When you practice the essentials of planning, you give yourself the opportunity to make the best decisions and to have the life you want. Start your plan with the easy decisions – what to eat, what to wear, a workout plan, to do’s. Getting these essential plans written down will help you make better decisions through out your day.
Practice Planning Each Day
It takes practice to get really good at planning. Start with the essentials and start small – plan 1 or 2 days at a time or just plan when you are going to exercise and what you will have for lunch during the week. Add small daily tasks that you can check off your list. This gives your brain a positive boost. It sees that you are making progress and starts looking for ways to make more progress.
Most of us make hundreds of decisions each day. But when you decide ahead of time and make a plan, you lessen the chances of making choices with decision fatigue. Making these decisions and writing them down in you planner helps you to make better choices on more important decisions.
When I started my journey eight years ago, I thought I was pretty good at planning. While working in sales, I started making a daily plan. At the end of each day, I would plan and write down the things that I needed to get done, both personally and professionally. Today that has morphed into a weekly plan that I prepare each Sunday evening as well as a menu for the week that I plan on Thursdays. Using the essentials for planning, I plan for exercise, food, what I am going to wear, self-care, appointments, when I am going to the grocery, bank or other errands.
Try to plan as much as you can. By using the essentials of planning tips below, you can plan your day. Word of CAUTION here – you must build some flexibility in your plan because things change and you have to be willing to go with the flow when necessary.
Paper or Electronics?
There are lots of you that are super tech savvy and use electronics for planning but me, I am a paper girl! My planner, “>Blue Sky, shows me an entire month and each week in the month with plenty of space for planning.
On Sunday evenings, I sit down with my planner and plan out the week. I like “to do’s” so each day, I write the things down that I want to be sure I do like checking our bank accounts. On Thursday I do a menu for the following week and start a grocery list. Appointments, birthday reminders, etc. – it all goes on the planner. Food planning and some food prep tips will be shared in an upcoming blog.
In my planner, I make space to write my three goals at top of each page and I block time on the planner to work on those specific goals. Dedicate enough time to each of those goals weekly so that I am making progress.
Planning is an essential tool for a good life because it helps you make decisions that are moving you toward your goals. It also takes some of the stress out of decision making and allows you to make good decisions on the important things in your life.
Essentials of Planning Tips:
- Make it simple but start small
- Make it doable – now is not the time for lofty goals – remember, you are practicing
- Incorporate must do’s, need to do’s and its okay if it doesn’t get done do’s
- Be flexible – because you are going to mess up your plan and that is OK
- List your must do’s (goals) and block time on your calendar for them
- Place your top three goals at the top of each page of your planner
- List daily things you need to do
- Choose the way you want to plan – paper or electronic
- Remember that it is about YOU, your life and your decisions
Make your plan simple and doable. Get ready to start living the life you want!
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Great post Kim! I like the idea of putting my top three goals at the top of each page. I think it will help me stay focused.
It definitely helps me to focus on what’s important!
Kim – I am a paper girl, too!
The big take away from your post, for me, is to book the time in my schedule once I decide on my “must dos.”
Otherwise, it’s just a stressful list that just keeps piling up.
Thanks for the planning tips.
Must do’s and my goals are always at the top of my list!
Love prioritizing and making lists! Where would we be without planning? I’m still a pen and paper gal!
Love Pen and Paper!