sly : marketing

The Jumbo Wall Calendar Will Boost My Productivity

I have written a post about email productivity tips. Now, I’ll tell you one thing I wish I had bought to get a better overview of everything I’m doing.

wall calendar

I am still in Denmark. I’m currenlty inside at a playground in the city of Kolding. My kids are playing and I’m looking at the other parents looking at me. They got nothing better to do than to look at what I’m doing. I’m writing, and it’s sort of like an experiment. I believe it’s the first time I’ve been writing at a place like this. It’s interesting to see what people are doing when they have nothing to do. Let me just say that they look around a lot, and that they’re playing with their phones most of the time.

We’re having an awesome time in Denmark. We’ve been to Legoland, we’ve been to a zoo, and it feels like we’ve been everywhere. We’ve hardly been still for a minute.

A new McDonald’s experience

I have written about McDonalds’ before, and I thought that I hated McDonald’s, but that’s not true. They understand kids, and when my kids love things, I love it as well. Well, I’m a vegetarian and I probably shouldn’t say anything good about McDonald’s, but I’m not talking about the food, and what they’re doing to animals. I’m talking about marketing, and that I enjoy spending time with my kids there. I even had a road trip with my five year old son to McDonald’s.

But, today I had a different experience. I thought that McDonald’s was more or less identical all over the world. That was my view of this fast food chain. But, as a vegetarian, I tried to order McBean, a burger I had eaten in Sweden several times. It looks like this is not available in Denmark. So, I got a McFeast without meat. That was ok, but after I had received the meals, I was going to find the straws, the salt, the ketchup etc… and I couldn’t find a thing. Apparently, it was all behind the counter, and I had to ask for it while ordering. Now, I had to get back in line to get the ketchup, and since I wanted more than one single ketchup per meal, I had to pay for the extra. And they even had a standard for how much salt I could get for my food.

That was an interesting experience. I am not used to people telling me how much I should use, and at especially not at McDonald’s.

The jumbo wall calendar

This post is really about productivity, so I guess it’s time to get to the point.

I’m writing a book during my stay in Denmark, and I’m trying to find a way to juggle every task for my new business. Things are happening even though I’m on vacation in. Trying to do everything at the same time, has made me realize that I need to buy one thing for my business, and that’s a wall calendar. I need to have a visual of everything I am going to do every single day.

I have written about how to create a to-do list before. And even though it changes over time, I’m still using a software called Things, to add tasks and projects. I’m using it on my Mac, my iPhone and my iPad. It works great. The only problem with it is that I’m not staring at it while I’m working. I believe that if I have a huge wall calendar, I’ll get a lot more done, and I’ll be a lot more productive. I’ll be using Sunday to add tasks for the week, and I’ll add them to the calendar. I will only be adding three tasks a day, because I believe in not prioritzing more than three tasks. When I’m done with the three tasks, I’ll start doing things I feel like doing (things that are on my list and are part of various projects).

The calendar I’m considering buying is the laminated jumbo wall calendar. But, I need to get back home first, I want to measure the walls in my office in order to see if it will fit.

I really do need some advice on this purchase. Do you use a system to manage your tasks and projects? And, are you using a wall calendar?

46 responses to “The Jumbo Wall Calendar Will Boost My Productivity”

  1. Adrienne says:

    Wow, you really have to pay for extra ketchup at McDonald’s. Dang Jens that’s just ridiculous. Huh!!!

    I write everything down I’m doing in a notebook but each page is for a different day. Then I printed out my weekend schedule through an excel spreadsheet and I also have this on my desk in front of me as well. I know that these online tools are suppose to be helpful but like you mentioned Jens, I have to have it in front of me so I can be reminded of what I have to accomplish for the day.

    I don’t want the wall board mainly because I don’t have a separate office space here in my home so I don’t want those tacked to my walls. Printing out what I need to do and having it on my desk in front of me when I work is enough.

    Good luck to you Jens, I have no doubt you’ll figure it all out.


    • Hey Adrienne,

      I have been thinking about using an excel spreadsheet as well, and printing it out might do the trick for me. I know that I need to have it on paper, and I’m thinking that I need it on the wall so I can see it all the time. I’m still trying to figure this out 🙂

      Thanks a lot for your advice Adrienne.

