Monday, December 04, 2006

A Covean Revealed!


Witness the terrifying truth:
This summer, I bought Franklin Planner software. I've used the paper version before, but I had concluded that the software would be less expensive in the long run than having to keep buying refills, and I liked the idea of a "to do" list that carries forward. In most ways, it has met my expectations. There are a few things that I really like about paper, but I especially like having a planner I can't lose because it's on my computer.
I've enjoyed my inconsistent use of said software. When I hit my bottom of organizational entropy, Franklin Covey planning organizers helped set me straight. The software helped me further improve my act.
Franklin Covey's planning software and organizational system centers on Stephen Covey's Seven Habits. A crucial part of the process is the crafting of a mission statement. Says the Hot Sundae: Today I made the exercise of doing the section of my planner called "Mission." To be specific, I wrote my personal mission. It is based on what I value in life, and what my priorities are. For those who do not have a planner and would like to buy one, I highly recommend the Franklin Planner, in either the paper or the electronic form. It does more than keep track of your appointments; it helps you to plan your life and accomplish the things you want. For those who are not in the market for a planner, I still recommend the process of mission planning. Every mission is personal, and your list will not look like mine. It can be in paragraph form or (as I've done) in an outline form. It can include pictures if you want, or lists, or key words. But the key is to determine what matters and put it into words.
Couldn't agree with her more. My own mission-statement process took several drafts, misfires and a couple of years. The one I've finally committed to inspires and centers me. When I start losing it amidst life's distractions, it reminds me of what I said mattered the most. I adjust accordingly.

I highly recommend both the process and the organization system. If you don't want to splurge on software or day-planners, try the mission statement process. It's free. Franklin Covey's site even has a mission statement builder to help get you started. Ok, some of it's a little hokey. So here's meatier prompts for you:
  • Begin with the 11th commandment. See how you can best live it in the context of your life.
  • Try 1 Corinthians 13. Conform your life's aspirations to Love's design.
  • Profile a Saint. Choose five ways you could live like that saint in the life you live right now.
Or don't. It's your call.

But I'll bet you'll be glad you did!