"When did I let it get this way?"
No one else in my house is like me. THEREFORE: constant state of OCD overload. But it didn't used to be this way. Before we moved (again) I had a plan that worked. It did. I had certain days of the week designated for each room in my house, certain times of day that were set aside for specific tasks, I had a PLAN. And it worked. Oh, did I say that already? Well, it did. Dang it.
In my pursuit of structure I am reimplementing the plan! To simplify with me, here are 8 of my little secrets that could help organize your life starting right now.
1. Prioritize. You there, yeah you - should you be on the computer right now? I'm glad you're here, but are there dishes to do/laundry to sort/bills to pay/and on and on that you are procrastinating? Prioritize your time, do the important things first.
2. Get out of bed. Start your day right. What does that mean for you? For me it means getting up at least an hour before my children. Oh...it hurts. Especially on days when sleep is an illusion. But it changes my entire day. I get up, grab my coffee and Bible and just hang out in my big brown chair praying and reading and basically begging God to help me not mess up my kids that day.
3. Set up daily jobs. Even though I do the basics every day: clean the kitchen, keep the laundry going, straighten up and such; Every day I focus on one room of the house. This way, each room gets a complete cleaning once a week. My basic schedule is
4. Keep an up-to-date calendar. I was a paper girl for a long time, a stick-in-the-mud who refused to go electronic on things like to do lists and calendars. I have been converted by my iPhone and Google Calendar. You need Google Calendar. I put everything on this little beauty, from the most important dates all the way down to when my library books are due. It sends me text messages to remind me of things. Seriously, it's like having an assistant, only I don't have to pay them or buy them birthday presents.Monday: bathroom (start the week with a squeaky clean potty!)Tuesday: school room (this one needs more than one day a week...)Wednesday: Dining room/Living RoomThursday: Kitchen (trash goes out Friday morning so I set my kitchen/refrigerator day for the day before)Friday: Bedrooms (I do mine, kids do theirs. Well, the kids MOSTLY do theirs)Saturday: Laundry. This is the day I catch up on any I didn't get to during the week.Sunday: REST!
5. Communicate with your spouse. Pick a day each week to sit down and sync your calendars. This is a must for my family because with my husband's ministry our schedule is rarely that same from week to week.
6. Set aside a planning time for meals and grocery shopping. I cannot emphasize enough how much more smoothly my week goes if I have planned out what we will eat for supper ahead of time and made sure I have all the ingredients. It's easier on the budget, too - no more asking the husband to stop by after work to pick up that one thing that's missing and then he comes home with four bags. (maybe that's just mine...)
7. Set aside a planning time for homeschooling. I know this one may just apply to me, but it has revolutionized my school teaching. This year I have set up binders for my kids with tabs for each day of the week. On Sunday afternoon I spend a few hours planning out our lessons for the week and putting their paperwork in their folders. This is SO helpful, no more hit and miss schooling!
8. And finally....Don't forget yourself! Yes, you have responsibilities. Yes, you are desperately needed by your family. But you are better at those responsibilities when you have had time for yourself. Treat yourself to running away to the bookstore once a week, or even just 10 minutes a day of quiet while the kids play outside. You are important, don't put your own sanity last. You may end up like me if you do....
Now, take a minute and imagine what your life would be like if you implemented these. Go ahead, I'll wait.....
Did you sigh? Did you shoulders relax a little? It's Monday, what better day to start a new plan to organize your life! Who's with me?