You may have been asking yourself, “When the heck is Part Three of this series coming!” I had every intention of writing Part Three the month after posting Part Two. However, my life took a sharp turn that month and I found myself dealing more urgent matters. No matter how well you have planned your time, you are not control of everything – you can only plan what you can control. I tell you this only to let you know it is okay not to be able to do it all. I had to put my Timely Tips on the back burner. I could beat myself up about it, but a much better approach is to focus on what I did accomplish, what I learned on a given day, and what I would do differently the next day.
If you have been following this series on becoming the CEO of your household, you may recall that Part One compared a household CEO making a family plan to how a business CEO would develop a business plan. Both start with a vision that helps define the mission for the family/company. A household CEO would then lead his or her family in setting out their mutual goals and developing a budget.
Part Two of the series looked at the use of an action plan to accomplish your mission and goals. The importance of daily routines and the understanding of habits were presented, as well as were time management and productivity strategies. One such strategy was planning each day based on your priorities. Consider what is urgent versus important, what can wait, and what activities have little to no value. That is exactly what I did when I had to put this section of the series on hold. It could wait.
In Part Three, I will introduce you to the concept of Organizing Systems that can help you keep your home running smoothly.
An organizing system can be defined as a set of integrated actions used to accomplish a given goal. The system might include organizing products or tools to help you achieve your desired outcome. For example, you may have a goal of planning a weekly menu. The organizing system for this goal could include a list of steps required to plan the meals, to determine which ingredients you already have and which you need to purchase, to make a grocery list, and to shop for ingredients. The system might provide you with tools such as an electronic or paper grocery list. There are even companies that provide meal planning services for people who have a hard time deciding on menus for their meals. For some people, such planning comes easy and a detailed system is not required. For others, meal planning is quite the challenge.
Each individual has their own preferred way of learning and their own way of thinking. This can impact the type of organizing system you would set up. Visual learners will do better with labeled, clear bins when controlling clutter. Auditory learners benefit by talking through different ways to organize, which will ultimately help them maintain whatever system is developed. If children are in the home, organizing systems must be appropriate for their age level so they can take out and put away things by themselves.
The key to staying organized is having systems in place. The system that works for your mother, your friend, or your neighbor is not necessarily the system that will work for you. If you are completely overwhelmed, start with one task – such as doing the laundry. Lay out the steps, the frequency, and the tools needed to accomplish the goal of having clean clothes for your family. Then evaluate if the system is working for you and, if not, adjust it until you find one that does.
I hope this series has helped someone who is working to become the CEO of their home! Future Timely Tips will focus on organizing systems for specific areas of your home.