Here’s the thing, I’ve never actually thought of myself as an organised mum. However throughout my life, I have been always been given positive comments like
” I don’t know how you have the energy”, “how do you do it all?” and “you’re so fast”. Doesn’t mean I’m an organised mum right? Um well… it kind of does and that’s where I can help you too.
I also used to believe that I’m not organised because I don’t plan a daily schedule my whole day from hour to hour. The truth is that I still don’t believe you need to do that, have an online system or complicated journal to be an organised mum. You can find out more about me on my home page.
Write Everything Down (Not!)
I’m actually going to go against the grain here a bit. Take a step back. So you want to be organised but find that when you come to writing everything down in your fancy journal you just don’t know where and what to write. Especially being a mum, I don’t think people realise that we have a multitude of activities! From tasks like tackling the laundry to attending a meeting with our suppliers for a first book signing!
Divide and Rule?
With list writing, your mind is quickly running through a multitude of tasks that you need to action and don’t worry if you forget any. Just add them in!! I find when I’m listing my tasks that there are so many and I just keep adding them. At this initial stage I’m not even thinking about categorising them in terms of health and fitness, home organisation, business, family etc. It’s a really simple and effective method.
Using Your Journal
Here’s a few simple tips when using a journal. It’s something I certainly do when I’m list writing or planning ahead.
I tend not to write on the other side of the page so that I have a section to write a little more detailed notes if I need to. A bound book is better to use for taking notes or writing lists than loose leaf. That might just be me but it means that all details are consolidated into one space and there aren’t pages that are ripped out and all over the place. Please do resist the temptation!!
Don’t be scared to write in your journal. It’s a bit like painting on a new canvas. Take five minutes to think about it and then take the leap and get writing! Why not have a cup of tea, or your favourite brew and settle down in a ‘space’ that you can zone out and really focus.
I have some beautiful handcrafted watercolour journals on my Three Kids and Heels Etsy store. Just hop over to my store and get your planning juices going. One of my favourite journals is the Spring flower design. I love Spring and that’s when I find my energy levels and ideas really springing into action!
Only once you’ve listed all tasks should you number them in order of importance. Then as you complete them, cross them out or put a tick next to them. It really is that simple. If you would like to categorise your tasks then you could use separate pages or even separate journals. Personally, I like to have everything in one space and then just keep adding to the list as I go along, the next day and so on. It’s much easier than writing a new list and starting all over again.
Prioritising & Letting Go
No, I’m not talking about ruining your diet here! That’s another thing, for me personally I don’t believe diets work but I will leave that to another blog 🙂
I’m serious here when I say that prioritising is something you absolutely must do. Think about those positive comments I received. I’m obviously not superwoman and can’t possibly get everything done in God given hours. One thing I firmly believe in is prioritising. So, doing tasks in order of importance is key to achieving success in being more organised.
Another thing is to let go and actually put some things lower down in your list or better still, get rid of them if they are simply not adding value. A list should never be indefinite. It should be practical and manageable. Try to focus on the goal in sight first and work back to your tasks. Remove or prioritise tasks that do not directly lead to reaching your goal.
Routine is Your Best Friend
Routine really is your best friend. Making a list and completing tasks regularly really does make good habits stick. Imagine you had to care for plants. Watering them on a daily basis helps to nourish them and help them grow strong and tall. Without consistent food, light and water, not to mention pruning, you will either end up with an unruly monster of a plant or a limp poor resemblance of a plant. Writing lists, actioning them regularly, sticking to the plan and reflecting regularly, can really achieve your goals in sight!
Knowing When to Multi Task
There are plenty of ways of cutting down what seems like an exhaustive list and one of them is to multi-task. The trick is to know when you can do this otherwise you end up taking longer! For example, back in my student days, I couldn’t concentrate on my assignment when watching TV. Whereas, I can definitely watch my favourite programme whilst ironing. So find out what tasks can be done together so it works for you.
The trick is to know when you can do this otherwise you end up taking longer! For example, back in my student days I could never really concentrate on my assignment when listening to music or watching TV. Whereas I can definitely watch my favourite programme whilst ironing. So find out what tasks done together work for you.
Decluttering and Tidying Up
You might find it surprising that this is one of the steps to becoming more organised. The idea is that when you’re juggling different tasks on an ongoing basis, the less you have to juggle the better. Through decluttering and tidying up, you can reduce clutter that otherwise has to be dealt with. This makes it more of a hassle to-do list. Try taking each room at a time and focusing on certain areas. I have a great Home Organisation Kit that can help you get started straight away. All you have to do is download, print and get started!
Simple Is Beautiful
Often the simplest of methods are beautiful, having the greatest impact. I have first-hand experience of a better work life balance through following these steps. I hope you can too. Be prepared to follow routine but still be flexible; to reflect regularly but take action by prioritising and sometimes letting go.
Most of all, be proud of yourself for making small changes and making your life more organised a reality.