      • Adrienne says:

        Would you like me to send you the one I’m using? It was created for our 100 day biz challenge and it really works very well. Be more than happy to send it to you so you can get an idea of how to keep your time blocked off for certain activities. Let me know and then send me your email address in Facebook and I’ll send you the attachment.

  2. Morgan says:

    Hi Jens!

    I used to have a white board that hung on the wall behind my desk that had all the tasks that needed to be done on it. I would be forced to take a look at it each day and therefore, those tasks just loomed over me until they got done. It was a GREAT way to stay productive. I don’t have that system now and my productivity has gone quite a bit.

    I think a jumpo wall calendar could definitely work, but I would need something smaller so that it wouldn’t be so daunting and I could easily see all tasks at hand.

    But it does look cool, that’s for sure! 🙂

    • Hey Morgan,

      Why did you stop using it? My major concern is that my kids will start drawing 🙂

      I like to get forced to do my tasks. And if I look at them every single day, I’ll eventually have to do them.

      • Morgan says:

        Oh I moved and got rid of my desk and somehow lost the whiteboard, too. However, I plan on getting a new desk & whiteboard this weekend; mostly in thanks to this post, actually. I’ve been looking for a desk for a long time and have been dragging my feet, but I can’t drag my feet any longer. 🙂

        Haha, that’s a reasonable fear!

        I agree; if you see it everyday, you realize procrastination just won’t work anymore.

        • Aha. I understand 🙂

          I thought you found a better way to get things done 🙂

          I also need a new desk. Actually, I want to redecorate everything and get everything in order. I’m planning to start all over and become a lot more productive.

          I’ve read so many books on the topic. It’s time for action 🙂

  3. Barry wells says:

    Hi Jens, it sounds like you’re having a good time on vacation and being kept busy by your children. That’s what it’s all about isn’t it, seeing the children smile 🙂

    I can understand you wanting a wall calendar to help keep you on track. I’ve thought about that myself but my trouble is I only have room behind my monitor and then I wouldn’t be able to reach it to add any details.

    My working area is so small that even if I place 2 or 3 pages on the desk only the top one is visible. It really grates me at times so i have a small whiteboard to the side with the major goals on it and then i take off a daily list and place it by my keyboard, ticking things off as I go. Its not great but I do get things done.

    I’d love an office where I can plan everything out and not have to move one item to get to another. If I want to make notes i have to move the keyboard and it does get annoying after a while, but such is life 😉

    Enjoy the rest of your vacation Jens,

    • Hey Barry,

      I’m having an awesome time in Denmark. I’ve just been to the local store and bought a beer. Now it’s time to eat potato chips and drink a beer. It’s time to relax 🙂

      My current office is small, actually, it’s tiny. But in August I’ll be renting an office and hopefully I can afford a bigger one. I really need to have enough space to fit the jumbo wall calendar 🙂

  4. Ruth Zive says:

    I hate McDonalds as well (and you know I’m vegetarian) – but my kids all loved it. They are marketing wizards, no doubt! But I’ve never heard of a McBean or a McFeast – definitely different here in Canada. I had a funny experience at McDonalds; I used to eat their fries (but they learned that they are seasoned using a meat derivative) and when I was in Spain, I asked for vinegar with my fries. That’s standard here in Canada and McDonalds gives you little vinegar packets. But in Spain…they thought I was nuts and they went back to the kitchen and brought me an industrial sized vinegar container that they use for cleaning purposes. Go figure.

    In any case, back on topic. I use a large, wall sized calendar, but it’s not ‘jumbo’. I like having everything laid out by the month, better than my Google Calendar (which is also good) or my Outlook calendar – something I can touch and feel and manipulate with my hands. I’d love to see what you find because in my new office, I’ll have much more space!

