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4 Time Management Systems for Creative Thinkers with Dyslexia

Some of the biggest struggles for people with dyslexia surround working memory and time blindness. While there is no way to turn off your dyslexia, there are some cool ways to manage your time.

Today we are running through 4-time management systems that, honestly, will work for all dyslexics but are more likely to have success for those who skew more towards the creative side. Remember, not every person with dyslexia is the same. It is ok if none of these systems work for you! Also, as a word of warning, you might fail, and that is ok! If you want to see some other time management systems, we recommend checking out THIS blog or our Get Things Done Hack for Dyslexics blog.

Method: Bullet Journal

What is it?

The Bullet Journal method (aka BuJo) has a lot of structure! The goal is to create a daily note-taking system that keeps you organized and on task. We will discuss his approach on light mode (BuJo can be a lot at first).

How does it work?

  1. Get a notebook and a pen (We recommend a Bullet Journal with dots and some fun colored pens and markets).

  2. Number the pages of your book, starting about three pages into your notebook.

  3. Create a topic on each page (Home Stuff, Product Launch, Holiday Planning, etc.). Feel free to get creative and make cute titles.

  4. Create a task/to-do list corresponding to your page topics (plan the holiday menu, order the turkey, get flights booked, clean the guest room). Feeling creative, use stickers in addition to words).

  5. Create an action system, and make the to-dos on your list with the appropriate color (Pink= To Do, Blue= Moved to a Different List, Green= Need to Schedule, Yellow= need to order, etc. ).

  6. Find items that have specific dates and put in the date (make sure it is big).

  7. Get achieving!

Why it Works for Dyslexics!

One of the on-and-off problems that dyslexics face is the list within the list. The bullet journal method helps you create lists within lists and break down your brain dump from a billion scattered thoughts to organized action-based notes. One of the things we like about the bullet journal with no lines is it encourages users to doodle, create fun charts, and more. Get visual and creative.

Method: Agile Results

What is it?

Some dude (J.D. Meiner) created the Agile Results system after he worked at Microsoft for several years. The idea behind the system is that you can get more stuff done by creating a work-life balance.

How does it work?

  1. Choose 3 outcomes for the day, 3 for the week, 3 for the month, and 3 for the year.

  2. Put your creative thinking skills together and create a narrative around those outcomes. For example, "write a blog" becomes "create change for someone with dyslexia."

  3. When choosing outcomes asking the right questions is essential: What do I want to achieve? What needs to be done? What should be done? What could be done? What value am I providing? How am I improving myself ( mind, body, career, fun, etc.)?

  4. Once a week identify, 3 things going well and 3 things to improve.

  5. After reviewing set boundaries! These should surround where you spend your time, what you focus on, and what is essential in your life. The goal is to align your boundaries toward your outcomes for the day, week, month, and year.

Why it Works for Dyslexics!

The Agile Results system works for dyslexics because it provides a structure to achieve your goals that aren't too rigid. One of the other majorly appealing parts of the Agile Results method is that it pushes you to think narratively and to build context towards your goals. Narrative thinking is a dyslexic strength!

Method: Eisenhower Matrix

What is it?

The Eisenhower Matrix helps identify the most important task you need to be accomplishing and prioritize.

How does it work?

  1. Draw a box and break it up into four sections.

  2. Label each box: Do First, Schedule, Delegate, Don't Do.

    1. Do First- these are tasks that need to get done asap.

    2. Schedule- these tasks are important but can be scheduled later.

    3. Delegate- tasks in this category are things you can hand off to others and approve or check later.

    4. Don't Do- this category is the unimportant tasks that are floating around in your brain that you don't need to do!

Why it Works for Dyslexics!

If you struggle with prioritizing tasks and straight list-making, the Eisenhower Matrix might be for you. The visual aspect of this system is dyslexic-friendly. We will also say we love the delegate and don't do categories. Dyslexics can be overachievers, and these categories help fight burnout.

Method: Don't Break the Chain

What is it?

From a conversation between cartoonist Brad Isaac and Jerry Seinfeld, this system is built to propel a person into accomplishing a goal. By not "breaking the chain," people can create momentum toward their goals.

How does it work?

  1. Pick a goal

  2. Get a calendar you can hang up.

  3. Every day you work towards your goal, mark a big red X (or a green check mark).

  4. Don't go a day without working toward your goal.

Why it Works for Dyslexics!

The Don't Break the Chain system works for dyslexics for a few reasons! It is a visual system that is easy to start and keep doing (no fancy supplies or alerts) and builds habits over time. This system works best for those who have a big project to achieve or who are trying to learn and master a new skill.

While we encourage dyslexics to create systems that work for them, it is sometimes nice to have a starting point. Adapting these systems to your style can be a game changer. Another issue we want to make is that you can outgrow the systems you create for yourself. So be kind to yourself if you find something that worked for a month is no longer working for you!

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