain connections between Projects and Next Actions. Doing so only at the Weekly Review puts a huge, effortful load on your brain's short-term memory. This is a good thing to get out of your head. I highly recommend finding a method or tool to make this easier. Many have been discussed on this forum, including the PigPog method and Life Balance. I use Life Balance which ensures that I always have a Next Action defined for every project, effortlessly. This eliminates the difficult, time-consuming effort that keeps many from actually doing the Weekly Review. My brain is free for higher-level, creative planning and thinking.
Using a tool to achieve your goals more easily is analagous to another housecleaning problem I once faced. I was brought up to wash floors on my hands and knees. My mother still does it this way, taking one and a half hours each time and putting a lot of stress on her poor old knees. I decided to abandon this way in favor of a mop which gets the floor almost as clean in 10 minutes. Since it's so quick and easy, I do it whenever it needs it, which is generally every day. My mother does it only once a week since it is so difficult and time-consuming. So I spend about half the time, yet have a cleaner floor than my mother does a majority of the time (since floors don't stay clean very long, just like lists don't stay up-to-date very long).
These strategies may help you achieve the successful outcome of the Weekly Review. Good luck!
I do mine sunday evening. I find that on sundays I tend to be more relaxed from the time off, and I have a block of uninterupted time. I find it gets me ready for the week, and mondays aren't so bad anymore.
08-25-2005, 11:33 AM
David suggests Fridays so you can capture any loose ends from the week with it still fresh in your mind. That's reason enough, but if another day is less hectic, that is a good reason to use that day. I think it is useful to do it at your workplace. You obviously need to identify a timeslot with minimal interruptions and adequate mental energy. I think the first thing in the morning is a good bet for most people in most circumstances. If necessary, come in early that day to avoid interruptions. You know the atmosphere of your workplace better than I do. Maybe lunch-hour is a possibility. If you really can't get away from interruptions in your office at any time, would it be possible to move to a quite meeting room or even an offsite location? You can justify this by thinking of it as conducting a meeting with yourself.
08-25-2005, 02:00 PM
David suggests Fridays so you can capture any loose ends from the week with it still fresh in your mind.
Based on that I have been doing mine Friday Mornings first thing, I close the door and push... the results are incredible...
08-25-2005, 08:00 PM
I find that, thanks to GTD, all my loose ends are captured all the time. So I don't need to do it when they're fresh in my mind. In fact, reviewing my work at a distance helps me to separate the urgent from the important.
08-25-2005, 08:24 PM
I've been experimenting with doing a "rolling" weekly review, where like some others who have posted, I split the weekly review across multiple smaller sessions in order to get it done despite not always having a large enough block of time to get it done in a single sitting.
To track this, I have created an @WeeklyReview category, and have entered all elements of my Weekly Review Checklist into this category. I then assign an identical target date to several related items that I am likely to do in one sitting to groups of items.
The result? I usually am 100% squeaky-clean in terms of work items (inboxes, voicemail and email collected, processed, organized, work projects reviewed and next actions defined, Waiting For and Delegated items updated, etc.) by Friday afternoon, while other items, such as review of electronic items, such as my palm-based calendar, can be done anywhere, anytime during the week (then reset the target date to +7 days), and home items (including home office and home inbox) are done on Sundays.
Anyway, it works for me...as they say in the car ads, "your mileage may vary."
08-26-2005, 01:01 PM
I work Sunday-Thursday and find it's best to do my Weekly Review on Sunday. I work in a very interruption-driven environment and cannot in good conscience leave the work area for two hours at a time--my direct reports do frontline customer support and I'm their primary source of answers. Sunday is ridiculously slow and gives me a lot of uninterrupted time. It's also a time when people in the executive chain above me aren't around to drop the Most Recent Panic on me.
Works out nicely.
I tend to do mini-reviews throughout the week, as I feel I need them, but my main review is on Wednesday mornings... Mondays are much too mondayish, they tend to be hectic and filled with meetings, so that Tuesdays are frequently spent getting caught up with the aftermath of Monday. I started off reviewing on Fridays, but I quickly saw that wasn't going to work well for me -- many of our staff are on variable schedules, so they're frequently gone -- plus, after a long week, my energy level was a little lacking, and I was frequently either doing a poor job reviewing or was postponing it. Thursdays worked a whole lot better, but eventually I moved to first thing on Wednesdays -- my energy level is typically highest (equidistant between weekends, perhaps!?), plus it made followups with other staff easier, because there was enough lead time/flexibility for us to schedule in time before the weekend a bit more easily...