We all juggle a range of roles and responsibilities. In any one day, I jump from mom to business owner, to cook, to taxi service, to writer – and sometimes a collection of these all at once!
But multiple roles mean multiple task lists. Is it any surprise your brain gets fried and frazzled! With so much going on and so much to do, it can be hard to find time to think. That’s why organization is key. Take control of your life with these 7 simple tweaks and not only will you get more done, but you’ll feel a lot calmer too.
1. Your day
Either you run the day, or the day runs you – you choose.
Sure, the unexpected happens, but for the most part you do have control over what you do and how much you get done. It’s why you need a planner – so you can figure out your day on paper first. This practice allows you to figure out your priorities so you can make time for them. It also allows you to see your day at a glance. As a result, you’ll be able to work around any appointments and take the necessary steps to be in the right place at the right time.
Of course, your planner can become so much more than a place to plan your day.
With practices like bullet journaling, you can turn the blank pages into anything that’s going to help you be your best. From to-do lists to reflections and habit tracking to daily wins, turn your planner into a tool that helps you improve your future while you stay on top of today.
2. Your week
Get into the habit of planning your day and you’ll be shocked at how much more you can get done.
So imagine what can happen if you plan your week too? Instead of taking each day as it comes, turn Sunday into the most productive day of the week by taking 30 minutes to figure out the next 7 days.
The Weekly Action Pad is going to help you do this too. This tool transforms your weekly to-do list into a prioritized plan of action for the week to help you hit deadlines, avoid the last-minute rush, and move closer to your goals.
3. Your meals
We may have desires to cook from scratch, but it takes time. If you’re running late or something unexpected crops up, the last thing you want to do is try to figure out that evening’s dish.
Figuring out a menu for the week ahead can save both time and money. When you know what you’re going to eat on any given night, you can ensure you’ve got all the ingredients in advance. It’s a simple way to avoid unnecessary dashes to the grocery store (when you really should be focused on something else).
There’s another advantage…
When you decide in advance what you’re going to eat, you can batch your meal prep. Instead of chopping veg for one meal, you can do two or more. Simply pop in the fridge and cut the time it takes to cook drastically.
This is a great one to get kids involved in too. My eldest has taken the responsibility to plan the weekly menu and create the shopping list. It’s early days, but I’m liking the results so far. We’re eating better food, I’m scheduling time to cook, and instead of eating whatever’s in the cupboard, we’re enjoying a much richer variety.
4. Your clutter
Ever heard the saying that a cluttered home equals a cluttered mind? It’s weird how our outside world often reflects what’s happening inside. There’s definitely a correlation. When my head is full my desk often is too. Papers everywhere, sticky notes with scribbles, clutter on the bookshelves – it can weigh you down.
The same applies to the rest of your home. In my case, it’s toys the kids have grown out of, clothes I no longer wear, odd socks (there’s definitely a sock monster in my house), and a bizarre collection of stuff that slowly accumulates on top of the tumble dryer!
But something happens when I take the time to sort through these things, tidy up, and get rid of visual clutter.
Transform your surroundings and you change how you feel.
And when you change how you feel, you can approach your workload in a whole new way. I’m sure it’s no coincidence that my head feels much calmer when my desk is too.
5. Your morning
The way you start your day sets the pace for everything that follows.
For me, mornings tend to be a bit crazy. With three children to get out the door, there’s always an undertone of chaos. I hate rushing and getting to school late. It means I’m not present in the moment, so recently, I’m making more effort to ensure we have time for it all.
For example, we’ve started getting up a bit earlier. It’s amazing the difference that extra ten minutes mak. I check school clothes and bags the night before so we’re not frantically searching through the washing pile for something clean! We’ve even started deciding what’s for breakfast at bedtime (my daughter made a planner). Who’d have thought something so simple could make such an impact! Because we already know what’s happening, there are fewer arguments and deliberations in the morning.
What could you do to create more calm and order at the start of your day? Could you get up earlier so you can relax over your morning brew? What routines and rituals could you put in place to make everyone’s life easier? Take a few minutes to analyze your patterns and you’re more than likely stumble upon some simple tweaks to try.
6. Your everyday things
Thank goodness for my husband. He has this uncanny ability to easily locate the important things I’m never able to find. I’m forever leaving my keys or phone in a ‘safe’ place which I can never find again.
It’s so frustrating!
And time wasting too. It’s no fun racing around the house trying to locate your keys when you should have left the house 5 minutes earlier! There’s a simple solution to this. Give everything a home – and stick to it.
That way, you’ll ALWAYS know where to find the things you need (even at the last minute). It’s a simple way to say goodbye to unnecessary stress while you free up pockets of time you can use elsewhere.
7. Your thoughts
Each day, literally thousands of thoughts will run through your head. Some will be useful, but a lot will be repetitive. What are you going to eat, all the things you need to remember, problems you have to solve, things you’re worried about, places you need to be, jobs you need to do, the residue from the disagreement you have with your partner last week.
The problem with all this mental clutter is it steals your headspace from other things.
A cluttered mind doesn’t think as well as a clear head.
That’s why it’s super powerful to proactively empty your head onto paper – that way, you won’t have to rely on your brain to remember things.
Write a to-do list, journal your thoughts, create a shopping list, pop key dates on your calendar, brainstorm though your problems, work out what you’ll say to your partner.
Proactively free up bandwidth and not only will you have more capacity to think (and perform), but you’ll benefit from a clearer head too.
Our lives are fast-paced lives. We can’t escape this fact.
Instead, we just have to set ourselves up best to manage it the best way we can. But as you can see, there’s plenty you can do to calm an overactive mind and stay in control of your life.
So explore some of the ideas in this blog and let us know in the comments how you got on.