Image of Calendar with text saying How Video Editors Stay Productive

Thursday 6:24PM.

There are 4 things I’ve blown off doing this afternoon/evening that were marked on my calendar. That’s a problem. A calendar should be a sacred thing. Something shouldn’t go on your calendar if it can move. Once you put it on your calendar you execute whatever it is no matter what.

It stems from me not doing my weekly review this past Sunday or the Sunday before then for that matter.

The first thing on my calendar for this afternoon was to do my weekly review, even though it’s not Sunday. I know that the weekly review is my way of getting organized mentally and digitally for the upcoming week. Without it…not much gets done. I’m lost. There are too many uncompleted tasks sitting in the tool I use to organize everything. My calendar is as strong as a wet paper towel.

Okay, so what’s a weekly review? Without going too far into the weeds, I roughly follow the “Getting Things Done” method of productivity/organization. And the tool I use to organize it all is called OmniFocus. I have both the desktop and mobile version because I’m a psycho.

Basically anything I want to get done in my life, with my freelance clients, with my side projects, with EVF, podcast episodes, trips I want to take, projects around the house, errands around town, etc. … all that is structured in OmniFocus. It’s broken down into different projects. Projects are broken down into tasks. Each tasks has a context like “at home” or “on my iMac” or “errands” or “with wife”. And the tasks have reminder dates and some of them have due dates.

When running on full steam, I’m a productivity machine.

via GIPHY

However it’s really gosh darn difficult keeping it all up-to-date. When too much time passes without reassessing everything too many tasks and projects are available to work on and what is important to do gets lost in the midst of the unimportant.

To fight that each Sunday I [attempt to] do my weekly review. This is where I assess each project and the tasks associated with them. Do I want to defer them another couple weeks and not see them come up in my list of tasks I could be doing? Do I need to make new projects for new things that came up during the week? This takes some time — probably about an hour. But it’s a rough hour. It’s an hour where I need to concentrate, have my calendar open, have my various email inboxes open, and just grind.

Lately my stupid lizard brain has been getting the best of me. Convincing me that other things are more important than sitting down and organizing this vast list of projects. Even though I know that this method has brought me so much success and benefits over the years of using it, I still resist from time to time.

Even now my lizard brain is having me write this post instead of doing the thing I need to be doing. But hey, at least I got this post written, right?

Anyway, this whole thing wasn’t a pitch for Getting Things Done or OmniFocus or anything like that. I hope you’re able to take away from this that we all fight what we know is good for us. That even the most productive of us still battle with bouts of non-productive spurts. There are no easy fixes or silver bullets. Discipline is how you beat it.

Okay one last thing since the words are flowing so well.

I’ve been listening to this ridiculously interesting book called Atomic Habits. I’m about a third of the way through it but it’s giving me a ton of ideas of how to make discipline easier. So the resistance I’m feeling towards not wanting to do this weekly review can be parried with some mindset shifts and habit modifications. Anyway, I’ll report back with any findings.

Sorry this wasn’t much about video editing but if you’re a creative professional like me juggling a million things I hope you were able to get something from this.

Until next time,
Josh

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