    • Hi Ruth,

      That’s funny. I am not used to all the various things you get in the US and Canada, so I sort of understand why they “panic” and end up brining you the industrial sized venegar 🙂

      I remember when a couple from the US and their 1 year old daughter visited me in Norway. They just wanted to eat fresh vegetables, and I had a really hard time finding restaurants that only had fresh vegetables on pizza and in the salads etc.. food is very different in Norway than in the US. But, if we look hard, we’ll find the awesome food as well 🙂

      I can’t wait to see images and hopefully a video from your new office. And I want to look at your calendar. I know that I have the same taste as you, so that’s probably something I’ll end wanting 🙂

  5. Beth says:

    LOL jumbo wall calendar? I tried to use calender to improve my productivity, but I find it hard to stick with my schedule. I guess I’m having trouble with my freelancer attitude since I’m in control of my time.

    • Hey Beth,

      That’s exactly what I’m thinking. This is the first time I’m a freelancer, and I need to do my best to stick with my schedule 🙂

      Do you have any tips to how you do it?

  6. Julie says:

    I really like your point on the importance of a to-do list. It is as important as a god business plan. It helps people to manage their time efficiently.

  7. Brain says:

    I managed my all work schedule for 3-4 days. Always, I use my personal laptop to manage all task and projects of business. I also used wall calendar because it is not possible to start laptop in early morning when we get up. Wall calendar is very important to manage some important tasks.

    • I’m using my laptop as well, along with my iPhone and iPad. It works great to use the calendar along with “Things” but I need to have it more visual in order to not forget and do the most important tasks first.

  8. Ralph says:

    I haven’t been back here is a while. I miss your style. I had to laugh at the McDonalds bit. Is it not interesting how in Europe portion control is a big deal? I haven’t been to Europe for many years but I spent a ton of time in Switzeland and Germany in my youth. Anyway, not the point. There’s a lesson in there when even McDonalds, some of the most over marketed crap on the planet, restricts the amount of katsup and salt you should use. Huh. And a McBean? That’s funny too!

    I have no space for such a big calendar. Small townhouse in the city core of Toronto. The meagre life of a consultant. Sigh. BUT on a brighter note I use MS Outlook which has a fantastic electronic calendar and a new program (at the office) called Basecamp which also has a very cool calendar app. That’s it for me. It works but I do agree seeing it infront of you could be motivating, for sure.

    Good idea, man.

    • Hey Ralph,

      It’s great to see you back here. I’ve been to Denmark on a vacation for the past week, so I haven’t been as much online as I’m used to 🙂

      I still haven’t bought the jumbo wall calendar, right now I’m using my computer/phone/iPad to sync all my tasks, and it works great… but I’m thinking that a wall calendar would be even better 🙂

  9. asma khan says:

    Feeling good to read that post.Whenever i see sometimes natural seen then i want to show on wall and want to see many peoples around those paintings ,natural color,natural way are most important part of excel sheet

  10. curi lema says:

    a jumbo wall calendar would be the answer for me toooo, brilliant idea mate, thanks for giving me the idea

  11. Maria says:

    I never been to Denmark but my sister who is currently living there says the country is beautiful and very peaceful. I somehow find your experience in the food chain discouraging. McDonalds have this focus and aim of providing quality service to customers, I guess the one you visited forgotten that aim.

  12. Jack says:

    I used to use a wall calendar but I found that most of the time I still focus on the calendar I have on my computer. It is snyched to my phone so I am never without it.

    Overall I find that when I use that and add alarms on my phone things tend to get done in a timely fashion.

  13. Vakarines Sukneles says:

    Sounds pretty interesting idea to use jumbo wall calendar to improve productivity… It could be a great help for some one sitting at same location & working. For people who travels around, this may not work. I happened to be in Melbourne & there I saw many people writing their “To Do” list on back side of arm. I quickly adopted that idea as notes don’t wash off when you clean palm with soap as its written on back side of arm.

    • I usually don’t travel much when I work, so that’s why I believe that it would be a great tool for me. But on the other hand, I need to combine it with the tools I’m already using. So the calendar would just be to get an overview of everything I’m doing.

      Thanks a lot for the feedback.

  14. Denise says:

    You wouldn’t miss doing any of your activity with your jumbo wall. Imagine every time you go to your the room seeing this wall calendar, you can surely be always on track and be consistent with your productivity.

