Trello and Why I Use It Everyday

As a Virtual Assistant I always have a long lists of tasks to complete. Whether it’s for clients, my business or my life. The list is always ongoing and ever changing.

I recently posted an article about the Eisenhower Matrix Principle and how I go about prioritizing each task. Today I’m going to go over how I use Trello to stay on top of my tasks after determining their importance.

First though, here is a list of the many reasons I love Trello:

  1. It’s clean and simple
  2. Easy to learn
  3. Drag and Drop (everything!)
  4. Use colored tags to break up tasks visually
  5. Add due dates and checklists within tasks
  6. Upload documents, images, articles to reference or use later
  7. Choose a background image that is visually appealing
  8. Have separate boards if needed (I currently use 2 boards)
  9. Use Power Ups to add even more functionality to your board
  10. It integrates with A LOT of other online systems
  11. Their blog and tips are always super helpful

So….What is Trello?

Trello is an online productivity platform that allows you to create lists with tasks (on what they call cards). You can use the board solo or to collaborate. You can add descriptions, tags, due dates, comments, checklists, and more to each card.

How much does it cost?

Trello has a free forever plan! Depending on your level of need this plan can likely be all that you will ever need. As your team and or needs grow you can always upgrade to the Business or Enterprise plans.

You can sign up here!

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Creating Task Lists using the Eisenhower Matrix

One of the key ingredients to productivity is having systems in place and sticking to them. If you currently run your day always reacting to what is happening and don’t plan out what needs to get done, my guess is, you usually don’t feel like you accomplished much by the end of they day.

Am I on the right track?

I hear all the time from clients that it feels like a waste of time to write out everything they need to do or plan their tasks for the day because they never stick to them anyway. In reality, flying by the seat of your pants each day probably means that less of the long-term tasks get completed because you’re always just focused on the “right now” tasks that may not always fit into your big picture goals.

The Eisenhower Matrix

The Eisenhower Matrix (or Eisenhower Box) is a very simple but effective system to organize your tasks and stay productive.

It is named after Dwight D. Eisenhower, the 34th President of the United States who was in office from 1953 until 1961. President Eisenhower had to make a lot of tough decisions before and during his time in office and used this principle to help him decide what to focus on each day. His principles can still be used today to help us decide on urgency and importance.

The Eisenhower matrix works by breaking down tasks into 4 quadrants by important, not important, urgent, and not urgent. These quadrants help you determine whether or not to DO, DECIDE (when to do), DELEGATE, DON’T DO.

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Why I Make a “Word of the Year” instead of a Resolution

You know when……

The New Year rolls around and everyone starts asking you what your New Year’s Resolution will be. What do you want to change about yourself in the next year?

You quickly think of something general to say like “eat healthier” or “go to the gym more” because those are things you should be more concerned about, right? But you know that despite all your good intentions (or no intentions) that you won’t stick to those or any resolution for that matter.

Sound familiar?

According to Brain Statistic about 41% of Americans usually make a New Year’s Resolution and of that 41 %, only 9% feel they are successful in achieving their resolution. A whopping 42% feel like they flat out fail in achieving their resolution every year.

So let’s put some numbers to this. Say we have 1,000 people that would mean that 410 of them decided to make a New Year’s Resolution. Of those 410, only 37 would feel that they actually achieved their resolution. Seems about right.

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Why I Love LastPass

It’s one of my favorite online tools! Seriously. It’s like GPS to the modern era, where you think, “What did I do before this?”

Before LastPass I ……

  • used the same password for everything because it was the one I had memorized
  • stored new passwords I was forced to create in the notes app on my phone (not safe!)
  • and constantly forgot those new passwords forcing me to re-set them and start the cycle all over again

With LastPass I…..

  • Have stronger passwords
  • Use different passwords for different sites
  • Have a secure place to store sensitive information
  • Only have to remember 1 password!

It’s become my #1 time saving tool and everything I ever wanted.

Let me list the ways in which it saves me time.

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3 Steps to Gain More Time in Your Day

This quote from John C Maxwell has changed my perspective on time management a bit:

Time management is an oxymoron. Time is beyond our control, and the clock keeps ticking regardless of how we lead our lives. Priority management is the answer to maximizing the time we have.

With that in mind, here are 3 practical steps you can take to stay organized and feel like you’ve gained more time in your day.

1. Make a daily list.

Either the night before or first thing in the morning, write down (yes, write down, don’t keep it all in your head!) everything you need to get done. I would suggest even putting them into categories like:

  • Must get done
  • Should get done
  • Could get done/Can be done tomorrow
  • Want to do

Don’t skip that last one! It’s important to build things into your day that you want to do as well as need to do. And sometimes what you want to do and what you must do can be the same thing, which is even better!

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