When you practice planning ahead you take most of the risk out of making poor decisions and you give yourself the opportunity to make favorable decisions rather than poor decisions. And it does take practice to plan. When you decide ahead of time on food, exercise, to do items, what you wear, etc., you lessen the chances of making decision fatigue choices. Most of us make hundreds of decision each day. This is taxing on our brains and emotions. Start small – plan 1 or 2 days at a time or just plan when you are going to exercise and maybe what you will have for lunch during the week. Plan 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.

I am a planner. When I started my journey five years ago, I thought I was pretty good at planning. I was creating menus for the week. When I was 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 Thursday evenings. I plan for exercise, food, self-care, appointments, when I am going to the grocery, bank or other errands. I try to plan as much as I can. Word of CAUTION here – be flexible in your plan. Things change and you have to be willing to go with the flow when necessary.

I know that there are lots of you that are super tech savy and use electronics for planning but me, I am a paper girl! My planner, Day Designer for Blue Sky, shows me an entire month and each week in the month. On Sunday evenings, I sit down with my planner and I 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 – checking our bank accounts for example. I also plan my exercise for each day. I remind myself that on Thursday I need to do a menu for the following week and start a grocery list. I grocery shop on Fridays on my way home. Appointments, birthday reminders, etc. – it all goes on the planner. I will cover food planning and some food prep tips in an upcoming blog.

In my planner, there is a space for two or three things that are must do’s for the week. Once I determine what those are, I block time on the planner to work on those specific items. Right now I am working on my ISSA Nutrition Specialist Certification and I am working on a blog calendar. I dedicate enough time to each of those tasks weekly so that I am making progress toward my goals.

Planning is an essential tool for a good life. It helps you make decisions that are moving you toward your goals. It also takes some of the stress out of decision making allowing you to make good decisions on the important things in your life.

See you on Tuesday with some additional tips for planning. Have an awesome weekend!

For a good life after 50,