Manage your time, thoughts and money effectively
The little red notebook is designed to be a personal life manager for one year, to make you more conscious of your life management.
As the name implies, the book is designed to help you manage your goals and targets, budgets, and daily plans. It is by keeping records and meticulously writing down our plans that we can steadily set targets and achieve them.
The book is divided into sections for every month and the date labels are also left blank so you can start at anytime during the year and set a one year target.
The first section of every month shows the budget. Opening the page gives you an overview of your income and expenditure. You can also choose to note your starting account balances so you can follow the progress, especially on your savings account.
Multiple streams of income are provided for, and you have to label them as Active (A) or Passive (P). Active income is one where you have to work on to earn. If you don’t work on your active income, you don’t get paid. Passive income is one that doesn’t require you to work on it to get an income, like an investment. The aim of financial freedom is to increase your streams of passive income.
The assets and liabilities sections show you the constant ways through which your cash flow circulates. Assets bring in money and liabilities take away money. An example of an asset is an investment, while an example of a liability is a loan that you are paying monthly or yearly. Knowing this, it is logical to try and increase your assets and reduce the liabilities.
The next page shows expenditures. Label your expenditures as one-time (O) or recurring (R) if they recur every month. The aim of financial independence is to keep your recurring expenditure as low as possible while trying to increase your income.
Other unexpected expenditure might also come up, and it is good to note them as well. The next page is the final page on the budget section and is for notes and calculations on your budget.
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The next page records your monthly goals and action plans. It is important to constantly refer to your goals at least once a week so that you can tailor your daily activities towards your goals.
The to-do section covers the rest of the month and it keeps a record of your daily activities. The best way to effectively use this section is to plan your days ahead by writing down the tasks for the next day before going to bed and to reviewing completed tasks at the end of the day.
This way you are able to monitor you daily progress.
Another tool that can increase your daily efficiency and time management is the Time management Matrix by Steven Covey. It is a way of attaching importance to daily tasks by recording them in a grid or labeling them as:
Using the matrix, you want to identify the first category and spend the first part of your day on them, but not too much time because they are tasks to be done and are important but may not add to your overall goals very much. The second part contains mainly plans to reach your goals, and this is where you should spend the most productive time of your day. The rest of your day can be dedicated to the other two sections or parts of your daily activities.
Here are a few bits of advice from people who have used the life management notebook for two years:
- Try to establish a steady recurring expenditure, in order to keep your budget balanced and steadily increase your savings
- Fill in your budget section before touching your income for that month. This way you have an already mapped out expenditure plan
- Try as much as possible to use the time management matrix every day
- Put dates on every recording for future references
- Try to use the notebook to record everything related to your thoughts, time and money
We wish you all the best on your life management journey. Please feel free to contact us or leave a comment.