Today I wanted to talk about a tool that has been working for me lately: the weekly review.
I learned it from my friend Alan Jacobs, who, like me, is unfussy about “productivity” tools. His only real task-management tool is a calendar, and he uses that calendar to schedule regular times for reviewing his notes. He says:
No, the tools don’t really matter to me, and I have learned not to fuss about them. What’s essential is scheduling time — I set aside an hour each Monday morning and a whole morning on or near the first of every month — to go over all of those notes and do a kind of self-assessment. I sit down with my notebook and my computer and ask: Where am I in my current projects? What did I accomplish last week? What do I need to think about further? Is there any research or reading I need to be doing? What should be my priorities this week (or this month)? That kind of thing.
I could have the best note-taking system in the world and I’d still be lost if I didn’t have regular periods for review and reflection.
The minute I heard Alan explain this I knew it was exactly what I was missing in my creative life.
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to Austin Kleon to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.