How to Plan Your Day
How to Plan Your Day to be Productive
Do you want to know how to plan your day to be productive? Planning is what can help set you up for success. If you are a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants type of person, hold on! These ideas can help you to have more fun, too.
First, let us look at an example of a day without a plan. It was not a fun day. Your family planned a beach day during the summer. In the weeks leading up to it, all your kids could talk about was roasting marshmallows. They talked about how they liked them cooked-just brown or completely black. They even wanted to set up a competition between themselves about how many they could eat.
But no one made a plan. You didn’t make a list when you went to the store and you did not buy marshmallows. You were preoccupied with getting hotdogs, chips, drinks, and paper goods. The day at the beach was a great success until your kids started to look for the marshmallows and could not find them anywhere.
With a plan, you everyone would have enjoyed roasted marshmallows. Without a plan, no one did. Instead, you heard grumbling and complaining and you may have been frustrated with yourself for forgetting the marshmallows.
Having a plan for your days can help you to live each day to the fullest. You can plan work and fun into each day so you can enjoy your life. You only have one life! Planning your days can the key to creating your best possible life.
There is a special note to make: in addition to planning your days to be productive, you also need to follow through with those plans to help them to be a success.
Planning is the first part of success.
Start with a plan.
Your plan is to be productive each day. If you don’t stop to first identify what is most important to you, your plans may not reflect that.
Planning is important, but planning the right things is crucial.
To help you figure this out, ask yourself some important questions. What does a productive day look like to you? What are your goals? Why are they important to you? What kind of a legacy do you want to leave for your family and those around you? What kind of a wife, mom, and friend do you want to be?
Take a look at your answers. The next step is to identify and decide how you can give these priorities time in your day.
For example, if you wrote that family is important to you, figure out what that looks like. It may look like dinner as a family each night. It may look like family prayers before bedtime, weekly family date nights, or monthly family days. It may look like reading to your kids and playing with them every day for a block of time when you are not distracted with other things.
Decide what family time looks like for you and your family. Write it down.
What about your personal goals? If you have a very little one, your goal might simply be to get more sleep! Your goal may be to write a book or to connect with a friend each month either in person or on the phone.
Write down your goal(s). If you have more than one, pick one to start with. Then ask yourself what you can do to achieve this goal.
A goal like getting more sleep can become a new habit. Decide what time you will get up in the morning and when you need to go to sleep to get the rest you need. If it is helpful, set a timer to remind yourself to get ready for bed each night.
If your goal is something that has a beginning and an ending time, like writing a book, you can approach it in two different ways. 1-Decide when you want to have your first draft completed, then decide how many hours a week it will take to reach that deadline. Schedule that amount of time each week to write. 2-Decide how many hours a week you want to or can spend writing. Write for this length of time each week until you get your first draft done.
To recap: Decide what is most important to you. What do you want to prioritize in your life? Then, make time each day or week to make it happen.
Write it down.
Write it down. Write it down. Yes, I do mean to write it down! This is very important. As a mom, you have a lot going on! Writing things down means they are not swimming around in your brain with all of your other thoughts and plans.
Writing things down helps you to see them concretely and make a good and workable plan.
After you have written down what is important to you and your goals, make an ideal plan for your week. This plan is an ideal plan, meaning that this is what you would like to realistically do if it was possible.
It might look something like this:
6:30 am wake up and pray
7:00 get up and dressed; exercise; start a load of laundry; have breakfast with the kids
8:30 start homeschool day
12:00 lunch break; laundry
1:00 quiet time for everyone; read the Bible or write
3:00 free time to play with kids
5:00 start dinner
6:00 dinner and clean up after dinner
7:30 family prayers
8:00 family time
9:00 have down time before bed
10:00 go to sleep
This is just to give you an idea. One day a week may be the day you go grocery shopping in the morning. Another day may be the day you have a park day with the kids. Some days may look a bit different. You can create an ideal day plan for these days as well.
The key is to write it down.
Important note: this is an ideal day plan, not an I-have-to-do-everything-according-to-the-plan type of plan. Some days things will happen beyond your control and your day’s ideal plan will get turned upside down! This is why it is called an ideal plan, not a set-in-stone plan.
Implementation is the second part of success.
A plan is part one. Following it is part two. Yes, sometimes things happen and you cannot follow your plan. Remember: you created an ideal plan to help you to be productive in your day. If something is not working, reevaluate your plan and make any necessary changes.
Review your daily plan the night before.
Take a minute or two in the evening to look at your plan for tomorrow. This will help you to start tomorrow well. You will refresh your memory about appointments, meal plans, or an activity you will do.
Spending time doing this will help you to be ready for your day.
Review your daily plan in the morning.
When you get up in the morning, review your day's plan. Do you have appointments to be ready for? Do you have a phone call planned with a friend?
Reviewing your plan will help you to follow it instead of beginning your day and forgetting what you planned.
Set yourself up for success.
These tips on how to plan your day to be productive will help you to live the life you want to have instead of letting life slip by.
Identify what is most important to you: the people in your life and your personal goals. Write them down. Decide how you will make time in your day for them. Plan your ideal day. Review your next day the night before. When you wake up in the morning, review your plans for the day. Follow through on your plans to create the life you want to live. Reevaluate your plans and make changes if something is not working well.
Enjoy the life that God has given you and make it the best that you can!
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