Planning Efficiently

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Recently I’ve found that planning things beforehand makes me better able to do the things I want to do. The following is my ideal. Believe me this does NOT always happen! However I’ve realized if I don’t plan, things fall flat in my face. There’s no time to make dinner, I run out of things for lunch, Bryan and I schedule things oppositely and miss seeing each other and I space out on things I’m supposed to do!!

In order for me not to feel completely overwhelmed and flaky, planning has become a huge help. My biggest planning times are the beginning of the month, Sunday evening to plan for the week and every evening to make the next day go smoothly:)

In the beginning of the month:

– I update my google calendar with any appointments, classes, meetings, etc

– I make a family calendar for Bryan and me – what time we get home from work, when we’re working out, what nights we’re doing dinner , plans for the weekends, etc (this was the first month for this and I LOVED IT!) I print this up and put it on the fridge to update as needed

– I make a bare bones dinner menu for the month

– I make a master grocery list and a Costco list. I try to do one big grocery shopping list with all meat, canned goods, and then I get produce a couple different times throughout the month.

– I strategize who I want to make sure I spend time with that month – friends who hold me accountable, people I’m trying to get to know better, our neighbors, our family etc

On Sunday evenings:

– Go over dinner plans for the week

– Pull meat out of the freezer for the next couple days as necessary and make sure I have necessary ingredients for the meals I have planned

– Review the week with Bryan (plan when we’ll both be home from work, what time we’ll eat dinner, coordinate evening meetings and hangouts)

– Plan the hours I am working and days and times I’m planning on working out

– Plan my work clothes for the week

– Make a rough estimate of when I’m going to clean; if I need to cook or bake anything additional for work parties, community group, etc

Every night:

– Unpack my dirty clothes in my gym bag and re-pack with clean clothes, shoes, towel, protein bar

– Pack my lunch bag for the next day

– Clean (sometimes) and set out my nalgene and fiber one bar for breakfast

– Set out my bible, journal and pen on the dining room table, ready to be opened

– Straighten up the downstairs, fold up the blankets and compile all the junk into neat piles:)

– Set my clothes and jewelry ready in the bathroom

– Get meat out of the freezer to thaw in the refrigerator; if I’m doing something in the crockpot, I’ll put it all together the night before.  Sometimes I’ll go ahead and set aside ingredients I’ll need for dinner the next night.

And then I go to sleep, ready to wake up and get on with my day. It sounds silly but the thought and minutes it takes to do that the above in the morning is MUCH better spent the night before! Especially now that I’ve been working out-  I’ll often go to work in the morning, go to the gym right afterwards, then rush home, and need to make and eat dinner quickly before hubby has an evening meeting! When I’m leaving in the morning needed to be prepared for multiple places and activities, planning is my friend.

The girltalk blog talks about this often and here is a quick post that talks about the importance of planning. They cite this quote:

“Spending fifteen minutes thinking about what you are going to do before you start will save four hours of wasted time later on. Any individual who has thought through her workday, set priorities, and organized the days’ tasks is likely to accomplish far more than someone who randomly moves through the day.” (James W. Botkin)

Now to be honest, I’m not sure where this random “4 hours” comes from. HOWEVER, I do know when I plan well, I can get a lot more accomplished and NOT feel like my life is spinning out of control. Which to me, is so, so worth it. If you are anything like me and often flake out, forget things or feel overwhelmed, try adding more planning in your life! It sounds like a ton of work, but it’s amazing how quickly and easily it comes once you make a habit of it. And it’s even more amazing how much it can help you organize!!

What are some things you make sure to plan in your daily routine? What are some things you might need to plan better?

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About jackielopina

Follower of Jesus, Pastor's Wife, Cookie Baker.
This entry was posted in Domesticity, Home Management, Organization and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Planning Efficiently

  1. Kate Titus says:

    Thanks for that – great ideas. I need to do a lot more planning.

  2. Curry Winters says:

    I clean the dishes, dry them and put them away after dinner (instead of leaving them on the counter to dry) so in the morning we are starting with a fresh slate!

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