    • Hey Denise,

      Thanks a lot for your feedback. I still haven’t bought the calendar, but I might sometime soon 🙂

      • Denise says:

        I hope I could have one too! I really need a big reminder for my daily activities now because I’m a bit out of focus again with my schedule. I hope that I could improve my productivity level.

  15. aaron says:

    I use my phone to set up reminders and alarms but The jumbo wall calendar is ultimate. Nothing can be missed unattended if this calender is used. I would recommend it to everyone and plan to buy it too.
    One thing I found very tricky in this stuff is that if can be damaged easily. Because my phone is personal and no one can access it instead of me. So there are less chances of a schedule being damaged. And there is an issue of privacy leak too :p

    Thanks for the information anyways 🙂

    • Hi Aaron,

      That’s what I do too. I use my phone and ipad with reminders and I try to look at my calendar at least a few times a day in order to get an overview. I believe that it would be a lot easier if the calendar was on the wall, this way it would be like it was staring at me in stead of me trying to find out what’s on it 🙂

  16. Cindy says:

    I am not a huge fan of McD these days, but I was when I went backpacking around the world [it was a cheap meal that was ‘clean’ in places that I couldn’t eat the food without getting ill] and found that the offers varied from country to country. Not only that, but in Thailand I found that they added so much salt to everything that I was thirsty for 2 or 3 days after. Taiwan had the strangest menus with the Big Mac and Fish the only recognisable products.

    • Hi Cindy,

      That’s very interesting. I had no idea that it was such huge differences between the various countries and McDonald’s. I usually don’t eat there, but my kids love it 🙂

  17. Jeevanjacobjohn says:

    I guess that’s how the Danes like it (maybe, they are more oriented towards getting things when they are in line ordering the food itself). Anyways, that is interesting.

    Now to the calendar part. I think that it can do a lot of help to you. I have started using an online app for managing all my blogging stuff and it has been working very well (except for the past few days – I couldn’t finish much out of the list because I was busy with Church during Passion week). I do hope to get back with everything.

    Anyways, I hope you find success with increasing your productivity with the calendar, Jens (As I see from all your posts, you are already productive, much more productive than most bloggers – I think).

    Thanks for sharing the post, Jens!

    Jeevan Jacob John

    • I am using “Things” to manage all my tasks, and it has been working great, the only thing I’m missing is that I want a big overview of everything and I want it to be staring at it without actually thinking about what I need to get done.

      Now, I have to open it up to find out what I’m going to do today or tomorrow, and I believe that it’s a lot better if I just walk in to the room and see the tasks and projects I need to be working on 🙂

  18. I am using my iphone and ipad to plan everything as well.

    Thanks a lot for the feedback 🙂

  19. Wendy says:

    Putting software on your pc is great but the biggest problem is you are generally working away on the pc on other work or using other software which means your tasks are not constantly in view.

    Anyone involved with project management will tell you yes there is great software on the market but still the best method and preferred method is a calendar with dates and schedules on a paper stuck to a wall.

  20. Nats says:

    I use a software that is like postit notes that are always visual on my screen. They annoy the hell out of me so it forces me to get the tasks completed.

  21. Sergio Felix says:

    Hey Jens,

    Man… I just checked the monthly planner you linked to, and what can I say… I WANT IT!

    It looks awesome and I’m pretty sure my life would be so much easier with such a thing on my working space.

    Looking forward to see what you get. Does Amazon ships to Norway without any problems?


    • Hey Sergio,

      I haven’t ordered it just yet, but I will. I need a huge calendar, that way I won’t be able to look away 🙂

      I’ve ordered many things from amazon, it’s never been a problem. How’s amazon to Mexico ?

      • Sergio Felix says:

        Hey Jens,

        Well it’s a hassle since they only ship books for now. It’s stuff that has to do with importing/exporting so every time I need something, I need to buy it through a friend that lives in the US.


        • I thought that Norway was difficult when it comes to importing and exporting, but I buy stuff from the US all the time. Well, I don’t buy expensive stuff, because then I have to go through customs and it will get very expensive. I usually buy things that are below $35.

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