top of page

The Lever #010: How to Design Your Ideal Week

Updated: Mar 10

If you set some goals for 2023 you started your year right. But all goals need one thing to complete.


Today's issue looks at the best way to create space to do your best work.


Before we start:

How can you learn to juggle all the skills you need to succeed?

The secrets 2 Productivity Newsletter will help you get more done in less time. Unlock simple, actionable secrets you can use today to jumpstart your success.

Sign up today.


The Power of Routine

Getting things done takes time.

Every goal you’ve set, every task you want to complete. You need to take time to do it.

Long term goals, like writing a book or building a house take time that you return to again and again. If its important you do it every day.

If you don’t create a repeating time to work on the things you value, and only do them when you “feel like it”, then you are setting the stage for failure. This is why most people never fully achieve their goals. They state the intention, but don’t take the next step to create the space to actually do the work.

The best way to minimize the friction of starting is by creating repeating routines. Do the thing you said you’d do at the same time and same place. Every. Damn. Day.

And if you really want to see results then track those routines. Collect the data.

The greatest routine tracking tool ever created is the Calendar.

Your Ideal Week

You have a minimum of seven time slots in every day in which to build different routines.

Read about them here:

You can start simple, and create yourself a nice little morning routine. You’ll see results.

Or you can go all in, decide in advance what the ideal use of your time is, and work your calendar like a pro.

A fully time blocked calendar represents your ideal week. This is how you would spend your time while making sure to meet all obligations, and creating space for all of your goals.

Here is how to set it up in Google Calendar (the GOAT!)

NOTE - For each calendar entry you’ll be adding one of the following tags in the description:

#personal #professional #life #community #fitness #sleep

You’ll also choose a consistent color for each of those 6 categories.

I’ll explain why at the end ;)

Step 1 - Start with Sleep

Good sleep = great results.

The best way to get a great night’s sleep is to go to bed at the same time every night, stay in bed long enough to meet your sleep requirement, and wake up at the same time in the morning.

Create a block that starts at bedtime and ends at wake up. Then:

Finally, use the duplicate function to copy it to every day of the week.

Step 2 - Add a Weekly Review

The weekly review is one of the most powerful habits you can build.

Without the review you are just making a colorful calendar. With it you are opening a feedback loop that drives results. It’s your MOST important block of the week. Schedule it.

Step 3 - Existing Obligations

You may have recurring weekly appointments.

Ball games, meetings, the dentist.

Enter these next so you have full awareness of your available time.

These might be related to #personal, #professional, or one of the others. Set it up accordingly.

Step 4 - Focus on Yourself

We all have personal goals and aspirations. But hope is not a strategy. These things need TIME to complete.

Block some dedicated time to work on these, outside of office hours. These will usually fall sometime towards the beginning or end of the day, depending on your preference and energy levels. Maybe a short routine at lunch.

You can create more than one.

Step 5 - Focus on Fitness

Health is wealth.

A strong body leads to a strong mind. And like everything else, the best way to achieve this is through routine.

Schedule time 7 days/wk. Some weights, some cardio, some recovery. Not every day is a maximum effort. Take rest where needed. But start with no days off.

Aim to do something active every day.

Step 6 - Focus on Family

The #life tag is for two things:

If you have kids or a significant other than a lot of time needs to be scheduled to keep things running smoothly.

This is a big bucket, and is where you manage your relationships. Give it enough space.

Step 7 - Focus on Work

Finally, we get to the spot where everyone else starts from. This is on purpose.

Your work is valuable and important. But it is not more important than you, your health, or your family. Remember that.

To start, just block your entire workday into one big block. Don’t worry about capturing every little thing.

As time goes on and you get better at Time Blocking you’ll start creating individual blocks to manage your workday.

You might also create a “deep work” block where you tackle your Most Important Task of the day. Same time, same place.

Step 8 - Focus on Maintenance

This is the second part of the #life tag.

Life happens. You can be proactive about it and build in some time, or be reactive and have it totally throw off your schedule.

Your future self will thank you.