Ten Tips for Organizing a Sane and Productive Day (Part 1)

Here we are one month into 2014. Have you been able to keep your NTime Management Tipsew Year’s resolution? If not, you are in good company, but you can re-dedicate yourself to your organizing resolution starting this month and to help you we are focusing on “organizing your schedule”.

Since it is never a good idea to try to change everything all at once, we are going to encourage you to focus on the top four tips. Really practice them until they become a habit. In Part 2 I will share six more tips to help you even more with organizing your schedule.

Barbara Hemphill asserted the notion that clutter is just an unmade decision, so it stands to reason that deciding to be productive is the first step to becoming productive. As a busy mother, we see you as the leader of the household and the family. With that thought in mind, here are ten tips to help you plan a sane and productive day:

 1.       Start with the list – a “To Do” List

Get it all out of your head and on to paper, digital or hard copy. Everything you want done deserves a spot on your to-do list. Don’t hold back, from picking up the dry cleaning to dropping weight to getting a pedicure or getting junior’s portrait taken. As you are jotting the myriad of things that you want and need to be sure to note how much time you think it will take. 

 2.       Sort your tasks by priority

Life is filled with lots of things to do… so much so it can sometimes be hard to decide. Go back to your list and start with the things that must be done (i.e., Dr appts, paying bills, social events you have committed to, etc) and add them to your calendar. Bottom line is if you do not plan to do things, they will probably not get done. Then finish up the list by scheduling the things you want to get done (i.e., pedicure, dinner with friends, etc.). I recommend that you cross off items on your list as you schedule them. When a whole page of things have been scheduled then mark the page with a big check mark or simply rip it out. You need to decide what motivates you more, seeing you “To Do Journal” grow thinner or seeing all the big red check marks! (I personally like the big red check marks. In fact I keep a sharpie in my drawer just for this!)

 3.       Pick the best planner.

Some people love paper calendars and others electronic. In the end it doesn’t really matter. What is important is to use whatever works best for you so that you will use it! If you are the keeper of the “family calendar” then it is vitally important that everyone have access to it. I recommend a monthly calendar that can hang on the side of the fridge making it easy for all family members to see what is going on and update it with their latest activities. {link to Mom-Plan-It calendar} about the best way to track your various tasks.

 4.       Plan with your family.

Take time at least once per week to review your schedule with your family. With all that you have going on – errands, grocery shopping, chores, soccer, ballet, car pool, bills, vacation, forms to be completed, appointments, yard work, social activities, etc – it is imperative that you take a moment to discuss who is doing what, when and who needs to be involved. A few minutes after dinner on Sunday planning the upcoming week can be the difference between a just busy week and a busy, stressful week.

So there you have it; my top four tips to get you started organizing your schedule. Want to know the other six tips? Click here!

I would love to hear how it is working for you. Schedule a few minutes in your calendar to leave me a comment!

Image courtesy of Keerati / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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