Guest post by Sarah
1. Lists are a Girl’s Best Friend
Lists can bring sanity to a chaotic household. My husband and I have learned that something as simple as a magnetic list on the fridge ensures we don’t return from the store only to realize we’ve forgotten to purchase several key items!
Packing lists eliminate frustration with trip preparation.
Meal planning lists make grocery shopping significantly more efficient.
We also keep a list of household project ideas, so that with any down time, we simply pull out our list and determine which potential project would be best suited to our available time and supplies.
2. The Power of Prioritizing
I now have a “To Do List” template that breaks my daily tasks into three distinct categories:
- Urgent tasks that must be completed by end of day.
- Important tasks to work on as time allows.
- Future project ideas.
This ensures that my available time is always spent on the most urgent matters, and as time allows, I can easily knock out additional tasks that may be less time sensitive.
In addition, as one item is completed, sorting tasks in this manner allows for immediate selection of the next task at hand.
3. Multi-Tasking is a Must
Always look for ways to be productive while you wait!
If you let your dog outside each morning to do his business, use that time to pack your lunches for the day. While waiting for water to boil, you can empty the dishwasher. While on the phone, you can open mail, straighten your desk or fold a load of laundry.
4. A Chore A Day Keeps the House at Bay
Take 10 to 15 minutes a day to tackle a single household chore — emptying trashcans, dusting, vacuuming the main rooms or cleaning a bathroom. This will keep the house tidy, without requiring an hour and a half of cleaning each weekend.
5. Dinner After Dessert
Each night before bed I will plan our dinner for the next evening.
This allows advanced planning if meat or other items must be thawed, and helps me identify any potential ingredients I may be missing and need to pick up on my way home the following day. In addition, this eliminates my biggest pet peeve — coming home from a long day of work, and trying to come up with a plan of what to make for dinner!
6. Combining Work & Play
Finding ways to make your chores more enjoyable will increase your chances of actually completing them! I now save all my ironing for the weekends, where my husband and I will put on a good movie, and I tackle the ironing as we watch.
7. Just Say No to Procrastination
Procrastination is time management’s worst enemy. Take the bull by the horns and knock out the task at hands. Period!
Sarah is a Regional Sales and Customer Service Manager at Simmons First Bank. She and her husband do not yet have children (although she’s confident that will take time management to a whole new level!). However, with demanding jobs and a number of volunteer commitments, their schedules are usually very busy, and require a significant amount of organization and effective time management.
photo by Mitchell Bartlett