Work-Life Balance is Dead, but this Organizing Hack can Help.

austen powers work life balanceWork-life balance is dead. Before you say, “I knew it” and give up, this time management hack can help prioritize your life and it’s many to-do’s.

How to start a personal Kanban board to get organized and STAY organized. 

This time last year, I resolved to get organized. 

Our Meetings department was down team members and I was kicking off the year with 16 simultaneous events, a demanding travel schedule, and a home life with three kids under the age of 6.

As I said my goodbyes to my dying pal ‘work-life balance’, I was resolute to find some way to get it all done and still stay married and employed.

I had just come off of completing my Certificate in Meeting Management (CMM), an MBA-level executive education program for meeting professionals, and was introduced to the personal Kanban board. This technique gives at-a-glance visibility into workload and status to optimize workflow and delivers value faster.

I did a trial run for a month following these steps:

personal kanban board trial run

  1. Research: I researched board images on Pinterest and merged a few to create the design that would work best for me.
  2. Create: I took 3 pieces of paper from a sticky easel pad and hung them on my wall in a horizontal line and titled them:
    1. “To-do” (with an additional 3 columns underneath)
      1. Low
      2. Medium
      3. High
    2. “In-progress”
    3. “Done”
  3. Categorize: I used the 4 post-it colors I had on hand and started to write out my tasks on the coordinating color:
    1. one color for a highly detailed event
    2. one for events in general
    3. one for my personal home tasks
    4. & the last for work miscellaneous
  4. Prioritize & get to it: I then sorted the individual post-it tasks by priority on my “To-do” page, panicked a little, and then got to work.

My make-shift personal Kanban board changed not only how I managed my time but helped me avoid taking on too much at once. My little easel paper then turned into an 8X4 glass magnetic whiteboard.

my personal kanban board

I was reborn a Kanban Evangelise. So transformed, I wrote my very first article on LinkedIn, which turned into an Event Planning Blog and then a full-blown entrepreneurial ambition. Amazing what you can accomplish when you take charge of your time management and are able to see the big picture.

Needless to say my list of to-do’s has not decreased in this New Year, but this organizing hack has kicked off my 2018 with one less cliché resolution. I am already well on my way to knowing what needs to be done, what needs to get delegated, and what I need to turn away.

sample personal kanban board

Ready to try it? Here’s what you need to start your own personal Kanban board:

  1. A “board” – This could be a bulletin board, a dry erase board, easel paper, or any blank wall. It certainly does not need to be as large as 8X4 or magnetic.
  2. Post-it’s – I now only use 3 colors. Yellow for my personal life. Pink for my blog & business. Turquoise for my full-time job.
  3. Washi-tape (optional) – Ok, this isn’t a need, but more of a fun addition to personalize and add some color when separating out your workflow sections.

Need some inspiration? Check out my Pinterest board and see how others have implemented this Kanban technique. Your 2019-self will thank you!

Already doing it? About to do it? Tell us about it and share a pic!

Eventfully, Angela

work life balance organzing hack

Angela Skeen Eventfully Angela

A Chicago native, Angela is a self-proclaimed event-geek and daily celebrator of just about anything. She currently resides with her husband and 3 kids in the Atlanta, Georgia area and has been the Sr. Meeting and Event Planner for Ingersoll Rand, a global Industrial Company, since 2009. She recently debuted her blog, Eventfully Angela, writing about industry tips and the overall musings of her eventfully crazy life as an event planner and beyond. She can also be found sharing event industry awesomeness on Instagram @eventfullyangela. Thoughts and views shared are her own.