Like me, you’re probably a busy mum – juggling kids, activities, household chores, meals, maybe work too. Often it feels like my week gets away from me before it even starts (let’s be real, half the time I don’t even know what day it is). I know that when I’m on my game – my week runs smoothly (which is a better outcome for everyone in the family lol). How do I ensure that? It comes down to getting organised; how to organise yourself in order to simplify the week ahead.
I am definitely an A Type personality – very structured, I love lists, pride myself on having my shit together and getting it done without complaint! This worked out perfectly for me when it was just myself and hubby to worry about. I worked a million hours a week as a teacher, but I killed it. Then we had kids, and my ability to be so efficient completely went out the window. Yes, I am still organised – but not to the same extent or capacity. But, I do find that putting a few systems in place allows me to have a more streamlined, less stressful and more enjoyable week.
Here are 7 tips to getting organised in order to simplify your week ahead:
- Clean on Friday
I think that many of us do a Sunday clean, am I right? I definitely used to – but it ended up meaning that half of the weekend was spent in a stressed state. Between cleaning, groceries, meal prepping and washing, Sunday was gone before I knew it and we were back into the weekly grind. Changing your weekly clean to a Friday can make all the difference. Not only does it get it out of the way, but you get to enjoy a clean house while you relax on the weekend.
- Food Prep
This is a big one, but something that you can really get into the swing of once you find which system works best for you! Meal planning for the week ahead, doing one big grocery shop and then food prepping are all organisation hacks that really free up time throughout the working week. Knowing what you’re going to eat, only going to the supermarket once and then knowing that ingredients and snacks are ready to go not only allows you more time for other things but also reduces your mental load too.
- Get Prepared the Night Before
It’s believed that we only have a set amount of willpower to get us through each day. Every time we make a decision, we use up a bit of our willpower before essentially it’s all gone and we need to recharge. This is why celebrities and those with high powered jobs often have others making decisions for them – even down to what they wear each day! You can adopt this notion by preparing as much as possible the night before. Think: lunchboxes (for you and/or the kids), getting ingredients ready for breakfast, laying out your clothes, packing your/the kids bags. By completing these tasks the night before, you free up more time in the morning so that you don’t rush and run the risk of forgetting something!
- Sort Your Calendar
I am yet to find a calendar system that works for me 100% – and I imagine I am not the only one! Sorting your calendar means looking at all the different places you note down what’s coming up (your phone, computer, diary, wall planner etc) and lay out what you have on for the week ahead. One thing we do love in our house is our magnetic family planner – it has a space for each member of the family where we can note down what and where they need to be each day.
- Big List Sunday
Take some time on a Sunday to create a list for the week ahead. You consider going a step further and grouping them. I like to use the labels: must do’s (urgent tasks), need to’s (not urgent but needs to get done) and would like to’s. Spending time to consciously think through your to-do list will help to organise your week through prioritising. It also has the added bonus of processing your thoughts so you can sleep better and switch off knowing things are done.
- Nightly Small List
This is the same as the point above, each night take your big list from Sunday and break these down into smaller goals for the next day. You could keep the same categories so you know which tasks to approach first. Sitting down in the evening allows you to check in with what’s getting done and gives you the time to make adjustments to your week ahead.
Getting organised can take time, but should also save you time in the coming days. It’s important to view this additional (saved) time as time to recharge – not time to fit in more work / tasks / chores etc.
Simplifying your week down into manageable chunks and preparing ahead of time really does lead to a less stressful and more streamlined time! What could you do to prepare?