Sep 24, 2011

Do you do these three things?

I have a new favorite web site, Planner Perfect. As someone who loves to plan her day, the title of the web site alone was enough to attract my attention. Today Planner Perfect's author, Jenny, listed three habits she believes every woman must keep. I have to say, these three things are also very important to how my day goes, so I thought I'd share them here. Do go to Planner Perfect to get more of her ideas on organizing, scheduling, and even to purchase her Planner Perfect Planner.

Jenny says these three items are "must do's" and should be repeated to become a habit. Since these are already my established habits (starting back in the 1970's when I read my first copy of Sidetracked Home Executives- THE best organizational book EVER written!), I can't agree more.

1. Get up before your children (in my case, husband). I am up, showered, dressed, and downstairs before my husband's alarm clock goes off - every morning, even weekends. I try to have 30 minutes to myself before the day around me starts. This is usually the time I sit and make my To Do List and have my quiet (second) cup of coffee, normally, weather permitting, out on my deck. I did the same when my kids were at home. For me, there is no worse way to start your day than a loud child tugging you out of sleep, begging for breakfast or snitching on a sibling for (insert wide variety of reasons here). Much better that I am awake and mentally prepared.

2. Plan a morning routine and stick to it. Yes yes and yes! I'm delighted to see someone else does this! I am a creature of habit, and my strongest habits are my morning and night routines. These routines give me a mental sense of peace, whether it's writing my To Do List for the day or making the bed every morning. If nothing else gets done during the day, at least my routine has gotten me through the basics of cleaning up my kitchen, making my bed, getting myself dressed and presentable for the day. You can go to bed at night knowing in advance what you need to do the next morning, and you get out of bed and do it almost without thinking.

3. Plan a time of day for your interests. This is one that you see me working on with my new schedule of housework. For me, and I recognize this won't work for everyone, if I schedule my housework, my time is freed up for things I enjoy doing. (And don't let this blog fool you - I do NOT truly enjoy doing housework!) If I stick to my schedule, I can have what I need done by noon, and that frees up my afternoons for what I truly like to do, whether it be sewing, reading, coffee with friends, etc.  So my #3 might not be worded exactly the same as Planner Perfect's.

My #3 would read "3. Plan your day so you can free up time for your own interests."  If my house is dirty or cluttered, I find I am not mentally able to move on to other things and enjoy them. Work first so you can play later.

I will also add in my own number 4.

4. Never walk by something you can pick up and throw away or put away. Whether it's a piece of paper that's fallen to the floor, a cup now emptied of coffee, or a book you just finished and placed on the counter that needs to go back to the library, don't walk by it. Grab it, put it where it belongs - whether it's the trash can, the dishwasher, or a hanging tote bag for library returns. Don't pretend you don't see it. Don't walk by it as if it's not there. Pick it up, put it where it belongs. This makes a HUGE difference in the amount of clutter in your home!

Gretchin Rubin from "The Happiness Project" calls this "The One Minute Rule". When you see something that can be done in one minute or less, go ahead and do it. Here's her take on it. Enjoy!


Anonymous said...

I do things while I'm waiting on something else. While I'm cooking a meal or heating up my coffee in the microwave, I'm cleaning off the counters, doing up the pots and pans or emptying the dishwasher. While I wait for the computer to boot up, I'm putting things away or filing. While I'm upstairs waiting for the bathtub to fill, I clean the stool. After I've had my bath I use the washcloth to wipe out the tub, rinse and then wipe down the floor, then hang it on the edge of the hamper to dry. When it's dry it goes into the hamper.

I tend to grab things as I pass and put them in a pile on the way to where they belong, if I'm not going directly there at the time. We all, when we go upstairs, take whatever's on the bottom steps the rest of the way up, and then when I'm upstairs I put them where they belong.

Some things, though they take only a few minutes, will side-track me, though. If I go out to dump the compost, I may notice something out there that needs doing and forget completely that I'm cooking or baking something in the kitchen. So if I'm cooking or baking, I wear a small timer around my neck that reminds me to get back "on task".

Johnlyn ~ Frugality and Homemaking said...

I don't really have a comment other than to say that I have enjoyed reading your blog!!!

I haven't read the Side Tracked Home Executive book, but love love love my Flylady!